MTA problems; root gets no mail

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# 1  
Old 02-10-2010
MTA problems; root gets no mail


I am afraid that I goofed up my mailing system.

I have an Ubuntu 9.10 system

$ uname -smor
Linux 2.6.31-14-generic x86_64 GNU/Linux

I am wanting to receive cron job mails. I noticed that cron jobs were trying to send mail to sendmail. I had installed ssmtp so I could send mail using gmail from the command line which also installed bsd-mailx. OOPS! I think this really messed up configurations. After further research, I purged ssmtp and reinstalled bsd-mailx which has postfix as a dependency.

Now, root doesn't get mail (via mail command), but root can send mail to users ok. Users can send and receive mail from user to user.

I think a side effect of this problem is that it messes up cron, as this is the only significant difference between this and other systems I have and they don't have this problem. Now cron processes hangs (the cron job itself completes) and becomes a zombie. Only restarting the cron service fixes it.

Any ideas how to resolve this short of restalling (which I'd rather not do)?


---------- Post updated at 06:04 PM ---------- Previous update was at 12:29 PM ----------

More scrounging around showed :

$ cat /etc/aliases
# See man 5 aliases for format
postmaster:    root

$ echo "Howdy" | sendmail -v root@localhost
Mail Delivery Status Report will be mailed to <woodnt>.

I think we are on to something here.

No aliases for root to woodnt, but sendmail is sending to woodnt.

BTW, tried sending mail to root from another user not woodnt and neither woodnt nor root got the mail. See this for the results:

woodnt@toshiba-laptop ~/.xchat2/downloads $ su luke
luke@toshiba-laptop /home/woodnt/.xchat2/downloads $ mail root
Subject: Hello
luke@toshiba-laptop /home/woodnt/.xchat2/downloads $ exit
woodnt@toshiba-laptop ~/.xchat2/downloads $ mail
No mail for woodnt
woodnt@toshiba-laptop ~/.xchat2/downloads $ sudo su
toshiba-laptop downloads # mail
No mail for root
toshiba-laptop downloads # exit

Any ideas where to go from here?

Last edited by Narnie; 02-10-2010 at 09:03 PM.. Reason: error correction
# 2  
Old 03-25-2010
Double check you don't have a a different file as the alias file in your config (which mean you may think root mail isn't suppose to go to woodnt but in some other file, it's set that way).

Check your mail logs - /var/log/mail.err, /var/log/, /var/log/mail.log, and /var/log/mail.warn - there are probably clues in there.
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