procmail has stopped working

David Hart ubuntu at
Fri Nov 10 01:41:30 UTC 2006

On Thu, Nov 09, 2006 at 06:25:13PM -0500, Stephen R Laniel wrote:
> On Thu, Nov 09, 2006 at 11:14:54PM +0000, Matthew East wrote:
> > I am a new user of procmail, so I don't really understand much about
> > it... I made some recipes to filter spam (I installed spamassassin 3.1.7
> > as a local copy) and it was working really well. But today I was
> > fiddling around, and suddenly it stopped working - nothing gets filtered
> > at all, and there is nothing in my procmail log since it stopped
> > working. My ~/.procmailrc file is:
> > 
> >
> > 
> > Can anyone see what is wrong?
> Offhand, no. Turn on logging verbosity -- VERBOSE=yes .
> You'll find that is helps diagnose many a problem. (Likewise
> for ssh, incidentally: 'ssh -v' is super-handy.)

I'll second the above and suggest a little more.

(Warning: I've never used procmail on maildirs ;-)  The following is
from your ~/.procmailrc:

  * ^(To|Cc).*ubuntu-news at
  * ^(To|Cc).*ubuntu-announce at
  * ^(To|Cc).*ubuntu-devel-announce at

The above doesn't do what I think you meant it to.  Multiple condition
lines (the ones beginning with *) are ANDed.  The above means:
if a single email goes to ubuntu-news AND ubuntu-announce AND
ubuntu-devel-announce then put it in .Ubuntu.News/

What I think you mean is OR:

  * ^(To|Cc).*(ubuntu-news|ubuntu-announce|ubuntu-devel-announce)

(Note you only need quote enough of the address to ensure it's unique
for your mailbox.)

Using the macro TO_ will catch more destinations addresses than (To|Cc)
(check 'man procmailrc').

But probably the most usful thing is to split your ~/.procmailrc up into
separate files when you have more than just a few rules, thus:


This way you can easily add and/or isolate a few rules at a time -
it makes debugging much easier.

David Hart <ubuntu at>

More information about the ubuntu-users mailing list