Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by David Smit » Wed, 23 Jun 2004 06:10:21

I am using Mutt, and am having a problem sending e-mail (Mutt is using
Sendmail). Sending ("y") appears to work, However, it does not.

The following is what I get:

Warning: could not send message for past 4 hours

The message text is the following (please excuse my including virtually
the complete message...I do not know what is of value, and not).

From XXXX@XXXXX.COM Wed Jun 2 08:15:13 2004
Return-Path: < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
Received: from localhost (localhost)
by localhost.localdomain (8.12.8/8.12.8) id i52FFCe4003230;
Wed, 2 Jun 2004 08:15:13 -0700
Date: Wed, 2 Jun 2004 08:15:13 -0700
From: Mail Delivery Subsystem < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
Message-Id: < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: multipart/report; report-type=delivery-status;
Subject: Warning: could not send message for past 4 hours
Auto-Submitted: auto-generated (warning-timeout)
Status: RO
Content-Length: 3153
Lines: 80

This is a MIME-encapsulated message



The original message was received at Tue, 1 Jun 2004 17:21:12 -0700
from localhost.localdomain []

----- Transcript of session follows -----
451 Name server timeout
Warning: message still undelivered after 4 hours
Will keep trying until message is 5 days old

Content-Type: message/delivery-status

Reporting-MTA: dns; localhost.localdomain
Arrival-Date: Tue, 1 Jun 2004 17:21:12 -0700

Final-Recipient: RFC822; [e-mail address deleted}
Action: delayed
Status: 4.4.3
Last-Attempt-Date: Wed, 2 Jun 2004 08:15:13 -0700
Will-Retry-Until: Sun, 6 Jun 2004 17:21:12 -0700

Content-Type: message/rfc822

Return-Path: < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
Received: from localhost.localdomain (localhost.localdomain [])
by localhost.localdomain (8.12.8/8.12.8) with ESMTP id i520LCCB015321
for [e-mail address delete]; Tue, 1 Jun 2004 17:21:12 -0700
Received: (from david@localhost)
by localhost.localdomain (8.12.8/8.12.8/Submit) id i520LCHr015319
for [e-mail address deleted}; Tue, 1 Jun 2004 17:21:12 -0700
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 2004 17:21:12 -0700
From: David Smith < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
To: Sapna Sharma [e-mail address deleted}
Subject: Re: [Fwd: Dice JobAlert for Agent programming]
Message-ID: < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
References: < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Disposition: inline
In-Reply-To: < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >
User-Agent: Mutt/1.4i


I have no problems sending the same message from within my browswer,
Mozilla. Entering ":set ?sendmail" within Mutt yields
'sendmail="/usr/sbin/sendmail -oem -oi". According to Mutt
documentation, the path part is correct. I am wondering if there may
not be a problem with the flags. The man page for sendmail is not
really helping me in terms of figuring if the flags are correct or not.

David Smith
1845 Purdue Ave #3
Los Angeles Calif 90025-5592
(310) 478-8050

Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by Rich Gibb » Wed, 23 Jun 2004 07:00:01

David Smith said the following, on 06/21/04 17:10:

I would read this, according to RFC 821, as indicating that there was an
error processing a request to a server at Hotmail (that is, an error
there, not on your system).


I can't see anything wrong with the format or headers of your original

My documentation for sendmail (Debian 3.0r1) says that '-oem' means
"return errors to sender", and that '-oi' means a single "." won't
terminate a message. I don't see a problem with either of those, and in
any case your MTA (sendmail) clearly accepted your message and tried to
send it.

Your comment about sending the message from Mozilla puzzles me. Did you
try this at the same time? A name server error at Hotmail is likely to
be transient (relatively speaking).

I would try sending mail to other (non-Hotmail) addresses, and see if
you experience similar problems. (Feel free to use the address in my
sig for a test if you'd like.) I've been running a mailing list for
several years, and the "free" mail services, like Hotmail, seem to have
more than their share of problems.

Rich Gibbs


Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by Alan Conno » Wed, 23 Jun 2004 07:12:14


Is that the actual path to Sendmail on YOUR box?

$ echo $SENDMAIL

$ type sendmail

Doesn't Mozilla have its own limited MTA for posting mail to a full-
featured MTA?

If so, what is IT doing? Is it authenticating? Is Sendmail?

Is it using ssl?

I'd do this: Bring up your connection to the Internet if necesary and,
as root:

# tethereal -i ppp0 -w savefile

(Use whatever interface is happenning for your mail or leave out -i
and argument and let tethereal choose whatever interface it wants.
It'll usually be right.)

Then send off a mail with Mozilla and then shut down tethereal with ^C
and take a look at savefile with:

# tethereal -r savefile | less

For a more detailed look:

# tethereal -r savefile -V | less

To see just the strings:

# strings tethfile | less

Now do it with another savefile and try to post with Mutt.

Compare the two files and post what seems to be relevant here.


Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by David Smit » Thu, 24 Jun 2004 02:40:50

Dear Mr. Conner:

Thank you for you reply. I wanted to thank you personally and not
clutter up the NGs, but you chose not to have an actual e-mail address,
so this will have to suffice. See below for comments.

Yields what would seem to be an empty line.

Yields nothing. The command prompt.

I assume so.

Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by David Smit » Thu, 24 Jun 2004 02:59:39

Dear Mr. Conner:

I discovered quite fortuitously (accidently, not fortunately), that if I
become root, and then type in "/usr/lib/sendmail -q" that mail gets sent
off correctly and right away. Can I correctly infer from this that
unless explicity told to, that sendmail does not immediately send mail,
but only at certain intervals. Another question: Do I have to invoke
sendmail as root, and not as my normal regular user?

Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by Alan Conno » Thu, 24 Jun 2004 04:25:49

Shouldn't be that way. On my box, mail is owned by group 'mail' and
ordinary users belong to that group too. This might solve your problem.

Please position your responses AFTER the parts of a post you are responding
to, and trim everything out of the article that you are not responding to,
noting that fact with something like <snip>.

In-other-words, don't toppost and trim your posts. Many people, including
myself, will ignore your responses if you don't format them in a readable



Pass-List -----> Block-List ----> Challenge-Response
The key to taking control of your mailbox. Design Parameters: ||
Challenge-Response links --

Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by Stephen Ha » Thu, 24 Jun 2004 13:54:58

David Smith < XXXX@XXXXX.COM > writes:

I discovered this was the case on YellowDog Linix (a ppc oriented
derivative of RedHat) some time back. I am typing this away from home
and can't easily check locations, so this is going to be from memory.
In /etc/sysconfig/ there is a script (called sendmail) that controls
the time interval. I think the default is one hour. This only
controls how often sendmail is invoked to send mail externally, it
does not control invocation for internal email. Between the time
intervals for external mail the messages are stored by mqueue and
sit in a directory /var/spool/mqueue.

For my system I simply modified the /etc/sysconfig/sendmail script to
call sendmail every ten minutes. On this system (a laptop) I check
mqueue before shutdown and if it contains mail then I can restart
sendmail using either services or /etc/rc.d/init.d/sendmail directly.

Stephen Harker XXXX@XXXXX.COM
School of Physics Baloney Baffles brains: Eric Frank Russell
University College

Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by David Smit » Fri, 02 Jul 2004 08:08:56

Dear Stephen:

Have been away for a bit. Your memory for file locations was good. Have
modified the "queue=1h" entry in /etc/sysconfig/sendmail to one minute.
Let's see if that works. If not, it is back to the drawing board.

P.S. This thread is within context of sending mail within Mutt. I have
no idea why, after so much time and trouble, I want so much to learn
Mutt. I suppose it is because it is non-gui, and if I can learn the ins
and outs of Mutt, that it will become my e-mail client of choice.
David Smith
1845 Purdue Ave #3
Los Angeles Calif 90025-5592
(310) 478-8050

Problem sending e-mail in MUTT

Post by ac06 » Sat, 03 Jul 2004 05:57:53

Sigh. Changing the "queue=1h" to "queue=1m" seemed to worsen things.
Back to the drawing board. Until this gets resolved, I can at least
take comfort in knowing that SOMETHING will send my mail immediately.