The Tellsmtp Command Line Utility
The Tellsmtp executable provides a simple universal command
line utility for controlling and monitoring the DSMTP system. Of special
note is the 'reload'
command, which makes DSMTP reload it's configuration file. It is often used
after manually editing the config file, so that you do not have to restart
DSMTP for the changes made to take effect.
It is invoked with the command line:
The ip parameter following the -n switch tells
Tellsmtp which IP number to use when connecting to DMail. The default is
simply to connect to the machine which Tellsmtp is executed from.
tellsmtp [-n ip] [-p
port] [-i conf] <command> [parameters...]
The port parameter following the -p switch
tells Tellsmtp which port to use when connecting to DMail. The default
The -i switch tells Tellsmtp to look for appropriate
settings in the DMail config file specified by the conf parameter
(including full pathname).
The <command> parameter can take the following
forms, as outlined below.
clear_cache_all - tells DSMTP to clear it's cache of user lookups (and the forward rules etc. that they returned).
config <setting> - shows what DSMTP currently has set for that 'setting'
filters - shows all active mail_filter, or filter_file commands
help Displays a brief summary of Tellsmtp commands
log_level sets the amount of information logged
monitors shows the IP numbers DSMTP is currently remote logging to
profile - shows a profile of code statistics.
quiet toggles 'quiet' status, i.e. does/does not print minimal operating information to stdout
reload tells DSMTP to reload its config file
register instigates registration function, creates register.txt
resume tells DSMTP to resume processing outgoing mail
scriptfile.msc sends the script file named
sendlog tells DSMTP to send live log info
showchans shows a list of current TCPIP channels and their status
showsend shows a list of current outgoing TCPIP channels.
shutdown starts exit of DSMTP in a reasonably civilized fashion
smtp what follows this command is passed directly to DMail
status causes status of DSMTP to be echoed to screen
suspend stops DSMTP from attempting to process outgoing mail
tryall requeues all outgoing messages to be processed immediately
Detailed List of Tellsmtp Commands:
tells DSMTP to clear it's cache of user lookups (and the
forward rules etc. that they returned).
Displays a brief summary of Tellsmtp commands.
When given the register command, Tellsmtp will execute
the DMail registration function. This asks questions which will allow DMail
to be registered. A register.txt file is created for emailing to NetWin.
Payment details are encrypted for safe transfer to NetWin Ltd. No parameters
If the <command> parameter ends in .msc, Tellsmtp
assumes that a Tellsmtp scriptfile has been specified. It will then load
the scriptfile, and pass the lines in it directly to DMail. Each line will
be sent to DMail exactly as it is found in the textfile. The only exception to this
is when the line starts with '#'. In this case, Tellsmtp will not
wait for a response before sending the next line. This is mostly for use
when sending the DATA lines of a message. Because of this flexibility,
a scriptfile may be written to test any aspect of DMail's operation. A
simple scriptfile to deliver a message locally would read as follows:
#Subject: This is a
The hash symbol must be present at the beginning of all
lines between a DATA command and the '.' following it, or Tellsmtp will
wait (forever) for a reply, and DMail will wait (forever) for more data.
Assuming that the above script is saved as 'test.msc', the command
will send the scriptfile to
DMail (or whoever is listening to the port Tellsmtp is talking to). No
parameters are required.
The smtp command talks directly to DMail, with Tellsmtp
pretending to be an SMTP client. Any arguments following the smtp command
will be concatenated (separated by a space) and sent to DMail, followed
by a quit command. DMail's responses will be echoed by Tellsmtp. This command
is of little use, as it will only work with a very small number of SMTP
tellsmtp smtp helo test.domain
This command will cause Tellsmtp to echo status information
sent to it by DMail. Depending on what DMail has been up to, several screens
of information may be displayed. It is a good idea to redirect Tellsmtp's
output to a file when using this command, e.g.
tellsmtp status > a.a
outputs the status to the file, a.a.
If DMail is behaving oddly, but not crashing, the output from
a Tellsmtp status command may help us to find the problem.
Here are some details of the information that it prints out. Don't worry
if you can't understand some of it.
DSMTP v2.7l status as at Tue Nov 09 12:35:05 1999
Uptime: 0 days, 16 hours, 48 minutes
Messages received: (number of messages received by DSMTP during the uptime
Messages local/remote: (number of msgs with both local + remote rcpt lines)
Messages delivered: (number of queued files delivered locally)
Messages sent on: (number of queued files delivered with rcpt lines that
were all for remote addresses)
Messages gave up: (number trashed for some reason (unkown rcpt etc))
Messages pending: (number still sitting in the message queue)
Messages to unknown: (other people talking to this server gave this many bad recipient lines)
Messages incomplete: (messages where DSMTP could not get the entire message)
Messages rejected: (number of messages rejected for whatever reason)
Total in: (the total number of messages that arrived at dsmtp's door)
Total out: (a ballpark figure of the total number of messages that DSMTP dealt with)
File Rty Time Left Busy Domain
(This is a list of queued files which are currently in
the memory queue as set by the setting max_queue)
15236 000 -942172505 1 aol.com
15215 000 -942172505 1 aol.com
15188 001 000007140 0 companyx.com
(using the last one as an example,
15188: is the queue files number, i.e. you will find
q_15188.itm and .idx files in the work_path
001: rcpt lines in this queue file have been tried once
000007140: time in seconds until this is next tried. If a
large negative number this message will be tried as soon as
DSMTP can get to it - e.g. if you do a tellsmtp tryall command
all messages will be set like this.
0: Is the queue file currently being looked at, 0 is NO, 1 is Yes.
companyx.com: the domain of the first rcpt line in the queue file, to
give you an indication of who it is addressed to.
TCP channel history
(The column on the left is a counter of the number of times
each close/open of a TCPIP channel occurred for the detailed reason,
some reason relate directly to a setting in dmail.conf as noted below.)
19717 Command failed: RCPT Unknown user
77598 Connection opened:(in)
68534 Connection closed:(in) it was told to (other end gave QUIT command)
53729 Connection refused: banned IP number (connecting ip address matched a ban_ip setting)
12144 Connection closed:(out) DSMTP told it to (dsmtp does this when finished with a normal connection)
2936 Connection closed:(in) by remote end (other end closed the connection on DSMTP)
7692 Connection closed:(in) timeout (dsmtp waited tcp_timeout seconds for a response and then closed connection)
3461 Connection closed:(out) unexpected isclosing() (connection was aborted, other end crashed, line broke ...)
15604 Connection opened:(out) processing qfile (dsmtp opens connection as q file was to non-local domains)
1436 Command rejected: remote domain, no relaying (got a non-local rcpt line from a remote domain and DSMTP coudl not allow it to relay)
014 Command rejected: weird RCPT (bad syntax in rcpt to line)
013 Command rejected: untimely RCPT (order fo SMTP protocol was not followed by sending device)
8054 Command rejected: too many RCPTs (number of rcpt lines greater than setting, max_rcpt)
287 Connection refused: accept() failed (remote end opened channel, DSMTP responded but could not connect to other end)
294 Command rejected: wierd FROM (bad syntax of from line given)
060 Command rejected: DATA no valid rcpt fields (rejected connection at data stage because no valid destination addresses were given)
1150 Command rejected: DATA fromip_max limit hit (sending ip address had sent more than allowed messages this hour, as set by fromip_max)
006 Command rejected: premature FROM (sender got SMTP protocol around the wrong way)
003 Command rejected: DATA no valid from field (we did not get a valid FROM field but the sender still tried to send)
001 Command rejected: Found possible MX loop (message had a lot of rcpt lines to a domain that resolved to this box but we did not have a host_domain or vdomain setting for it)
004 Command rejected: unsupported AUTH (sender tried to use an AUTH type that DSMTP does not support)
This diagnostic command will make DSMTP respond with a list of TCPIP channels that
have been used since startup. List entries show the channel's current state
and how long the channel has been in that sate. Channels which will not timeout (e.g. those
sending live log updates, see sendlog) are marked as such.
The basic layout is:
chan[v] used=w, state=x, socket=y, ip=a.b.c.d,
last active z seconds ago
The used and state columns are not of use to sysadmins so simply ignore them.
Here are three lines from an example output with explanation:
chan used=2, state=1, socket=132, ip=127.0.0.1,
last active 8 seconds ago (receiving loglines)
chan used=2, state=6, socket=133, ip=126.96.36.199,
last active 1 seconds ago
chan used=0, state=0, socket closed, ip=188.8.131.52,
dead for 8652 seconds
The first line shows that something is connected from the IP address,
127.0.0.1, on DSMTP's first channel using the operating system's TCPIP
socket 132. At the end of the line the words '(receiving loglines)'
indicate that it is a connection from something that has asked DSMTP to
copy any lines that it logs out to it on this . In this example it is the DMAdmin
windows GUI admin tool that is connected. The line also shows that something
(DSMTP or DMAdmin) talked on that port 8 seconds ago.
The second line is an active TCPIP connection from an email client or SMTP
server at IP address 184.108.40.206.
The last line shows that a maximum of 150 channels have been opened
at some point. Because it is marked as 'socket closed', you know that that
connection is no longer open, and dstmp has not had to use that channel
again since something connected from the IP address 220.127.116.11 8652 seconds
Inactive connections will timeout after the time specified by the setting,
This command will cause DSMTP to exit in a reasonably
civilized fashion, but will cause it to do so without any further confirmation
from anyone (i.e. immediately)
This command will cause DSMTP to crash. Used mainly for
testing how well it recovers from...ermm...a crash. Use at your own risk.
Actually, try not to use at all :-)
This command will make DSMTP reload its config file. This
is very useful for making changes to DSMTP on the fly, without having to
shut it down and restart it. Alterations to significant commands such as
drop_path can be made, so take care when using this command. The only setting
which will have no effect if reloaded is smtp_port.
NOTE : If you have modified a dmail.conf setting which
is relevant to both DPOP and DSMTP, it is necessary to reload both
servers individually with their reload configuration file commands, e.g.
tellsmtp reload and tellpop reload. DMAdmin
will do this automatically, but note that you can send the reload command from the command list
in DMAdmin whenever you wish.
If you have an exceptionally large dmail.conf file this process of reloading could take 30
seconds. So larger sites should probably schedule reloads for every x hours and then let
customers know that their changes won't take effect until after the next scheduled reload.
This command will change DSMTP's log level during runtime.
It will not cause DSMTP's config file to be re-written, so next time DSMTP
is run, it will use the log level setting found there. This command is
useful for closely observing a particular transaction DSMTP may be about
The available log levels are:
If DSMTP is behaving unusually, run it with the verbose option first. This
should give enough information to reveal whether or not it is a problem
with the config file. If all else fails, run it with the debug option.
If DSMTP is crashing or doing very peculiar things, the most useful things
to NetWin support are the config file and the log file.
|| the only
information written will be errors, warnings, socket read and write information
and minimal progress information.
|| as well
as the error information, this setting gives much more progress information,
as well as file open and close calls.
|| as well
as the info information, this setting gives a whole lot of internal status
information, function calls...all sorts of stuff. However, it may slow
down operation slightly and can produce large log files, so use sparingly.
Info is the default setting, and the usual setting for operating in.
For more information see the Logging
of information and error messages section.
This command toggles DSMTP's "quiet" status, i.e. whether
or not it prints anything aside from minimal operating information to stdout.
On some systems (Windows NT in particular) this will result in significant
performance gains. If DSMTP is running quietly, critical messages such
as disk full warnings will still be displayed.
This command tells DSMTP to send the q_<num>.idx and
q_<num>.itm files back to tellsmtp.
This command tells DSMTP to kill the q_<num>.* files
and remove them from its internal queue. Use this in conjunction with showq
to remove troublesome or unwanted messages.
This command will print a list of the message filters you currently have in DMail.
This will print a list of all filters that are currently being used, on some versions you may
have to use a * instead of no argument.
tellsmtp filters 5
This will print the 5th rule.
This command will stop DSMTP from processing outgoing
mail. DSMTP will stay in this mode until told otherwise, so use with caution,
as incoming mail will still be accepted, so a backlog of q files will
This command will tell DSMTP to resume outgoing message
processing. It undoes what suspend does.
This command will cause DSMTP to send a copy of all its
logfile output across the TCP connection opened by the sender of the sendlog
This command tells DSMTP to requeue and immediately retry
all pending outgoing messages. Useful mainly if there has been a network
outage of some form.
This command will list all current sendlog
TCPIP connections, e.g. connections from remote admin tools such as
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Command Summary List