[Pkg-exim4-users] mailname for outgoing mail

Marc Haber mh+pkg-exim4-users at zugschlus.de
Wed Jun 28 09:09:52 UTC 2006

On Tue, Jun 27, 2006 at 02:31:02PM -0700, Ross Boylan wrote:
> On Mon, 2006-06-26 at 14:12 +0200, Marc Haber wrote:
> > Using both "hide local mail name in outgoing mail" in conjunction with
> > a mailname set by the user does not seem to make sense in all
> > situations. It is, however, possible that there are situations in
> > which this might be desireable, which is the reason why the debconf
> > scripts are not checking for this situation.
> Ah, I forgot that /etc/mailname is not the only source of domains in
> mail headers.  "hide local mail name" will operate both on domains
> from /etc/mailname (which is what was confusing me and John) and domains
> from other sources (e.g., MUA's).

Hmmm. Any idea how to explain this better?

> Is it possible this facility, or really this question, is generating
> more confusion than it's worth?  I guess it depends partly on how likely
> FQDN's are to slip into the mail headers.

Yes, that's an entirely valid possibility. I cannot comment about
that, since all my boxes have fixed IP addresses and valid hostnames
and I have thus never needed nor used the "hide local mail name"
option. Since I didn't write this particular part of the config, and
we stayed pretty close to what exim 3 did, I can't judge whether this
option makes any sense.

Andreas, can you say something about this?

> > > Basically the same ambiguity occurs if I consult my current testing
> > > man page for mailname:
> > > 
> > >   The file /etc/mailname is a plain ASCII configuration file, which on a
> > >   Debian system contains the visible mail name of the system.  It is
> > >   used by many different programs, usually programs that wish to send or
> > >   relay mail, and need to know the name of the system.
> > > 
> > >   The file contains only one line describing the fully qualified
> > >   domain name that the program wishing to get the mail name should use
> > >   (that is, everything after the @).
> > > 
> > > I want the visible name to be "betterworld.us", but the FQDN of the
> > > system is "corn.betterworld.us."
> > 
> > So you want "betterworld.us" in there, I think. What happens when you
> > do this?
> It works.  It had a slightly odd effect for me of sending all my mail to
> a remote system.

Very interesting. Can you explain exactly what happened? Did you have
betterworld.us in local_domains at this time?

> Here was the situation: I had an existing system, wheat.betterworld.us,
> that was my main system.  I was installing a new system,
> corn.betterworld.us, that will someday take over as primary.  Mail to
> x at betterworld.us gets routed to wheat from corn.  When I put
> betterworld.us as my /etc/mailname on corn, my mail from corn ended up
> going to wheat.  That's really fine for the interim, and once corn
> becomes  primary it will get the mail going to x at betterworld.us.
> (Actually, I added some routers since to fiddle with this).
> I go into this odd setup just to clarify what the effect of this
> configuration was, since you asked what happened.

Actually, this setup doesn't seem odd at all to me. I don't see any
problems, but since you had problems, things are weird and unclear to


Marc Haber         | "I don't trust Computers. They | Mailadresse im Header
Mannheim, Germany  |  lose things."    Winona Ryder | Fon: *49 621 72739834
Nordisch by Nature |  How to make an American Quilt | Fax: *49 621 72739835

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