mail problem, using postfix & dovecot

Erik Cederstrand erik at
Mon Dec 3 14:06:54 PST 2007

Chuck Robey wrote:
> I have my mail system running on my FreeBSD server.  It uses postfix 
> outgoing, and dovecot to manage the Imap server, and finally Seamonkey 
> either locally or from one of my other machines, to read/write my mail, 
> it makes for a very portable mail system, but I am now convinced I have 
> one major bug.  It's that I'm getting too darn many duplicate mails.
> I didn't complain when that happened on all the FreeBSD posts, because 
> we have so daarn many people crossposting, it'd be foolish to try to fix 
> that.  BUT I just got dupes on some mail from Usenix, and I know Usenix 
> isn't double posting me.
> Any  idea of any common sort of mail mistake I might have made?  Mail 
> isn't my real forte, so I might well  have bungled something.  Any sort 
> of hint, right or wrong, would help, and especially the wrong ones: I'll 
> run them down anyhow, and during that running down, I often find the 
> real error, so don't think I'll jump upon you for stupid suggestions.
> The only sort of thing I won't try is suggestions to change the basic 
> method I use: I know Imap *can* be made to work, so I won't switch to 
> using something like popmail, I don't want to pop my mail.  Other than 
> that, any suggestion will be checked, believe me.

Just to narrow down the problem, take a look at the full headers of the 
duplicate mails and see if the mails are exact copies (i.e. the 
duplication occurs internally) or are in fact recieved py Postfix twice. 
Check the mail logs to see what Postfix, Dovecot and whatever else you 
have in the mix (SpamAssassin? Procmail? Postgrey?) are doing. Also make 
sure you're not just recieving the extra emails from some address you've 
set to forward to your normal address.


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