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Directing mail to a program 20 April 2000
This article documents how I captured incoming mail with a script.
Sometimes you want mail to be received and fed into a program rather than be stored in a mailbox. This is how I did that.
|My first attempt involved adding something like this to /etc/mail/virtusertable
(for more information on this file, please see virtual hosting
Then I did this from within /etc/mail:
makemap hash virtusertable < virtusertable
But mail sent to the address resulted in this error:
Apr 18 17:22:12 ducky sendmail: RAA10898: <firstname.lastname@example.org>... Cannot mail directly to programs
using aliases to do it
|OK. I'll now try duplicating what majordomo
does, which is where I got the idea to try the above. In this attempt, we will
modify the entry in /etc/mail/virtusertable to point to an alias.
First, I modified the entry from the previous section to be:
In this case, all mail for the above address will be handled by the alias test-yourdomain-org. Then I did a makemap again as per above. Now we will create the alias.
Next, I modified one of my majordomo alias files to contain this (you could try /etc/aliases):
Then I ran newaliases to invoke the above definition. Check your logs for any errors (perhaps /var/log/messages or /var/log/maillog).
Then I tried sending another test message. Yet another error message:
/usr/local/etc/freshports/mail-catcher/mail-catcher.pl: not found 554 "|/usr/local/etc/freshports/mail-catcher/mail-catcher.pl"... unknown mailer error 127
This was pretty easy to solve. The script wasn't in the expected location.
So I moved the file to
/usr/local/etc/freshports/mail-catcher.pl: permission denied 554 "|/usr/local/etc/freshports/mail-catcher.pl"... unknown mailer error 126
...which is almost, but not quite, the same error as I had above.
The long and the short of it is: I spent about 90 minutes trying to get this going. Please see the next section for the details.
Setting it all up
|Most of the above problems where permissions. Here's the main points::
Here is what the directory looks like:
drwxr-x--- 3 dan daemon 512 Apr 18 20:12 freshports
And the script:
-rwxr-x--- 1 dan daemon 830 Apr 18 20:10 mail-catcher.pl
The script outputs data to a subdirectory msgs. I chose this option for security reasons. The goal was to restrict the directories to which daemon had write access. I didn't want it to have write access to the directory in which the script existed, just in case. Here are the attributes of the msgs directory:
drwxrwx--- 2 dan daemon 512 Apr 18 20:21 msgs
Files in the above directory which were created by the script look like this:
-rw-r--r-- 1 daemon daemon 935 Apr 18 20:12 956045563.12488 -rw-r--r-- 1 daemon daemon 935 Apr 18 20:15 956045746.12546 -rw-r--r-- 1 daemon daemon 935 Apr 18 20:21 956046115.12604
|I am not aware of the security implications surrounding the daemon user. Is it a
security risk allowing the script to run as this user? Would it be better to create
a separate user, say freshports, and run the scripts as that user? Help in this area
would be appreciated. Please add your comments.
Someone also mentioned creating a user, sending the mail to their normal mailbox, then use .forward to redirect the mail to the program.
|That should get you started. If you spot any problems, as always, please add your comments.|