Why is sendmail is part of the system and not a package?

Erik Norgaard norgaard at locolomo.org
Thu Oct 29 17:55:22 UTC 2009

Giorgos Keramidas wrote:

> So Sendmail is a pretty heavy-weight program, but it also supports a lot of
> features. 

Which was the point, if the only process in base that requires some way 
to dump output other than send to syslog, is cron, then Sendmail is 
disproportionate solution for the problem.

> A replacement that would merely support local delivery would be
> "mostly ok" for some users but then everyone who _needs_ the special stuff
> Sendmail can do now would have to install a port.

I don't argue for a replacement but for the elimination. Install a port 
if you need an MTA, you're happy with that way for so many other 
standard services.

>> It appears to me that having an MTA in base is obsolete. A simple client
>> would do if anything at all. Further, if keeping an MTA costs resources
>> in patching and testing for every new release, then it goes from being a
>> remnant from history to slow down progress for the project.
> Having a local MTA, even in a SOHO network may be useful.  Instead of going
> through the same hoops to configure 4 different email clients, you can set
> up the local MTA and tell all your local mailer programs "send any of your
> messages to `localhost' and they will be delivered as usual".

There are tons of things that may be useful for somebody on a SOHO 
network. I don't agree you need an MTA when the only application 
requiring is cron.

The default should be to dump cron output to a file. No need to setup 4 
mail clients. Only if you want to send the output to a remote address 
would you need to do this.

> Having an MTA in the base system may not be obsolete.

The option remains to install from ports as with so many other things.

My concern is if some heavy legacy application, because of history or 
tradition, remains in base will draw resources from advancing in other 
areas that are much more relevant today.

BR, Erik

Erik Nørgaard
Ph: +34.666334818/+34.915211157                  http://www.locolomo.org

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