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3.18 Examining Default Values

Sometimes you may need to check what are the default settings of the mailfromd binary and what values it uses actually. Both tasks are accomplished using the --show-defaults option. When used alone, it shows the settings actually in use (default values, eventually modified by your configuration settings). When used together with --no-config, it displays the compiled defaults.

The output of mailfromd --show-defaults looks like this:

version:                   9.0
script file:               /etc/mailfromd.mfl
preprocessor:              /usr/bin/m4 -s -DWITH_DKIM -DWITH_MFMOD
user:                      mail
statedir:                  /var/lib/mailfromd
socket:                    mailfrom
default syslog:            blocking
include path:              /etc/mailfromd:/usr/share/mailfromd/include:
module path:               /usr/share/mailfromd:
mfmod path:                /usr/lib/mailfromd
optional features:         DKIM, mfmod, STARTTLS
supported database types:  gdbm, bdb
default database type:     bdb
greylist database:         /var/lib/mailfromd/greylist.db
greylist expiration:       86400
tbf database:              /var/lib/mailfromd/tbf.db
tbf expiration:            86400
rate database:             /var/lib/mailfromd/rates.db
rate expiration:           86400
cache database:            /var/lib/mailfromd/mailfromd.db
cache positive expiration: 604800
cache negative expiration: 86400

The above format, called human-readable, with two-column output and long lines split across several physical lines, is used if mailfromd is linked with GNU libmailutils library version 3.16 or later and its standard output is connected to a terminal. Otherwise, machine-readable output format is used, in which additional whitespace is elided, and long lines are retained verbatim. This makes it possible to easily extract default values using familiar text processing tools, e.g.:

$ mailfromd --show-defaults --no-config | grep '^script file:'
script file:/etc/mailfromd.mfl
$ mailfromd --show-defaults --no-config | sed -ne '/^script file:/s///p'

The following table describes each line of the output in detail:


Program version.

script file

The script file used by the program. It is empty if the script file is not found.


Preprocessor command line. See Preprocessor. This value can be changed in configuration: See conf-preprocessor.


System user mailfromd runs as. See conf-priv.


mailfromd local state directory. See statedir.


The socket mailfromd listens on. If UNIX socket, the filename is shown. Unless it begins with ‘/’, it is relative to the local state directory. TCP sockets are shown in milter port specification.

See listen.


PID file name (relative to local state directory, unless absolute).

See pidfile.

default syslog

Syslog implementation used: either ‘blocking’, or ‘non-blocking’.

See Using non-blocking syslog. See also Logging and Debugging.

include path

Include search path. See include search path.

It can be changed from the command line, using the -I option (see General Settings), and in configuration file, using the include-path statement (see include-path).

module path

Search path for MFL modules. see module search path.

It can be changed from the command line, using the -P (--module-path) option (see General Settings), and in configuration file, using the module-path statement (see module-path).

mfmod path

Search path for dynamically loaded modules. see mfmod-path.

optional features

Comma-delimited list of optional features, included to mailfromd at compile time. It can contain the following feature names:

GeoIP2See Geolocation functions.
mfmodSee Dynamically Loaded Modules.
supported database types

Comma-delimited list of supported database types. See Databases. These types can be used as scheme prefixes in database names (see DBM scheme).

default database type

Type of the DBM used by default. See Databases.

greylist database
greylist expiration

File name and record expiration time of the greylisting database. See greylist database.

tbf database
tbf expiration

File name and record expiration time of the token-bucket filter rate-limiting database. See tbf database.

rate database
rate expiration

See rate database File name and record expiration time of the legacy rate-limiting database. See Rate limiting functions.

cache database
cache positive expiration
cache negative expiration

File name and record expiration times of the call-out cache database. See cache database.

The database settings can be changed using conf-database.

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