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Re: [bug-mailutils] Mail, sends to dead.letter once in a while, to black

From: Gene Heskett
Subject: Re: [bug-mailutils] Mail, sends to dead.letter once in a while, to black hole mostly
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 2013 10:11:16 -0400

On Thursday 04 July 2013 10:04:44 Gene Heskett did opine:

> On Wednesday 03 July 2013 15:57:31 Sergey Poznyakoff did opine:
> > Hi Gene,
> > 
> > There were quite a few mails in the list recently which my schedule
> > did not permit me to attend in time, for which I apologize.
> > 
> > > So, now, how do I troubleshoot what your /usr/bin/mail is actually
> > > doing with my pecks on the keyboard?  Does it keep a logfile
> > > someplace?
> > 
> > First of all, let's verify that the binary we are talking about is
> > really the mail utility from mailutils (Debian succeded in making such
> > a mess of UNUX that one can never be sure what binary one is running).
> > So, the first step is to try "mail --version".  If it shows "GNU
> > Mailutils", then we're at home.  Note, however, what version number
> > it shows.  That might be important.
> address@hidden:/etc# mail --version
> mail (GNU Mailutils 2.1)
> > The mailutils implementation of bin/mail never tries to deliver mails
> > directly.  Instead it uses a transport layer (a "mailer"), which is
> > configured via the variable "sendmail" (a misnomer, I readily agree).
> Humm, sendmail is not installed, but is being installed, while that is
> removing postfix.  I thought sendmail was part of every distro?  I have
> aklso heard that postfix can do the same exact job.  If this fixes it,
> then obviously postfix is not a universal replacement.  Sigh...
> > Its default value instructs mail to invoke "/usr/sbin/sendmail
> > -t -oi" and to pipe the composed message to its standard input.  This
> > variable may be redefined either in the site-wide configuration file
> > /etc/mail.rc or in the user configuration file ~/.mailrc.
> That file DID exist in /etc, an hour ago.  With the postfix removal it
> seems to have been removed.
> > You can
> > always check its value by running "set" without arguments from the
> > mail shell, or by running
> > 
> >    mail -E set </dev/null|grep ^sendmail
> As root:
> address@hidden:/etc#  mail -E set </dev/null|grep ^sendmail
> sendmail="sendmail:/usr/sbin/sendmail"
> As gene:
> address@hidden:~$ mail -E set </dev/null|grep ^sendmail
> sendmail="sendmail:/usr/sbin/sendmail"
> No diff there.
> > To see what is going on when mail is invoked, set the variable
> > "verbose" to true.  To do so, add the following line to either
> > address@hidden:/etc#  mail -E set </dev/null|grep ^sendmail
> > 
> >   set verbose
> > 
> > or use the option -E "set verbose" when invoking mail, e.g.
> > 
> >   mail -E "set verbose"  address@hidden
> And, with sendmail installed, I was able to send me a message using the
> above syntax, Yippee!
> debug output was:
> address@hidden:~$  mail -E "set verbose"  address@hidden
> Cc:
> Subject: Third test of local mail delivery sent to me as me
> Now is the time yadda yadda
> DEBUG: sendmail (/usr/sbin/sendmail)
> DEBUG: exec /usr/sbin/sendmail argv: /usr/sbin/sendmail -oi -t
> DEBUG: Sending headers...
> DEBUG: Header: To: <address@hidden>
> DEBUG: Header: Subject: Third test of local mail delivery sent to me as
> me DEBUG: Header: X-Mailer: mail (GNU Mailutils 2.1)
> DEBUG: Header:
> DEBUG: Sending body...
> DEBUG: /usr/sbin/sendmail exited with: 0
> Which looks fairly normal to me.  It looks as if sendmail was the magic
> twanger.
> So from root, su - amanda, and send another msg, works just as well.  I
> think we've pieced this puzzle together now.
> Thank you very much Sergey, Jordi and everybody.
> Cheers, Gene

It /almost/ worked last nite.  But the email was sent to 
/var/spool/mail/amanda, with 0600 perms.  It should have been sent to 
/var/spool/mail/gene.  I had to reset perms to 0666 before kmail, running 
as me, could read it.  And the lack of perms was driving kmail to extreme 

According to the line in amanda.conf, it should have been sent to me.

Where would I look to see where that was getting miss-directed?

Cheers, Gene
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 soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order."
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