store mail in a mailbox
reads the standard input up to an
end-of-file and appends it to each user
must be a valid user name.
The options are as follows:
- Specify the sender's name.
- Don't create a username.lock
file while locking the spool.
- For compatibility, request that files named
username.lock be used for locking. (This is
the default behavior.)
Individual mail messages in the mailbox are delimited by an empty line followed
by a line beginning with the string “From ”. A line
containing the string “From ”, the sender's name and a
timestamp is prepended to each delivered mail message. A blank line is
appended to each message. A greater-than character
’) is prepended to any line in the
message which could be mistaken for a “From ” delimiter
Significant efforts have been made to ensure that
acts as securely as possible if the
spool directory is mode 1777 or 755. The default of mode 755 is more secure,
but it prevents mail clients from using
style locking. The use of 1777 is
more flexible in an NFS shared-spool environment, so many sites use it.
However, it does carry some risks, such as attackers filling the spool disk.
Some of these problems may be alleviated by making the spool a separate
filesystem, and placing quotas on it. The use of any mode other than 1777 and
755 for the spool directory is recommended against but may work properly.
The mailbox is always locked using
while mail is appended.
Unless the -L
flag is specified, a
file is also used.
If the biff(1)
service is returned
biff server is notified of delivered mail.
- Used to set the appropriate time zone on the
- temporary files
- user's mailbox directory
utility exits 0 on success,
and >0 if an error occurs.
A superset of mail.local
(handling mailbox reading
as well as mail delivery) appeared in Version 7
as the program
Using quotas in /var/mail
can be problematic if
as an MTA,
since it asks mail.local
to deliver a message to
multiple recipients if possible. This causes problems in a quota environment
since a message may be delivered to some users but not others due to disk
quotas. Even though the message was delivered to some of the recipients,
will exit with an exit code > 0,
redelivery later. That means that some users will keep getting the same
message every time sendmail(8)
runs its queue. This problem does not exist for
If you are running sendmail(8)
and have disk quotas on /var/mail
imperative that you unset the “m” mailer flag for the
‘local’ mailer. To do this, locate the line beginning with
“Mlocal” in /etc/mail/sendmail.cf
and remove the “m” from the flags section, denoted by
“F=”. Alternately, you can override the default mailer flags by
adding the line:
to your “.mc” file (this is the source file that is used to