sendmail man page on 4.4BSD

Man page or keyword search:  
man Server   1065 pages
apropos Keyword Search (all sections)
Output format
4.4BSD logo
[printable version]

SENDMAIL(8)		  BSD System Manager's Manual		   SENDMAIL(8)

     sendmail - send mail over the internet

     sendmail [flags] [address ...]
     mailq [-v]

     Sendmail sends a message to one or more recipients, routing the message
     over whatever networks are necessary.  Sendmail does internetwork for-
     warding as necessary to deliver the message to the correct place.

     Sendmail is not intended as a user interface routine; other programs pro-
     vide user-friendly front ends; sendmail is used only to deliver pre-
     formatted messages.

     With no flags, sendmail reads its standard input up to an end-of-file or
     a line consisting only of a single dot and sends a copy of the message
     found there to all of the addresses listed.  It determines the network(s)
     to use based on the syntax and contents of the addresses.

     Local addresses are looked up in a file and aliased appropriately.
     Aliasing can be prevented by preceding the address with a backslash.
     Normally the sender is not included in any alias expansions, e.g., if
     `john' sends to `group', and `group' includes `john' in the expansion,
     then the letter will not be delivered to `john'.


     -Btype	 Set the body type to type. Current legal values 7BIT or

     -ba	 Go into ARPANET mode.	All input lines must end with a CR-LF,
		 and all messages will be generated with a CR-LF at the end.
		 Also, the ``From:'' and ``Sender:'' fields are examined for
		 the name of the sender.

     -bd	 Run as a daemon.  This requires Berkeley IPC. Sendmail will
		 fork and run in background listening on socket 25 for incom-
		 ing SMTP connections.	This is normally run from /etc/rc.

     -bi	 Initialize the alias database.

     -bm	 Deliver mail in the usual way (default).

     -bp	 Print a listing of the queue.

     -bs	 Use the SMTP protocol as described in RFC821 on standard in-
		 put and output.  This flag implies all the operations of the
		 -ba flag that are compatible with SMTP.

     -bt	 Run in address test mode.  This mode reads addresses and
		 shows the steps in parsing; it is used for debugging configu-
		 ration tables.

     -bv	 Verify names only - do not try to collect or deliver a mes-
		 sage.	Verify mode is normally used for validating users or
		 mailing lists.

     -Cfile	 Use alternate configuration file.  Sendmail refuses to run as

		 root if an alternate configuration file is specified.

     -dX	 Set debugging value to X.

     -Ffullname	 Set the full name of the sender.

     -fname	 Sets the name of the ``from'' person (i.e., the sender of the
		 mail).	 -f can only be used by ``trusted'' users (normally
		 root, daemon, and network) or if the person you are trying to
		 become is the same as the person you are.

     -hN	 Set the hop count to N. The hop count is incremented every
		 time the mail is processed.  When it reaches a limit, the
		 mail is returned with an error message, the victim of an
		 aliasing loop.	 If not specified, ``Received:'' lines in the
		 message are counted.

     -n		 Don't do aliasing.

     -ox value	 Set option x to the specified value. Options are described

     -pprotocol	 Set the name of the protocol used to receive the message.
		 This can be a simple protocol name such as ``UUCP'' or a pro-
		 tocol and hostname, such as ``UUCP:ucbvax''.

     -q[time]	 Processed saved messages in the queue at given intervals.  If
		 time is omitted, process the queue once.  Time is given as a
		 tagged number, with `s' being seconds, `m' being minutes, `h'
		 being hours, `d' being days, and `w' being weeks.  For exam-
		 ple, `-q1h30m' or `-q90m' would both set the timeout to one
		 hour thirty minutes.  If time is specified, sendmail will run
		 in background.	 This option can be used safely with -bd.

     -rname	 An alternate and obsolete form of the -f flag.

     -t		 Read message for recipients.  To:, Cc:, and Bcc: lines will
		 be scanned for recipient addresses.  The Bcc: line will be
		 deleted before transmission.  Any addresses in the argument
		 list will be suppressed, that is, they will not receive
		 copies even if listed in the message header.

     -v		 Go into verbose mode.	Alias expansions will be announced,

     -X logfile	 Log all traffic in and out of mailers in the indicated log
		 file.	This should only be used as a last resort for debug-
		 ging mailer bugs.  It will log a lot of data very quickly.

     There are also a number of processing options that may be set.  Normally
     these will only be used by a system administrator.	 Options may be set
     either on the command line using the -o flag or in the configuration
     file.  This is a partial list; for a complete list (and details), consult
     the Sendmail Installation and Operation Guide. The options are:

     Afile	 Use alternate alias file.

     bnblocks	 The minimum number of free blocks needed on the spool

     c		 On mailers that are considered ``expensive'' to connect to,
		 don't initiate immediate connection.  This requires queueing.

     C N	 Checkpoint the queue file after every N successful deliveries
		 (default 10).	This avoids excessive duplicate deliveries
		 when sending to long mailing lists interrupted by system

     dx		 Set the delivery mode to x. Delivery modes are `i' for inter-
		 active (synchronous) delivery, `b' for background (asyn-
		 chronous) delivery, and `q' for queue only - i.e., actual de-
		 livery is done the next time the queue is run.

     D		 Try to automatically rebuild the alias database if necessary.

     ex		 Set error processing to mode x. Valid modes are `m' to mail
		 back the error message, `w' to ``write'' back the error mes-
		 sage (or mail it back if the sender is not logged in), `p' to
		 print the errors on the terminal (default), `q' to throw away
		 error messages (only exit status is returned), and `e' to do
		 special processing for the BerkNet.  If the text of the mes-
		 sage is not mailed back by modes `m' or `w' and if the sender
		 is local to this machine, a copy of the message is appended
		 to the file dead.letter in the sender's home directory.

     f		 Save UNIX-style From lines at the front of messages.

     G		 Match local mail names against the GECOS portion of the pass-
		 word file.

     g N	 The default group id to use when calling mailers.

     Hfile	 The SMTP help file.

     h N	 The maximum number of times a message is allowed to ``hop''
		 before we decide it is in a loop.

     i		 Do not take dots on a line by themselves as a message termi-

     j		 Send error messages in MIME format.

     Ktimeout	 Set connection cache timeout.

     kN		 Set connection cache size.

     Ln		 The log level.

     l		 Pay attention to the Errors-To: header.

     m		 Send to ``me'' (the sender) also if I am in an alias expan-

     n		 Validate the right hand side of aliases during a newalias-
		 es(1) command.

     o		 If set, this message may have old style headers.  If not set,
		 this message is guaranteed to have new style headers (i.e.,
		 commas instead of spaces between addresses).  If set, an
		 adaptive algorithm is used that will correctly determine the
		 header format in most cases.

     Qqueuedir	 Select the directory in which to queue messages.

     Sfile	 Save statistics in the named file.

     s		 Always instantiate the queue file, even under circumstances
		 where it is not strictly necessary.  This provides safety
		 against system crashes during delivery.

     Ttime	 Set the timeout on undelivered messages in the queue to the
		 specified time.  After delivery has failed (e.g., because of
		 a host being down) for this amount of time, failed messages
		 will be returned to the sender.  The default is three days.

     tstz, dtz	 Set the name of the time zone.

		 If set, a user database is consulted to get forwarding infor-
		 mation.  You can consider this an adjunct to the aliasing
		 mechanism, except that the database is intended to be dis-
		 tributed; aliases are local to a particular host.  This may
		 not be available if your sendmail does not have the USERDB
		 option compiled in.

     uN		 Set the default user id for mailers.

     Y		 Fork each job during queue runs.  May be convenient on memo-
		 ry-poor machines.

     7		 Strip incoming messages to seven bits.

     In aliases, the first character of a name may be a vertical bar to cause
     interpretation of the rest of the name as a command to pipe the mail to.
     It may be necessary to quote the name to keep sendmail from suppressing
     the blanks from between arguments.	 For example, a common alias is:

	   msgs: "|/usr/bin/msgs -s"

     Aliases may also have the syntax ``:include:filename'' to ask sendmail to
     read the named file for a list of recipients.  For example, an alias such

	   poets: ":include:/usr/local/lib/poets.list"

     would read /usr/local/lib/poets.list for the list of addresses making up
     the group.

     Sendmail returns an exit status describing what it did.  The codes are
     defined in <sysexits.h>:
	   EX_OK	   Successful completion on all addresses.
	   EX_NOUSER	   User name not recognized.
	   EX_UNAVAILABLE  Catchall meaning necessary resources were not
	   EX_SYNTAX	   Syntax error in address.
	   EX_SOFTWARE	   Internal software error, including bad arguments.
	   EX_OSERR	   Temporary operating system error, such as ``cannot
	   EX_NOHOST	   Host name not recognized.
	   EX_TEMPFAIL	   Message could not be sent immediately, but was

     If invoked as newaliases, sendmail will rebuild the alias database.  If
     invoked as mailq, sendmail will print the contents of the mail queue.

     Except for the file /etc/ itself, the following pathnames are
     all specified in /etc/ Thus, these values are only approxima-

     /etc/aliases	   raw data for alias names
     /etc/aliases.db	   data base of alias names
     /etc/	   configuration file
     /etc/sendmail.hf	   help file
     /var/log/  collected statistics

     /var/spool/mqueue/*   temp files
			   The process id of the daemon

     binmail(1),  mail(1),  rmail(1),  syslog(3),  aliases(5),	mailaddr(7),

     DARPA Internet Request For Comments RFC819, RFC821, RFC822.

     Sendmail - An Internetwork Mail Router, No. 9, SMM.

     Sendmail Installation and Operation Guide, No. 8, SMM.

     The sendmail command appeared in 4.2BSD.

4th Berkeley Distribution	 June 1, 1994				     5

List of man pages available for 4.4BSD

Copyright (c) for man pages and the logo by the respective OS vendor.

For those who want to learn more, the polarhome community provides shell access and support.

[legal] [privacy] [GNU] [policy] [cookies] [netiquette] [sponsors] [FAQ]
Polarhome, production since 1999.
Member of Polarhome portal.
Based on Fawad Halim's script.
Vote for polarhome
Free Shell Accounts :: the biggest list on the net