Blue Flower



The current document on how to create a queuing server was dated so I updated it as of 10/25/2015. The new guide is located at

Saturday, 24 October 2015 15:33

Updated Rules Page

I have updated the How to add rules to spamassassin as the file was full of old and outdated rules. The walkthrough is setup and you can start using it today!

Coming in the future is a walkthrough on how to install FreeBSD on VMWare esxi 6.0.

Thursday, 08 October 2015 02:38

vqadmin is coming!

vqadmin will be a brand new walkthrough in the qmail 2.0 guide. You should see this posted before the end of October 2015.

Thank you for your support.

Sunday, 13 September 2015 00:11

Updated Guide

As of 9/12/15 I have made a few updates to the guide.

The qmail port installation is removed so everything is installed via source.

The permissions on servercert.pem have changed.

There is an additional installation of fakeroot that needs to be installed before vpopmail. This is just a new dependency.

As of this writing qmail 2.0 works on both i386 and amd64 on FreeBSD 10.2

Sunday, 09 August 2015 02:40

Qmail Changes in 2.0


For the past few weeks I have been trying very hard to get dovecot 2 to work on my system. Finally this evening I changed the vpopmail setup from maildrop delivery to dovecot delivery. The maildrop delivery option has been disabled and the vpopmail skeleton file has been updated to use the Dovecot LMDA (Local Mail Delivery Agent) and now uses dovecot rather than maildrop for the filtering. The guides have been updated to reflect the changes.

Sunday, 19 July 2015 01:26

Qmail 2.0 coming!

I have been using qmailsince 1998 and I had a website called where I had a series of articles about how to combat spam in individual articles and also my own qmail guide. The qmail guide was similar to qmailrocks but I mostly focused on running it on FreeBSD (which was 4.11 at the time I believe) and utilizing ports for the installation and upgrades. The most current guide hasn't been updated in some time and POP3 is still running on port 110 and there is no help with combating spam. I am pleased to announce that I am working on an update guide. The new qmail 2.0 guide will feature the following:

Completely secure POP3, SMTP (SSL AND TLS), and Webmail
A new guide on how to combat spam
A guide on how to configure webmail securely using Apache 2.4

This guide will require you to purchase a certificate from godaddy for your domain for SMTP, POP3 and Apache SSL. I will show you how to convert the purchased SSL Certificate to use with qmail.

The testing guide will be available for all registered users.

If you feel you have anything to contribute please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sunday, 19 July 2015 02:03

Installing Qmail - No Qmail Port

Originally when I first started modifying the qmailrocks documentation for FreeBSD my goal was to use all the qmail ports to simplify the installation. Since then the qmail port has changed to support netqmail which causes a conflict with qmail. Starting on 2/7/17 I have modified this guide so you are no longer required to install this port. This allows a much cleaner and simplified way to install qmail directly from source.

Lets start with creating groups. users, groups and needed directories:

# pw groupadd nofiles
# pw groupadd vchkpw -g 89
# pw groupadd qscand
# pw useradd vpopmail -u 89 -g vchkpw -m -d /usr/home/vpopmail -s /sbin/nologin
# pw groupadd qnofiles -g 81
# pw groupadd qmail -g 82
# pw useradd qmaild -u 82 -g 81 -m -d /var/qmail -s /nonexistent
# pw useradd alias -u 81 -g 81 -m -d /var/qmail/alias -s /nonexistent
# pw useradd qmaill -u 83 -g 82 -m -d /var/qmail -s /nonexistent
# pw useradd qmailp -u 84 -g 81 -m -d /var/qmail -s /nonexistent
# pw useradd qmailq -u 85 -g 82 -m -d /var/qmail -s /nonexistent
# pw useradd qmailr -u 86 -g 82 -m -d /var/qmail -s /nonexistent
# pw useradd qmails -u 87 -g 82 -m -d /var/qmail -s /nonexistent
# pw useradd qscand -s /sbin/nologin -d /tmp
# mkdir /var/log/qmail
# mkdir /var/log/qmail/qmail-send /var/log/qmail/dovecot /var/log/qmail/qmail-smtpd /var/log/qmail/qmail-smtpd-ssl /var/log/qmail/qmail-smtpd-tls /var/log/qmail/qmail-scanner
# chown -R qmaill:wheel /var/log/qmail
# chmod -R 750 /var/log/qmail
# mkdir -p /var/qmail/supervise
# mkdir /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-send /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-ssl /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-ssl/log/ /var/qmail/supervise/dovecot /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd/log /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-send/log /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-tls /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-tls/log/
# chmod +t /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-send /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-ssl /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-tls /var/qmail/supervise/dovecot

Now download the qmail source so we can patch it:

# cd ~root
# fetch
# tar zxvf qmail2-1.03.tar.gz

This guide has been updated to include the two patches and qmail amd64 hotfix. These are not included in the path directory. John Simpson's site is located at . I am including this link because this guide includes his patches but his site has not been updated for quite some time now. Now let's patch qmail with John's patch:

# cd qmail-1.03
# patch < patches/qmail-1.03-jms1.7.08.patch

You will get an output of files that it patched. As long as it says done at the end with no errors you can continue.

Starting with FreeBSD 9.0 the user accounting database has been changed which resulted in an incompatible change to the data structure of the database. The utmp.h header file referenced by qbiff.c no longer exists since it's been replaced by utmpx.h.

Since it would take more time or interest than I have to change qbiff to be compatible with the change, I just removed all references to qbiff in hier.c, install-big.c, and the make file. The loss of qbiff functionality isn't significant for me since it is just for mail notifications for local system users. The following commands fixes this accounting issue:

# tar zxvf patches/qmail_fix2.tgz

If you are running FreeBSD 10.3 or 11.0 on AMD64 run the following. Everyone else skip this step:

# patch < patches/qmail64patch

Now run the following commands:

# make man
# make setup check

Lets get qmail setup for your local hostname. If your local hostname is bsd.localhost, use the following:

# ./config-fast bsd.localhost

You will get a output saying it is going to add that hostname to specific qmail control files. If you would like more information as to what these specific files control, please take a look at

Now we need to run a few more qmail fixes:

# cd ~root
# mkdir qmail
# cd qmail
# fetch
# tar zxvf scripts4.tgz
# rm scripts4.tgz
# cd /var/qmail/bin
# tar zxvf ~root/qmail/qmail_bin.tgz
# cd /var/qmail/queue
# touch /var/qmail/queue/lock/sendmutex
# chown qmails:qmail /var/qmail/queue/lock/sendmutex

At this point I would not recommend deleting any of the qmail files. They really don't take up a lot of room but if you ever delete anything by accident or need to rebuild you queue, you can stop qmail and then run make setup check and then start qmail again. This by any means won't fix everything but leaving the qmail files there won't hurt a bit.

One last thing to recommend is going into /var/qmail/control/locals and making sure that file is empty. If you need a good explanation as to why to do this:

rcpthosts is used for domains that we accept mail for - mostly used for vpopmail virtual domains that reside in /home/vpopmail/domains

If rcpthosts does not exist, you are an open relay. If it exists and is empty and there is no "morercpthosts.cdb" file as well, then your server will reject all incoming mail.

locals - domains that we deliver locally - mostly used for local delivery /home/$USER/Maildir

Wednesday, 08 June 2016 20:03

Qmail Changes

This will be an up-to-date list of all changes to the qmail install. This is effective 2/12/2017:

2/12/2017: Originally when I first started modifying the qmailrocks documentation for FreeBSD, my goal was to use all the qmail ports to simplify the installation. Since then the qmail port has changed to support netqmail which causes a conflict with qmail. Starting on 2/7/17 I have modified this guide so you are no longer required to install this port. This allows a much cleaner and simplified way to install qmail directly from source.

2/6/2017: At 23:59 UTC, December 31, 2016, FreeBSD 9.3, 10.1 and 10.2 will reach end-of-life and will no longer be supported by the FreeBSD Security Officers Team.  Users of FreeBSD 9.3, 10.1 and 10.2 are strongly encouraged to
upgrade to a newer release as soon as possible. This guide supports 10.3 and 11.0.

10/17/2016: On the configuring validrcptto page I have changed the fetch mkvalidrcptto location to now be included in the scripts4.tgz file. I am unsure how long John Simpsons site will be up and have attemtped to relocate anything that was on his site to mine. I plan on supporting qmail until it completely breaks.

7/13/16: Updated the Roundcube docs to support php 5.6

6/21/16: I updated the qmail-smtpd/run file to include the following changes:

* included a section for spamdyke within the run file
* Removed the line as it's no longer being used
* Updated the RBL Listing
* Changed the MFCHECK line to 0 from 1
* Enabled the SMTP greeting by default

Special thanks to Steve Donohue for getting spamdyke working before I could.

6/8/16: Removed the reference of from the qmail_smtpd_run file. I also added a log directory for qmail-scanner in /var/log/qmail and added the default log directory in the qmail-scanner documentation. This is to maintain consistency.

5/14/16: The qmail installation method has been heavily modified because of a few reasons. When installing the qmail port it actually installs netqmail not qmail. Also this causes a conflict with the /var/qmail/queue and also the files within          /var/qmail/bin. I have modified the documentation to reflect these changes.

This was the first post about qmail 2.0


As of May 16, 2016 after about 50+ qmail installations I am happy to report that the qmail guide supports TLS on port 587. Many people may not realize this but port 587 is required for most apple devices. This guide fully supports secure POP3 on port 995 (dovecot), Secure SSL on port 465 (qmail) and secure TLS on port 587 (qmail). Once your qmail system is setup you can follow my optimization techniques to help thwart spam from arriving in your user's inbox.

I am planning on adding more spam related services to the qmail guide as a secondary expansion. Think of it as optimizing qmail part 2. This will include guide for razor, pryzor, adding even more rules to spamassassin and a new guide for enabling spamdyke.

Enjoy and as always please consider a donation to keep the site going.


Tuesday, 17 May 2016 16:08

Setting up the TLS Service

Setting up the TLS Service on port 587 is not absolutely necessary but a lot of apple devices require this. The folders and run files are in place so all we need to do is setup the IP and then setup the service. I have also created a new qmailctl script that can handle the TLS service.

# cd /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-tls
# vi run

You should set the following value:

IP= Substitute your own IP address. Do not leave this set to 0 without a good reason.

Save and then create the TLS Service by running the following command:

# ln -s /var/qmail/supervise/qmail-smtpd-tls /service/

Then check the service

# svstat /service/qmail-smtpd-tls/ /service/qmail-smtpd-tls/log/
/service/qmail-smtpd-tls/: up (pid 37035) 9 seconds
/service/qmail-smtpd-tls/log/: up (pid 37036) 9 seconds

it is important to note that if you use Microsoft Outlook to send mail via TLS you set the port to 587 but then under the section "Use the following type of encrypted connecttion" set this to AUTO.

If you want the qmailctl file to handle the TLS service copy this file:

# cd /var/qmail/bin
# cp qmailctl_tls qmailctl

When you run qmailctl it should now show the tls service.

Upgrading your ports and maintaining them are pretty easy. The first thing I would recommend is installing portupgrade from /usr/ports/sysutils/portupgrade. Once that is installed, you can run man portupgrade or just run portupgrade -r name. The -r switch means to upgrade everything recursively. Recurvisly meaning all of it's dependancies, or more simply, anything the program requires. You can do this for anything else not related to qmail or any of its programs. So for instance portupgrade -r kde, it will upgrade kde and all it's dependancies.

Another thing I would recommend using is portaudit. If you have your system setup correctly, You will get portaudit reports in your daily security logs. This will give you any warnings about any obsolete packages and/or any security warnings in regards to anything being installed.

What I am going to suggest in the next few pages is the recommended way to upgrade programs from ports. Mostly we will be running through backing up .conf files and running portupgrade and then making sure everything is chmodded or chowned correctly.

Qmail - Qmail doesn't require any type of upgrades. Qmail hasn't been upgraded since 1997 or 1998 but it is very stable and very secure.

UCSPI-TCP - Pretty much the same as qmail. I don't think has changed at all. Quite honestly, I have never upgraded it and I haven't ever had a problem with running any old/previous versions.

Daemontools - Again, Pretty much the same as qmail or UCSPI-TCP.

Ezmlm-idx - This can change from time to time. I would first backup your list which resides in ~vpopmail/domains/ before upgrading the port. Then, run portupgrade -r ezmlm-idx and then check to make sure your list is intact before deleting your backup.

Qmail-Autoresponder - As of 8/7/14 you need to create a symlink for delivermail as follows if you have not already. Just run the following command: ln -s /usr/local/bin/maildrop-deliverquota /usr/local/bin/deliverquota. otherwise This can be upgraded when new versions come out. A simple portupgrade -r qmail-autoresponder works fine in most cases.

Vpopmail -

At this point where the skel patch is no more, It is fairly easy to upgrade vpopmail from one version to the next. If your security run output or portaudit commands tell you that vpopmail need to be upgraded, run the following commands:

# cd /usr/ports/mail/vpopmail
# make CONFIGURE_ARGS="--enable-logging=p --enable-onchange-script"
# make deinstall
# make reinstall

Please make sure to run the following after upgrading vpopmail to make sure it works ok with TLS/SSL:

# cd ~vpopmail/bin
# chmod 6711 vchkpw
# chown vpopmail:vchkpw vchkpw

SpamAssassin - When I have run portupgrades with Spamassassin in the past, I usually don't run into any issues except the upgrade from 2.6x to 3.0.1. There were quite a few changes from version to version including some of the required modules that were new, like the SPF addon for it and such. If you do run a portupgrade on Spamassassin, I would go to Spamassassins website and read the README files under the download section of the site. There it will tell you any changes/modifications that have been done since the previos version. I would also check the rules under /usr/local/etc/mail/spamassassin file, specifically, to see if any additions or deletions were made.

Restart Spamassassin and then we will need to update the qmail-scanner database by running the following commands:

# setuidgid qscand /var/qmail/bin/ -z
# setuidgid qscand /var/qmail/bin/ -g
# setuidgid qscand /var/qmail/bin/ -p (If you're running qms 2.x)

This will update the header info and the qmail-scanner database and keep everything up to date.

ClamAV - ClamAV is probably the worst one out of all of them all but I make it easy for you, ClamAV changes almost every three months, possibly sooner. I would recommend backing up the clamd.conf and freshclam.conf in /usr/local/etc and then run portupgrade -r clamav. Then chown the following folders:

# chown -R qscand:qscand /var/log/clamav
# chown -R qscand:qscand /var/run/clamav/
# chown qscand:qscand /var/db/clamav/

I would then copy the backups of clamd.conf and freshclam.conf back to /usr/local/etc and then run freshclam to make sure evrything is working perfectly. Restart clamd and then we will need to update the qmail-scanner database by running the following commands:

# setuidgid qscand /var/qmail/bin/ -z
# setuidgid qscand /var/qmail/bin/ -g
# setuidgid qscand /var/qmail/bin/ -p (If you're running qms 2.x)

This will update the header info and the qmail-scanner database and keep everything up to date.

You will want to restart ClamAV.

Qmail-scanner - At the time of this writing, I would NOT recommend doing a portupgrade of qmail-scanner. There are a few reasons why. First, It does not even reqister with the packages system as we run the configure commands manually. Second we manually patch it with the qms-analog patch to get the nifty qmail-analog reports. So if a new vesion of qmail-scanner is released, I will update the documentation within a few days of it being released.

Qmailadmin - This is something else I wouldn't recommend doing a portupgrade on. When the new version comes out just make deinstall on the port and run through the guide as normal only using the newest version from ports. It just can't get any easier than that!

vqAdmin - Nothing needs to be backed up here. Just make deinstall the port and then follow the guide when the the new version comes out.

Dovecot - A simple portupgrade and a restart shouldn't be an issue at all.

Squirrelmail - This one is a rarity but every so often a squirrelmail upgrade does come up and if it does, backup your squirrelmail folder and then run a portupgrade -r squirrelmail and then double-check to make sure your conf files are setup correctly as they might change.


it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to rotate the qmail-scanner logs as they can get huge. These logs are stored in /var/spool/qmailscan and I would suggest adding the following to your /etc/newsyslog.conf:

/var/spool/qmailscan/qmail-queue.log qscand:qscand 600 5 256 * JC
/var/spool/qmailscan/qms-events.log qscand:qscand 600 5 256 * JC
/var/spool/qmailscan/quarantine.log qscand:qscand 660 7 * @T00 JC

If you would like a description of what each section does, do this:

# man 5 newsyslog.conf

The /var/log/mallog file is already rotated in newsyslog.conf once a day.

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