[exim.git] / src / README
1 $Cambridge: exim/src/README,v 1.1 2004/10/06 14:12:40 ph10 Exp $
4 --------------------------------------
6 Copyright (c) 1995 - 2004 University of Cambridge.
7 See the file NOTICE for conditions of use and distribution.
9 There is a book about Exim by Philip Hazel called "The Exim SMTP Mail Server",
10 published by UIT Cambridge in May 2003. This is the official guide for Exim 4.
11 The current edition covers release 4.10 and a few later extensions.
13 The O'Reilly book about Exim ("Exim The Mail Transfer Agent" by Philip Hazel)
14 covers Exim 3, which is now deprecated. Exim 4 has a large number of changes
15 from Exim 3, though the basic structure and philosophy remains the same. The
16 older book may be helpful for the background, but a lot of the detail has
17 changed, so it is likely to be confusing to newcomers.
19 There is a web site at; this contains details of the
20 mailing list
22 A copy of the Exim FAQ should be available from the same source that you used
23 to obtain the Exim distribution. Additional formats for the documentation
24 (PostScript, PDF, Texinfo, and HTML) should also be available there.
28 -----------------
30 Unpacking the tar file should produce a single directory called exim-<version>,
31 containing the following files and directories:
33 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS some acknowledgments
34 CHANGES a conventional file name; it indirects to some files in doc/
35 LICENCE the GNU General Public Licence
36 Local/ an empty directory for local configuration files
37 Makefile top level Makefile
38 NOTICE notice about conditions of use
39 OS/ directory containing OS-specific files
40 README this file
41 README.UPDATING special notes about updating from previous versions
42 doc/ directory of documentation files
43 exim_monitor/ directory of source files for the Exim monitor
44 scripts/ directory of scripts used in the build process
45 src/ directory of source files
46 util/ directory of independent utilities
48 Please see the documentation files for full instructions on how to build,
49 install, and run Exim. For straightforward installations on operating systems
50 to which Exim has already been ported, the building process is as follows:
52 . Ensure that the top-level Exim directory (e.g. exim-4.40) is the current
53 directory (containing the files and directories listed above).
55 . Edit the file called src/EDITME and put the result in a new file called
56 Local/Makefile. There are comments in src/EDITME telling you what the various
57 parameters are. You must at least provide values for BIN_DIRECTORY,
58 CONFIGURE_FILE, EXIM_USER and EXIM_GROUP (if EXIM_USER is numeric), and it is
59 recommended that SPOOL_DIRECTORY also be defined here if it is a fixed path.
61 . There are a number of additional parameters whose defaults can also be
62 overridden by additions to Local/Makefile. The basic defaults are in
63 OS/Makefile-Default, but these settings are overridden for some operating
64 systems by values on OS/Makefile-<osname>. The most commonly-required change
65 is probably the setting of CC, which defines the command to run the C
66 compiler, and which defaults to gcc. To change it to cc, add the following
67 line to Local/Makefile:
69 CC=cc
71 If you are running the Berkeley DB package as your dbm library, then it is
72 worth putting USE_DB=yes in Local/Makefile, to get Exim to use the native
73 interface. This is the default for some operating systems. See
74 doc/dbm.discuss.txt for discussion on dbm libraries.
76 . If you want to compile the Exim monitor, edit the file called
77 exim_monitor/EDITME and put the result in a file called Local/eximon.conf.
78 If you are not going to compile the Exim monitor, you should have commented
79 out the line starting EXIM_MONITOR= when creating Local/Makefile. There are
80 comments in exim_monitor/EDITME about the values set therein, but in this
81 case everything can be defaulted if you wish.
83 . Type "make". This will determine what your machine's architecture and
84 operating system are, and create a build directory from those names (e.g.
85 "build-SunOS5-sparc"). Symbolic links are created from the build directory
86 to the source directory. A configured make file called <build-dir>/makefile
87 is then created, and "make" then goes on to use this to build various
88 binaries and scripts inside the build directory.
90 . Type "make install", while running as root, to install the binaries,
91 scripts, and a default configuration file. To see what this command is
92 going to do before risking it, run "../scripts/exim_install -n" (not as
93 root) from within the build directory.
95 . When you are ready to try running Exim, see the section entitled "Testing"
96 in the chapter called "Building and Installing Exim" in doc/spec.txt, or in
97 one of the other forms of the documentation.
99 . Running the install script does NOT replace /usr/sbin/sendmail or
100 /usr/lib/sendmail with a link to Exim. That step you must perform by hand
101 when you are satisfied that Exim is running correctly.
103 . Note that the default configuration refers to an alias file called
104 /etc/aliases. It used to be the case that every Unix had that file, because
105 it was the Sendmail default. These days, there are systems that don't have
106 /etc/aliases, so you might need to set it up. Your aliases should at least
107 include an alias for "postmaster".
109 . Consider notifying users of the change of MTA. Exim has different
110 capabilities, and there are various operational differences, such as stricter
111 adherence to the RFCs than some MTAs, and differences in the text of
112 messages produced by various command-line options.
114 . The default configuration file will use your host's fully qualified name (as
115 obtained from the uname() function) as the only local mail domain and as the
116 domain which is used to qualify unqualified local mail addresses. See the
117 comments in the default configuration file if you want to change these.
119 The operating systems currently supported are: AIX, BSD/OS (aka BSDI), Darwin
120 (Mac OS X), DGUX, FreeBSD, GNU/Hurd, GNU/Linux, HI-OSF (Hitachi), HP-UX, IRIX,
121 MIPS RISCOS, NetBSD, OpenBSD, QNX, SCO, SCO SVR4.2 (aka UNIX-SV), Solaris (aka
122 SunOS5), SunOS4, Tru64-Unix (formerly Digital Unix, formerly DEC-OSF1), Ultrix,
123 and Unixware. However, code is not available for determining system load
124 averages on Ultrix. There are also configuration files for compiling Exim in
125 the Cygwin environment that can be installed on systems running Windows.
126 However, the documentation supplied with the distribution does not contain any
127 information about running Exim in the Cygwin environment.
130 ******* Modifying the building process ******
132 Instructions for overriding the build-time options for Exim are given in the
133 manual. You should never have to modify any of the supplied files; it should be
134 possible to override everything that is necessary by creating suitable files in
135 the Local directory. This means that you won't need to redo your modifications
136 for the next release of Exim. If you find you can't avoid changing some other
137 file, let me know and I'll see if I can find a way of making that unnecessary.
139 Briefly, the building process concatenates a number of files in order to
140 construct its working makefile. If <ostype> and <archtype> are the operating
141 system and architecture types respectively, the files used are:
143 OS/Makefile-Default
144 OS/Makefile-<ostype>
145 Local/Makefile
146 Local/Makefile-<ostype>
147 Local/Makefile-<archtype>
148 Local/Makefile-<ostype>-<archtype>
149 OS/Makefile-Base
151 Of the Local/* files, only Local/Makefile is required to exist; the rest are
152 optional. Because of the way "make" works, values set in later files override
153 values set in earlier ones. Thus you can set up general options that are
154 overridden for specify operating systems and/or architectures if you wish.
159 Exim 4 won't work with some versions of Linux if you put its spool directory on
160 an NFS partition. You get an error about "directory sync failed". This is
161 because of a bug in Linux NFS. A fix has been promised in due course. It is in
162 any case much better to put Exim's spool directory on local disc.
164 If you get an error complaining about the lack of functions such as dbm_open()
165 when building Exim, the problem is that it hasn't been able to find a DBM
166 library. See the file doc/dbm.discuss.txt for a discussion about the various
167 DBM libraries.
169 Different versions of Linux come with different DBM libraries, stored in
170 different places. As well as setting USE_DB=yes in Local/Makefile if Berkeley
171 DB is in use, it may also be necessary to set a value in DBMLIB to specify the
172 inclusion of the DBM library, for example: DBMLIB=-ldb or DBMLIB=-lgdbm.
174 If you are using RedHat 7.0, which has DB3 as its DBM library, you need to
175 install the db-devel package before building Exim. This will have a name like
176 db3-devel-3.1.14-16.i386.rpm (but check which release of DB3 you have).
178 The building scripts now distinguish between versions of Linux with the older
179 libc5 and the more recent ones that use libc6. In the latter case, USE_DB and
180 -ldb are the default settings, because DB is standard with libc6.
182 It appears that with glibc-2.1.x (a minor libc upgrade), they have standardised
183 on Berkeley DB2 (instead of DB1 in glibc-2.0.x). If you want to get DB1 back,
184 you need to set
186 INCLUDE=-I/usr/include/db1
187 DBMLIB=-ldb1
189 in your Local/Makefile. If you omit DBMLIB=-ldb1 Exim will link successfully
190 using the DB1 compatibility interface to DB2, but it will expect the file
191 format to be that of DB2, and so will not be able to read existing DB1 files.
196 On FreeBSD there is a file called /etc/mail/mailer.conf which selects what to
197 run for various MTA calls. Instead of changing /usr/sbin/sendmail, you should
198 edit this file instead, to read something like this:
200 sendmail /usr/exim/bin/exim
201 send-mail /usr/exim/bin/exim
202 mailq /usr/exim/bin/exim -bp
203 newaliases /usr/bin/true
205 You will most probably need to add the line:
207 daily_status_include_submit_mailq="NO" # No separate 'submit' queue
209 to /etc/periodic.conf. This stops FreeBSD running the command "mailq -Ac"
210 (which Exim doesn't understand) to list a separate submit queue (which Exim
211 doesn't have).
213 If you are using FreeBSD prior to 3.0-RELEASE, and you are not using the ports
214 mechanism to install Exim, then you should install the perl5 package
215 (/usr/local/bin/perl) and use that instead of perl in the base system, which is
216 perl4 up until 3.0-RELEASE. If you are using the ports mechanism, this is
217 handled for you.
219 If you are upgrading from version 2.11 of Exim or earlier, and you are using
220 DBM files, and you did not previously have USE_DB=yes in your Local/Makefile,
221 then you will either have to put USE_DB=no in your Local/Makefile or (better)
222 rebuild your DBM data files. The default for FreeBSD has been changed to
223 USE_DB=yes, since FreeBSD comes with Berkeley DB. However, using the native DB
224 interface means that the data files no longer have the ".db" extension.
228 ******* IMPORTANT FOR Tru64 (aka Digital Unix aka DEC-OSF1) USERS *******
230 The default compiler may not recognize ANSI C by default. You may have to set
232 CC=cc
233 CFLAGS=-std1
235 in Local/Makefile in order to compile Exim. A user reported another small
236 problem with this operating system: In the file /usr/include/net/if.h a
237 semicolon was missing at the end of line 143.
241 ******* IMPORTANT FOR SCO USERS *******
243 The building scripts assume the existence of the "ar" command, which is part of
244 the Development System. However, it is also possible to use the "gar" command
245 that is part of the GNU utilities that are distributed with the 5.0.7 release.
246 If you have "gar" and not "ar" you should include
248 AR=gar
250 in your Local/Makefile.
254 ******* IMPORTANT FOR Unixware 2.x USERS *******
256 Unixware does not include db/dbm/ndbm with its standard compiler (it is
257 available with /usr/ucb/cc, but that has bugs of its own). You should install
258 gcc and Berkeley DB (or another dbm library if you really insist). If you use a
259 different dbm library you will need to override the default setting of DBMLIB.
261 DB 1.85 and 2.x can be found at They have different
262 characteristics. See the discussion of dbm libraries in doc/dbm.discuss.txt. DB
263 needs to be compiled with gcc and you need a 'cc' in your path before the
264 Unixware CC to compile it.
266 Don't bother even starting to install exim on Unixware unless you have
267 installed gcc and use it for everything.
270 ******* IMPORTANT FOR SOLARIS 2.3 (SUNOS 5.3) USERS *******
272 The file /usr/include/sysexits.h does not exist on Solaris 2.3 (and presumably
273 earlier versions), though it is present in 2.4 and later versions. To compile
274 Exim on Solaris 2.3 it is necessary to include the line
278 in your Local/Makefile.
281 ******* IMPORTANT FOR IRIX USERS *******
283 There are problems with some versions of gcc on IRIX, as a result of which all
284 DNS lookups yield either or Releases of gcc after
285 (which works ok) are affected. Specifically, 2.8.* is affected, as are
286 the 2.95 series. From release 3.21 of Exim, a workaround for this problem
287 should automatically be enabled when Exim is compiled on IRIX using gcc.
289 As from version 2.03 there is IRIX-specific code in Exim to obtain a list of
290 all the IP addresses on local interfaces, including alias addresses, because
291 the standard code gives only non-alias addresses in IRIX. The code came from
292 SGI, with the comment:
294 "On 6.2 you need the libc patch to get the sysctl() stub and the networking
295 kernel patch to get the support."
297 It seems that this code doesn't work on at least some earlier versions of IRIX
298 (e.g. IRIX 5.3). If you can't compile under IRIX and the problem appears to
299 relate to sysctl(), try commenting or #ifdef-ing out all the code in the
300 file OS/os.c-IRIX.
303 ******* IMPORTANT FOR HP-UX USERS *******
305 There are two different sets of configuration files for HP-UX. Those ending in
306 HP-UX-9 are used for HP-UX version 9, and have been tested on HP-UX version
307 9.05. Those ending in HP-UX are for later releases, and have been tested on
308 HP-UX version 11.00. If you are using a version of HP-UX between 9.05 and
309 11.00, you may need to edit the file OS/os.h-HP-UX if you encounter problems
310 building Exim.
312 If you want to use the Sieve facility in Exim, the alias iso-8859-1 should be
313 added to the alias definition for iso81 in /usr/lib/nls/iconv/config.iconv. You
314 also need to add a new alias definition: "alias utf8 utf-8".
317 ******* IMPORTANT FOR QNX USERS *******
319 1. Exim makes some assumptions about the shell in the makefiles. The "normal"
320 QNX shell (ksh) will not work. You need to install "bash", which can be
321 obtained from the QNX freeware on QUICS. Install it to /usr/local/bin/bash
322 Then you need to change the SHELL definition at the top of the main Makefile
323 to SHELL=/usr/local/bin/bash. The file OS/Makefile-QNX sets the variable
324 MAKE_SHELL to /usr/local/bin/bash. If you install bash in a different place,
325 you will need to set MAKE_SHELL in your Local/Makefile in order to override
326 this.
328 2. For some strange reason make will fail at building "exim_dbmbuild" when
329 called the first time. However simply calling make a second time will solve
330 the problem. Alternatively, run "make makfile" and then "make".
333 ******* IMPORTANT FOR ULTRIX USERS *******
335 You need to set SHELL explicitly in the make call when building on ULTRIX,
336 that is, type "make SHELL=sh5".
339 ******* IMPORTANT FOR GNU/HURD USERS *******
341 GNU/Hurd doesn't (at the time of writing, June 1999) have the ioctls for
342 finding out the IP addresses of the local interfaces. You therefore have to set
343 local_interfaces yourself. Otherwise it will treat only as local.
345 Philip Hazel <>