question about /var/spool/clientmqueue

Matthew Seaman m.seaman at
Thu Sep 2 06:02:43 PDT 2004

On Thu, Sep 02, 2004 at 03:09:21PM +0800, joshua wrote:

>   I found there is a directory named /var/spool/clientmqueue and many
> many file below this directory, what's use of this directory and the
> files under it? 

That's part of the workings of sendmail.  /var/spool/clientmqueue is
the holding area used by the MSP (Mail Submission Protocol) sendmail
instance before it injects the messages into the main MTA (Mail
Transport Agent) sendmail instance.

You'll get the effect you see by not running any sendmail daemons:
unix mailers will send e-mail by piping the message into the stdin of
sendmail, and sendmail will save the message in
/var/spool/clientmqueue for safe keeping before trying to connect to
the MTA to get the message delivered.  Normally there would be a
'queue runner' MSP sendmail instance which every half hour would retry
sending any message that couldn't be sent immediately.  Each message
will generate a 'df' (message routing info) and 'qf' (message headers
and body) file.  You can list out all of the messages and their status

    # mailq -v -Ac

A FreeBSD system basically assumes that it has e-mail connectivity
available to it: eg. any output from cron jobs will be e-mailed back
to the job's owner.  There will also be the daily, weekly and monthly
periodic script output.  You can modify /etc/periodic.conf to redirect
the periodic script output to log files rather than e-mail.  See

Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                       26 The Paddocks
                                                      Savill Way
PGP:         Marlow
Tel: +44 1628 476614                                  Bucks., SL7 1TH UK
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 187 bytes
Desc: not available
Url :

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list