sendmail: My unqualified host name

Polytropon freebsd at
Mon Jun 28 22:21:13 UTC 2010

On Mon, 28 Jun 2010 23:12:38 +0100, Michael <mlmichael70 at> wrote:
> Yes but I don't quite understand why. It's my laptop system and I don't 
> really need or want sendmail there.

You may want to reconsider this statement. :-)

> I guess it must be some script 
> trying to send email instead of logging to a file.

The sendmail facility is used by the system to deliver status messages
(e. g. by the daily/monthly/weekly periodic scripts, sometimes by the
printing subsystem), so it depends on an at least locally working
installation. There may be other services that rely on sendmail to
provide output directed to a system's mail box (usually root).

Check /etc/defaults/rc.conf for the sendmail_* family of options.

> But how can I find out exactly what is trying to use sendmail (which 
> fails and complaints)?

I think it's sendmail itself that complains on startup (running as
local-only delivery system).

> My configuration (8.0-RELEASE-p3):
> /etc/rc.conf
>     hostname="prime"
>     sendmail_enable="NONE"
> /etc/hosts
>     ::1                     localhost prime
>               localhost prime

Try to additionally define a domainname ".local" or ".lan", e. g.	localhost	prime.local prime

See "man 5 hosts" for details, I think it explains it very well (it's
right in the 1st paragraph).

Also give the full name in /etc/rc.conf: hostname="prime.local".

Then make sure to have visited /etc/mail doing "make all install". This
will make sure sendmail picks up all neccessary configuration items.

> It was all fine and quiet for months and started just recently.

So THAT is really strange.

> The only 
> change in the system I can think of is that I replaced pf with ipfw. 

I doubt that has anything to do with it.

> Still don't understand what is so urgent that sendmail keeps trying 
> every minute.

It fails to start properly because of a missing configuration item.

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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