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RedHat 9 (Linux i386) - man page for innd (redhat section 8)

INND(8) 			     System Manager's Manual				  INND(8)

       innd, inndstart - InterNetNews daemon

       innd  [ -a ] [ -c days ] [ -C ] [ -d ] [ -f ] [ -H count ] [ -i count ] [ -IIP_address ] [
       -l size ] [ -m mode ] [ -n flag ] [ -o count ] [ -pfd_desc ] [ -Pport ] [ -r ] [ -s ] [ -t
       timeout ] [ -T count ] [ -u ] [ -X seconds ]

       inndstart [ flags ]

       Innd,  the  InterNetNews daemon, handles all incoming NNTP feeds.  It reads the active(5),
       newsfeeds(5), and incoming.conf(5) files into memory.  It then  opens  the  NNTP  port  to
       receive	articles  from remote sites (see the ``-p'' option), If <HAVE_UNIX_DOMAIN_SOCKETS
       in include/config.h> is defined, a Unix-domain stream  socket  to  receive  articles  from
       local  processes  such as nnrpd(8) and rnews(1), and a Unix-domain datagram socket for use
       by ctlinnd(8).  If <HAVE_UNIX_DOMAIN_SOCKETS in include/config.h> is  not  defined,  named
       pipes  are  used  instead.   Ctlinnd(8)	is  used  to direct the server to perform certain
       actions.  It also opens the history(5) database and two log files to replace its  standard
       output and standard error.

       Once  the  files  and  sockets have been opened, innd waits for connections and data to be
       ready on its ports by using select(2) and non-blocking I/O.  If no data is available, then
       it  will  flush	its  in-core  data  structures.  The default number of seconds to timeout
       before flushing is set as <DEFAULT_TIMEOUT in include/config.h> (typically 300) seconds.

       If innd gets an ENOSPC error (see intro(2)) while trying to  write  the	active	file,  an
       article	file,  or the history database, it will send itself a ``throttle'' command.  This
       will also happen if it gets too many I/O errors while writing to any files.

       Some parameters in inn.conf(5) can also be set innd's option.  In this case, parameters in
       inn.conf(5) are overridden by those options.

       -a     By  default, if a host if not mentioned in the incoming.conf file, then the connec-
	      tion is handed off to nnrpd.  If the ``-a'' flag is used, then any host can connect
	      and transfer articles.

       -c     innd  rejects  articles that are too old.  While this behavior can be controlled by
	      the history database, occasionally a site dumps a batch of very old news back  onto
	      the  network.   Use the ``-c'' flag to specify a cutoff.	For example ``-c21'' will
	      reject any articles that were posted more than 21 days ago.  A value of  zero  will
	      suppress	this check. The default is 14 days, but can be changed with the ``artcut-
	      off'' option in inn.conf(5)

       -C     If the ``-C'' flag is used, then innd will accept and propagate  but  not  actually
	      process  cancel or supersedes messages.  This is intended for sites concerned about
	      abuse of cancels and wish to use another cancel mechanism with greater  authentica-

       -d -f  Innd  normally  puts itself into the background, sets its standard output and error
	      to log files, and disassociates itself from the terminal.  Using	the  ``-d''  flag
	      instructs  the  server  to not do this, while using the ``-f'' flag just leaves the
	      server running the foreground.

       -H -T -X
	      The ``-H'', ``-T'', and ``-X'' flags control the	number	of  connects  per  minute
	      allowed.	 This  code  is meant to protect your server from newsreader clients that
	      make too many connects per minute to your server.  You should probably not  use  it
	      unless  you  are having a problem.  The table used for these checks is fixed at 128
	      entries and is used as a ring.  The size was chosen to make calculating  the  index
	      easy and to be pretty sure you won't run out of space.  In practice, it is doubtful
	      that you will use even half the table at any given moment.

	      The ``-H'' flag limits the number of times a host is  allowed  to  connect  to  the
	      server per ``-X'' seconds.  The default is 2.

	      The  ``-T''  flag  limits  the total number of incoming connects to innd per ``-X''
	      seconds.	The maximum value is 128.  The default is 60.

	      The ``-X'' sets the number of seconds used by the ``-H'' and ``-T'' flags.  A value
	      of zero turns off checking.  The default is 0.

       -i     To  limit the number of incoming NNTP connections, use the ``-i'' flag.  A value of
	      zero will suppress this check.  The default is 50, if the ``maxconnections'' option
	      in  inn.conf(5)  is not specified.  The ``maxconnections'' option in inn.conf(5) is
	      changed with this value.

       -I     This option allows you to bind innd to a specific interface  IP  address.   The  IP
	      address  must  be  in  dotted quad (nnn.nnn.nnn.nnn) format. See also the ``bindad-
	      dress'' option in inn.conf(5).

       -l     To limit the size of an article, use the ``-l'' flag.  If this flag is  used,  then
	      any  article  bigger  than  size	bytes  will be rejected.  The default is 1000000L
	      bytes.  Checking can be disabled by using a value of zero.  See also the	``maxart-
	      size'' and ``localmaxartsize'' option in inn.conf(5).

       -m     To  start the server in a paused or throttled state (see ctlinnd(8)) use the ``-m''
	      flag to set the initial running mode.  The argument should start with a single let-
	      ter g, p, or t, to emulate the ``go,'' ``pause,'' or ``throttle'' commands, respec-

       -n     The ``-n'' flag specifies whether or not pausing or throttling  the  server  should
	      also  disable  future newsreading processes.  A value of ``y'' will make newreaders
	      act as the server, a value of ``n'' will allow newsreading even when the server  is
	      not  running.   The  default  is to allow reading, but can also be changed with the
	      ``readerswhenstopped'' option in inn.conf(5).

       -o     To limit the number of files that will be kept open for outgoing	file  feeds,  use
	      the  ``-o''  flag.   The	default is the number of available descriptors minus some
	      reserved for internal use.

       -p     If the ``-p'' flag is used, then the NNTP port is assumed to be open on the  speci-
	      fied  descriptor.   (If this flag is used, then innd assumes it is running with the
	      proper permissions and it will not call chown(2) on any  files  or  directories  it

       -P     If  the ``-P'' flag is used, then the port specified is used for listening for con-
	      nections.  innd will need to have been executed with enough permissions to open the
	      specified port.

       -r     If  the  ``-r''  flag  is  used,	the  server will renumber the active file as if a
	      ``renumber'' command were sent.

       -s     If the ``-s'' flag is used, then innd will not do any work but  will  instead  just
	      check the syntax of the newsfeeds file.  It will exit with an error status if there
	      are any errors; the actual errors will be reported in syslog(3).

       -t     Change the timeout period before flushing to timeout seconds.

       -u     The logs are normally buffered; use the ``-u'' flag to have them unbuffered.

       Inndstart is a small front-end program that opens the  NNTP  port,  sets  its  userid  and
       groupid	to  the  news  maintainer, and then execs innd with the ``-p'' flag and a minimal
       secure, environment.  This is a small, easily-understood front-end  program  that  can  be
       used if a site does not want to run innd with root privileges.

       Arriving  articles that have a Control header are called control messages.  Except for the
       cancel message, these messages are implemented by external programs in the <pathcontrol in
       inn.conf>  directory,  if  <usecontrolchan  in  inn.conf>  is ``false''.  (Cancel messages
       update the history database, so they must be handled  internally;  the  cost  of  syncing,
       locking,  then  unlocking  would  be too high given the number of cancel messages that are

       When a control message arrives, the first word of  the  text  is  converted  to	lowercase
       except for ``cancel'' and used as the name of the program to execute; if the named program
       does not exist, then a program named <pathcontrol in inn.conf>/default is executed.

       All control programs are invoked with four parameters.  The first is the  address  of  the
       person  who  posted  the message; this is taken from the Sender header.	If that header is
       empty, then it is taken from the From header.  The second parameter is the address to send
       replies	to;  this  is  taken  from the Reply-To header.  If that header is empty then the
       poster's address is used.  The third parameter will be a name under which the  article  is
       filed,  relative  to the news spool directory.  The fourth parameter is the host that sent
       the article, as specified on the Path line.

       If <usecontrolchan in inn.conf> is ``true'', all control messages except  for  the  cancel
       will  never  processed by external program fork'ed by innd.  Instead they can be processed
       by controlchan script which is invoked as channel program by innd, and you need	to  setup
       newsfeeds(5)  to  use this script.  Processing by controlchan can reduce excessive load if
       many control messages arrive in a short time.

       The distribution of control message is also different from those of standard articles.

       Control messages are normally filed in the newsgroup named control.  They can be filed  in
       subgroups, however, based on the control message command.  For example, a newgroup message
       will be filed in control.newgroup if that group exists, otherwise it will be filed in con-

       Sites  may  explicitly have the ``control'' newsgroup in their subscription list, although
       it is usually best to exclude it.  If a control message is posted to a  group  whose  name
       ends with the four characters ``.ctl'' then the suffix is stripped off and what is left is
       used as the group name.	For example, a cancel message posted to  ``news.admin.ctl''  will
       be  sent  to  all  sites  that  subscribe  to ``control'' or ``news.admin.''  Newgroup and
       rmgroup messages receive additional special treatment.  If the  message	is  approved  and
       posted to the name of the group being created or removed, then the message will be sent to
       all sites whose subscription patterns would cause them to receive articles posted in  that

       If  <mergetogroups  in  inn.conf> is ``true'', if an article is posted to a newsgroup that
       starts with the three letters ``to.'' it will get special treatment if the newsgroup  does
       not  exist  in  the  active file: the article is filed into the newsgroup ``to'' and it is
       sent to the first site named after the prefix.  For example,  a	posting  to  ``to.uunet''
       will be filed in ``to'' and sent to the site ``uunet.''

       Innd implements the NNTP commands defined in RFC 977, with the following differences:

       1.     The  ``list''  may be followed by an optional ``active'', ``active.times'', ``news-
	      groups'' or ``subscription'' argument.  This common extension  is  not  fully  sup-
	      ported; see nnrpd(8).

       2.     The  ``authinfo  user''  and ``authinfo pass'' commands are implemented.	These are
	      based on the reference Unix implementation;  see	draft-barber-nntp-imp-07.txt  for
	      more detail.

       3.     A new command, ``mode reader'', is provided.  This command will cause the server to
	      pass the connection on to nnrpd.	The command ``mode query'' is intended for future
	      use, and is currently treated the same way.

       4.     The  commands to support streaming transfer ``check messageid'' and ``takethis mes-
	      sageid'' are provided.

       5.     A batch transfer command ``xbatch byte-count'' is also provided. This command  will
	      read  byte-count	bytes and store them for later processing by rnews(1) (which must
	      be started separately). See the programs innxbatch and sendxbatches.sh.

       6.     The only other commands implemented are ``head'' , ``help'' , ``ihave'' ,  ``quit''
	      , and ``stat''.

       Innd  modifies  as  few	article  headers as possible, although it could be better in this

       The following headers, if present, are removed:
       Empty headers and headers that consist of nothing but whitespace are also dropped.

       The local site's name (as determined by the ``pathhost''  value	in  inn.conf(5))  and  an
       exclamation point are prepended to the Path header, if the first site's name in the header
       is different from local one.

       The Xref header is removed and a new one created.

       The Lines header will be added if it is missing.

       Innd does not rewrite incorrect headers.  For example, it will not  replace  an	incorrect
       Lines header, but will reject the article.

       Innd  reports  all incoming articles in its log file.  This is a text file with a variable
       number of space-separated fields in one of the following formats:
	      mon dd hh:mm:ss.mmm + feed <Message-ID> site...
	      mon dd hh:mm:ss.mmm j feed <Message-ID> site...
	      mon dd hh:mm:ss.mmm c feed <Message-ID> site...
	      mon dd hh:mm:ss.mmm - feed <Message-ID> reason...
	      mon dd hh:mm:ss.mmm ? feed <Message-ID> reason...

       There can also be a hostname and size field after the Message-ID depending on  the  ``nnt-
       plinklog'' and ``logsize'' options in inn.conf(5)

       The  first  three fields are the date and time to millisecond resolution.  The fifth field
       is the site that sent the article (based on the Path header) and the sixth  field  is  the
       article's Message-ID; they will be a question mark if the information is not available.

       The fourth field indicates whether the article was accepted or not.  If it is a plus sign,
       then the article was accepted.  If it is the letter ``j'' then the article  was	accepted,
       but  all  of newsgroups have an ``j'' in their active field, so the article was filed into
       the ``junk'' newsgroup.	If the fourth field is the letter ``c'', then  a  cancel  message
       was  accepted  before  the  original article arrived.  In all three cases, the article has
       been accepted and the ``site...'' field contains the  space-separated  list  of	sites  to
       which the article is being sent.

       If  the	fourth	field  is  a  minus sign, then the article was rejected.  The reasons for
       rejection include:
	      "%s" header too long
	      "%s" wants to cancel <%s> by "%s"
	      Article exceeds local limit of %s bytes
	      Article posted in the future -- "%s"
	      Bad "%s" header
	      Can't write history
	      Duplicate "%s" header
	      EOF in headers
	      Linecount %s != %s +- %s
	      Missing %s header
	      No body
	      No colon-space in "%s" header
	      No space
	      Space before colon in "%s" header
	      Too old -- "%s"
	      Unapproved for "%s"
	      Unwanted newsgroup "%s"
	      Unwanted distribution "%s"
	      Whitespace in "Newsgroups" header -- "%s"
       Where ``%s'', above, is replaced by more specific information.

       If the fourth field is the letter ``?'', then the article includes strange  strings  which
       is  CR  without	LF  or	LF without CR.	Those characters are used together as ``CRLF'' to
       indicate end of line.  Currently this log entry just indicates the weirdness  of  article,
       and innd never rejects it for this reason.

       Note  that  if  an  article is accepted, and <wanttrash in inn.conf> is set to ``yes'' and
       none of the newsgroups are valid, it will be logged with two lines, a  ``j''  line  and	a
       minus sign line.

       Innd  also makes extensive reports through syslog.  The first word of the log message will
       be the name of the site if the entry is site-specific (such as a  ``connected''	message).
       The  first  word  will  be ``SERVER'' if the message relates to the server itself, such as
       when a read error occurs.

       If the second word is the four letters ``cant'' then an error is being reported.  In  this
       case,  the  next  two words generally name the system call or library routine that failed,
       and the object upon which the action was being performed.  The rest of the line	may  con-
       tain other information.

       In other cases, the second word attempts to summarize what change has been made, while the
       rest of the line gives more specific information.  The word ``internal''  generally  indi-
       cates an internal logic error.

       Innd  will catch SIGTERM and SIGDANGER and then it will shutdown.  If ``-d'' flag is used,
       SIGINT also will be catched and innd will shutdown.

       Innd will catch SIGUSR1 signal and recreate the control channel which  is  typically  used
       for ctlinnd(8).

       Written	by  Rich  $alz <rsalz@uunet.uu.net> for InterNetNews.  This is revision,
       dated 2000/08/20.

       active(5), ctlinnd(8), dbz(3), history(5),  incoming.conf(5),  inn.conf(5),  newsfeeds(5),
       nnrpd(8), rnews(1), syslog(8).


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