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MAILER.CONF(5) FreeBSD File Formats Manual MAILER.CONF(5)

configuration file for mailwrapper(8)

The file /etc/mail/mailer.conf contains a series of lines of the form
name program [
arguments ...
The first word of each line is the name of a program invoking mailwrapper(8). (For example, on a typical system /usr/sbin/sendmail would be a symbolic link to mailwrapper(8), as would newaliases(1) and mailq(1). Thus, name might be “sendmail” or “newaliases” etc.)
The second word of each line is the name of the program to actually execute when the first name is invoked.
The further arguments, if any, are passed to the program, followed by the arguments mailwrapper(8) was called with.
The file may also contain comment lines, denoted by a ‘#’ mark in the first column of any line.


This example shows how to set up mailer.conf to invoke the traditional sendmail(8) program:
# Execute the "real" sendmail program located in 
# /usr/libexec/sendmail/sendmail 
sendmail	/usr/libexec/sendmail/sendmail 
mailq		/usr/libexec/sendmail/sendmail 
newaliases	/usr/libexec/sendmail/sendmail
Using Postfix (from ports) to replace sendmail(8):
# Emulate sendmail using postfix 
sendmail	/usr/local/sbin/sendmail 
mailq		/usr/local/sbin/sendmail 
newaliases	/usr/local/sbin/sendmail
Using Exim (from ports) to replace sendmail(8):
# Emulate sendmail using exim 
sendmail	/usr/local/sbin/exim 
mailq		/usr/local/sbin/exim -bp 
newaliases	/usr/bin/true 
rmail		/usr/local/sbin/exim -i -oee
Using mini_sendmail (from ports) to replace sendmail(8):
# Send outgoing mail to a smart relay using mini_sendmail 
sendmail	/usr/local/bin/mini_sendmail -srelayhost
Using dma(8) to replace sendmail(8):
# Execute dma instead of sendmail 
sendmail	/usr/libexec/dma 
mailq		/usr/libexec/dma 
newaliases	/usr/libexec/dma 
rmail		/usr/libexec/dma

mail(1), mailq(1), newaliases(1), dma(8), mailwrapper(8), sendmail(8)
postfix(1) (ports/mail/postfix), dma(8) (ports/mail/dma), exim(8) (ports/mail/exim), mini_sendmail(8) (ports/mail/mini_sendmail)

mailer.conf appeared in NetBSD 1.4.

Perry E. Metzger <>

The entire reason this program exists is a crock. Instead, a command for how to submit mail should be standardized, and all the "behave differently if invoked with a different name" behavior of things like mailq(1) should go away.
December 26, 2017 FreeBSD 12.0-RELEASE

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