[Dovecot] RC7: its issues or mine?

David Lee t.d.lee at durham.ac.uk
Mon Aug 21 19:43:44 EEST 2006

On Mon, 21 Aug 2006, Chris Wakelin wrote:

> David Lee wrote:
> > [...]
> > But the mere act of an IMAP "login" commands creates a directory (empty)
> > with the liternal name of ~ (tilde).  (An IMAP 'list "Mail" "*"' command
> > successfully finds the usr folders in the 'Mail' subdirectory of the
> > user's home directory.)
> >
> > It's almost as if the 'default_mail_env' is telling it to create (literal)
> > '~' before realising that this is shorthand (as in C-shell) for home
> > directory.
> >
> Hmm. Could you try using "~/" or "%h" instead of "~"?

Yes, both these seem to cure it.  Many thanks!  (Is it documented, and
thus did I miss it?)

> > 2. We have some Pine usage in our UNIX cluster.  Historically this has
> > taken advantage of the Pine "rsh mailmachine /etc/rimapd" ability to avoid
> > the need for the password: pre-authentication etc.  (Yes, we realise that
> > 'rsh' has security issues.)  But when I try making symlink "/etc/rimapd"
> > point to "/usr/dovecot/sbin/dovecot" this fails:
> >    Error: Can't use SSL key file /etc/ssl/private/dovecot.pem: Permission denied
> >
> Sounds yucky. I think the program you'd need to run is
> "/usr/dovecot/libexec/imap" rather than "dovecot" [...]

Drat.  Yes.  My mistake.  That's looking better, but it still fails...

> [...] but you'll need to
> supply it some environment variables. I've never tried though.

... with an error message (which I'm line-wrapping here with "\"):

   imap(<username>): Error: Ambiguous mail location setting, don't know \
   what to do with it: /var/spool/mail/<username> (try prefixing it \
   with mbox: or maildir:)
   imap(<username): Fatal: Failed to create storage with data: \

So this mechanism not finding the "default_mail_env" (with our peculiar
sub-dir specification) from the config file.  Perhaps more likely it's not
finding the config file itself at all.

How do other Pine-using sites handle the "rsh ... /etc/rimapd" issue?

> One thing to watch though, is that you don't have any Pine 3.x users (as
> we had!) as it uses obsolete IMAP (v2!) commands not supported by
> Dovecot and they would have problems accessing folders.

Thanks for the heads-up.  Our pine usage is relatively small; the only
support we offer is for our own installation, which is 4.x .  So this
issue, if it crops up at all, ought to be broadly manageable.

(Thanks also for your other observations, which I'll work on.)


:  David Lee                                I.T. Service          :
:  Senior Systems Programmer                Computer Centre       :
:                                           Durham University     :
:  http://www.dur.ac.uk/t.d.lee/            South Road            :
:                                           Durham DH1 3LE        :
:  Phone: +44 191 334 2752                  U.K.                  :

More information about the dovecot mailing list