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Mail Server( Bind 8.2) with Red Hat 7.2.4 - how to retrieve the messages ...

Posted on 2004-08-16
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Last Modified: 2013-12-15
Hi All,
I am new to system admin and havebasic questions -
1)Actually, we are providing web hosting to one of our clients and keeping track of their confirmation orders in our mail server and getting one copy of each order in sysadmin mail account.At present,everything is working fine but they  couldn't find two orders which were lost somewhere on thursday last  and even I can see all orders  in the /var/spool/mail which were sent after that. Can you please help me in retrieving those mail orders ? I would be highly obliged with your prompt response.
Secondly, I have some basic question as how much is the mailbox size for each user defined by default and what happend when it become full and how can we change its size and send its contents to trash ?
Thanks alot in advance for your support and co-operation.
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Question by:mn210
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Expert Comment

by:jlevie
ID: 11811995
As to:

(1) You may be able to determine what happened to the missing messages from an examination of the maillog. But if the missing messages aren't still in the mail queue or in the destination mail box they aren't going to be retrievable.

(2) In almost all standard Linux email systems there's no arbitrary limit on the size of an individual mailbox. The limiting factor is the size of the file system that contains the mailbox (usually /var/spool/mail). If the file system becomes full messages may be lost.
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Author Comment

by:mn210
ID: 11815219
Thanks in advance for your support.

1) While logging as root , I can read the mailboxes of different users and for one user, I can read its text file for all messages recieved for last 7 days but when I checked today in the afternooen, all previous message were gone and I
 can see only fresh messages . Can anyone explain as what happened as that user have root permissions ?

2) As I am interested in retrieving orders for  terrys text file so, when try to open terrys text file in the /var/spool/mail get the following message :
 [root@sebulba mail]# cat terrys
From MAILER-DAEMON Mon Aug 16 14:20:10 2004
Date: Mon, 16 Aug 2004 14:20:10 -0400 (EDT)
From: Mail System Internal Data <MAILER-DAEMON@seba.mabci.org>
Subject: DON'T DELETE THIS MESSAGE -- FOLDER INTERNAL DATA
X-IMAP: 1024668614 0000006718
Status: RO
This text is part of the internal format of your mail folder, and is not
a real message.  It is created automatically by the mail system software.
If deleted, important folder data will be lost, and it will be re-created
with the data reset to initial values.
Can you please explain why ?

Thirdly, can we have two usernames defined in the root and sysadmin in aliases file like :
#
#       @(#)aliases     8.2 (Berkeley) 3/5/94
#
#  Aliases in this file will NOT be expanded in the header from
#  Mail,but WILL be visible over networks or from /bin/mail.
#
#       >>>>>>>>>>      The program "newaliases" must be run after
#       >> NOTE >>      this file is updated for any changes to
#       >>>>>>>>>>      show through to sendmail.
#
# Basic system aliases -- these MUST be present.
MAILER-DAEMON:  postmast
postmast:  root
# General redirections for pseudo accounts.
bin:  root
daemon:  root
games:  root
ingres:  root
nobody:  root
system:  root
toor:  root
uucp:  root
# Well-known aliases.
manager:  root
dumper:  root
operator:  root
# trap decode to catch security attacks
decode:  root
# Person who should get root's mail
root: john, mike

ragand: dragan@dmc.org
sysadmin: john, mike
 ---etc

Once again, Thanks alot  for your co-operation.






















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Expert Comment

by:jlevie
ID: 11815893
As to:

(1) Only when users are accessing a mailbox via IMAP will there be any likelyhood of old messages remaing in the mailbox. A POP client, or shell level mail reader like mail or pine, will empty the mail box as it reads the messages.

(2) That message tells me that you are using the UWash IMAP server and that the client has probably read the mail box with POP, which downloads the messages to the client and then deletes the messages from the server.

(3) Yes, having root equate to one or more user names causes all mail to root (or any other alias) to be sent to each of the user accounts (john & mike each get a copy of any message sent to root in this case).
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Author Comment

by:mn210
ID: 11817077
What happens to the mail which is sent during the time when mail server is down ?Is it stored somewhere or lost forever ?
Thanks alot  for sailing me thro....
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Expert Comment

by:jlevie
ID: 11817114
In the general case when the message is beig transferred from one Mail Transport Agent (MTA) to another is that the  originating MTA will hold the message in queue and retry the transmission at intervals until the message expires (usually for 4-5 days) or is delivered. The "queue lifetime" isn't cast in stone and system administrators can raise or lower that lifetime as they see fit.
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Author Comment

by:mn210
ID: 11817196
Just one last question, as I  couldn't find two mail orders and as we are providing web hosting to our client, is it possible that those messages may  be stored on the web server somewhere in the archive  and if possible, which directory should I look for?
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Accepted Solution

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jlevie earned 500 total points
ID: 11817379
Unless the web application explicitly archives each "confirmation email" I doubt that you'd find anything. You might get a clue as to whether the web application actually sent the email, and if so what happened to it, by an examination of the maillog on the web server for the day the orders were posted.
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