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Re: Email delivery (sendmail->procmail->$HOME/mbox) with fallback

Tim Alberts wrote:
John Summerfield wrote:
Tim Alberts wrote:
I want to configure email to deliver to ${HOME}/.mbox and I think I understand that now. Configure /etc/procmailrc with:


Ultimately however, /home will be an NFS mount. I am wondering what happens if that mount is not there when mail needs to be delivered. I am reading that procmail will 'just create it' which seems bad.

I would like to configure procmail so that if the NFS mount is not there, to just deliver to /var/mail/ (or /var/spool/mail) so that when I get the NFS mount back, I believe I can use formail/procmail to later get it from /var/mail to ${HOME}/.mbox. (If anyone has an example configuration that does this, I'd love to see it)


To better understand my sendmail configuration, does the following line mean:

FEATURE(local_procmail, `', `procmail -t -Y -a $h -d $u')dnl

that if email can't be delivered (because the directory doesn't exist), it will just go back into the mqueue for sendmail to try and deliver later? Is this a valid solution, or will sendmail just get overloaded with mail that can't be delivered? 'man procmail' shows this via the -t option if I read correctly.

In the end, clients can get their email with dovecot via pop3 or imap (or Usermin).

This last is by far the easiest in your position; it's what I do.

You could muck around getting the nfs mounting automatically with autofs, but installing sendmail+dovecot+usual-email-client just works.

Sorry I'm not following.  What's the easiest?

I'm moving to the NFS so I can have a central place for file and email storage on a system with quality hardware RAID1 and ideally fast SAS drives. Then the email server will run on a fast efficient system with cheaper drive and can be easily moved from system to system when hardware fails. This way, I don't end up with mbox's on several computers to keep track of.

Are you serious? You are running mission-critical applications on the second least reliable software offering from the RHL family?

Use good hardware, good software (RHEL or a clone), IMAP and not POP3, and use one of the reliable RAID (1, 4 or 5) choices for your mail (and other critical data) storage.

Even if a dodgy Fedora software update doesn't get you, you still have to contend with frequent upgrades of the software.

Note that RAID _can_ include a network block device (nbd or enhanced nbd drivers), and drbd also provided RAID1 over a network, and is tolerant of breaks in connectivity.

note that LVM can provide hot backups.

One trick I've hard of is to define a firewire drive (presumably USB or other hotplug drive) would do as part of a mirror pair. Backup goes something like this:
Plug it in
Detach (I don't recall the fine details here)

Google for terms such as "reliable linux" "high availability linux" "linux cluster" etc for more details.

My information is fairly old (2.4 kernels). Google can update you.



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