MTA in ubuntu deskop
lamont.jones at ubuntu.com
Mon Feb 7 20:04:41 CST 2005
This was kicked around at the tech board meeting, but I wanted to get a
little more widespread discussion before I just did it...
Feedback has shown that the choice of MTA is rather religious (duh) ,and
that users expect that an MTA, if present, will actually work for them.
Sadly, the postfix in the standard install fails this expectation, since
it's installed to do only local mail delivery, per base-install policy.
At a high level, the plan is thus:
1) Move postfix to ship seed, and replace it with nothing. That's
right, no /usr/sbin/sendmail on the desktop until the user installs it.
THIS WILL HAPPEN THIS WEEK. (before feature freeze...)
2) Change anacron, at, and cron to abuse the interactive upgrade hooks
(http://www.ubuntu.com/wiki/InteractiveUpgradeHooks) to deliver
output to the user if sendmail isn't there or fails to execute.
QUESTION: does this want a global config file to tell these fine
programs to use the hooks unconditionally, or should they just
automatically switch to using the MTA when it arrives?
This will happen post-feature-freeze. If this runs into challenges,
modify the programs to warn the user that they won't get output from
their command unless they install a mail transport agent.
3) The other packages are seed changes only, and will be done as part of
#1, before feature freeze.
There was some discussion of delivering a minimalist mail delivery agent
as part of ubuntu-base, but that still leaves us with issue #2 above,
and concensus seemed to be that we would not do it.
At a lower level, here are the packages, and what changes in them:
The following packages Provide: mail-transport-agent:
postfix Move to ship seed, restore the questions needed for full
configuration at install time. Change all of the other
Depend/Recommend: postfix | mail-transport-agent
rather than exim4 | mail-transport-agent
The following packages Recommend: mail-transport-agent:
cron If /usr/sbin/sendmail isn't there, then cron generates an
error and exits, discarding the job output.
Crontab should issue a warning when installing a crontab
(either new or editing) if /usr/sbin/sendmail is not
procmail Move to ship seed.
The following packages Depend: mail-transport-agent:
anacron Behavior is the same as cron, same changes
at Behavior is the same as cron, same changes
lsb Move to ship seed, document that one needs to install
lsb to have an LSB compliant system.
mailx Move to ship seed
mutt Move to ship seed
Lastly, the following package Depends: mail-transport-agent in error (it
doesn't actually use it anymore):
popularity-contest fix dependency
LaMont "that postfix guy" Jones
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