A lot of people who install this aren't doing it via Fantastico and trying to change email settings to suit your hosting provider is a pain. Editing the php.ini isn't always wise either because what works for one app will break another. I know that you can copy the php.ini to the directory, but that's something of a security risk. There's a reason that the default php.ini is stored outside the web root directory.
I know that I see a lot of users posting on the TikiWiki forums with questions about configuring SMTP.
Configuring the SMTP server is something that should probably be done during the install process and should be maintainable in case the mail host's name changes. So many ISP's now require authentication to send, even from the hosts on their own network, it would be advisable, simply for compatibility, to allow users to configure this from inside the admin interface. Inbound & Outbound Host name, port, SSL, user, pass, etc. I know that PHP has several mailer classes that handle this.
Thank you for bringing this up. I agree. This was added to SVN trunk for inclusion in Tiki 4.0 using Zend Framework
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