I use ssmtp to email program exception error messages via my google account.

On my osmc linux setup I run this command to check if there is a running ssmtp process.

osmc@osmc:~$ ps -aux | grep ssmtp
osmc      5880  1.0  0.4   2676  1464 pts/0    S+   08:00   0:00 grep ssmtp

I think the result means there is no ssmtp process currently running?

Does ssmtp just run when it needs to or is it running all the time in the background? If so how do you start and stop it?

1 Answer 1


There's nothing to stop or start.

ssmtp is not a daemon that would run in the background waiting for messages to be sent. Instead, it is a drop-in replacement for /usr/sbin/sendmail. Normally, /usr/sbin/sendmail would be executed to enqueue a new outbound message and exit. The queue would then be processed by a MTA daemon. However, in the case of ssmtp, there's no queue at all. Instead of queuing messages locally, ssmtp just immediately sends them over SMTP to the real MTA server.

Thus, the only situation when you'd see a running ssmtp process in ps is during the transmission of a message.

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