procmail question

Francisco Borges francisco.borges at
Tue Nov 18 09:33:39 UTC 2008

On Mon, Nov 17, 2008 at 8:50 PM, Linda <haniganwork at> wrote:

> >
> > You're right. Knowledge of maildir! I forgot that mailboxes are created
> > on the fly, at least they are in my Alpine app.
> >
> >
> I've tried all the suggestions but nothing is working. I have everything
> as simple as possible to try to get it working before I move forward. I
> suspect the problem is that maybe the .procmailrc is not really being
> consulted. At first I thought it must be since I coduld change from mbox
> to maildir. However it seems if /var/mail/$USER is there fetchmail
> places the messages in maildir form even without the .procmailrc in place
> Here is what I have for .fetchmailrc
> poll isp.address protocol POP3 user username with password userpassword
> mda "procmail -d username"
> fetchall
> So is something in this the cause of the problem?

I haven't had to work directly with procmail in years. The hints I would
give you are:

- Consider using maildrop. While I haven't used myself, it seems like a
reasonable alternative to procmail's madness.

- Use fetchmail's logging ("--logfile <filename> ") to discover what is
going on with fetchmail.

If using procmail:

- Do create the maildir sub-dirs yourself, the person who said these are
created for you seemed to be talking about *Alpine*. AFAIK procmail does not
create the maildir sub-dirs.

- Check the permissions of the .procmailrc file, if the file is deemed
insecure, it won't be used.

- Go to this page: this is the
best page of procmail tips there is. There you'll find a shell script to
test your procmailrc file if you are really
going to use procmail, you'll need something like this.

- Get procmail to log what it does as well. Timo's page should show you how
to do that.

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