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Postfix: The Definitive Guide by Kyle D. Dent

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Mail Delivery

Postfix uses the concept of address classes when determining which destinations to accept for delivery and how the delivery takes place. The main address classes are local , virtual alias, virtual mailbox, and relay. Destination addresses that do not fall into one of these classes are delivered over the network by the SMTP client (assuming it was received by an authorized client). Depending on the address class, the queue manager calls the appropriate delivery agent to handle the message.

Local Delivery

The local delivery agent handles mail for users with a shell account on the system where Postfix is running. Domain names for local delivery are listed in the mydestination parameter. Messages sent to a user at any of the mydestination domains are delivered to the individual shell account for the user. In the simple case, the local delivery agent deposits an email message into the local message store. It also checks aliases and users' .forward files to see if local messages should be delivered elsewhere. See Chapter 7 for more information on local delivery.

When a message is to be forwarded elsewhere, it is resubmitted to Postfix for delivery to the new address. If there are temporary problems delivering the message, the delivery agent notifies the queue manager to mark the message for a future delivery attempt and store it in the deferred queue. Permanent problems cause the queue manager to bounce the message back to the original sender.

Virtual Alias Messages ...

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