Further to my posting here: Why does my CMS run extremely slow in my workstation (Ubuntu) I now ask "Do I need Nullmailer-Send" running? The reason I ask, is that earlier this year (2013) I had issues regarding large .log files being created in /var/log which result in some .logs being some 1GB and I had to manually delete them. My machine (a Ubuntu 12.10 and very nice it is too!) is only a home office 'desktop' work-station and used for the normal daily things (inc LAMP WebDev) but mainly Office, Web-browsing, FTP and I don't use it as a server, as my email is collected either by Evolution Client or via GoogleMail.com.

I would like to reduce any system 'bloat' and hence my OP here about Nullmailer.


You should have a way to send mail on any unix machine in such a way that users can read it. A common sender of mail is cron: if any cron job produces output, it will be mailed to the local user (or to the alternate address specified in the crontab). Other services may want to send mail to the system administrator, for example Smart when it detects disk defects. I don't know if Drupal might send mail, but I would expect at least some plugins to offer the option.

Nullmailer is a simple tool to send mail only. It doesn't do any local mail delivery, it can only establish an outgoing SMTP connection to send mail to another machine. This is a good idea if you never want to receive or deliver mail locally, only forward it to some other service inside or outside your network.

Nullmailer isn't a daemon. It doesn't need to be since it isn't listening to any network event. It is invoked by local applications under the name /usr/sbin/sendmail to send mail.

Sending mail is an essential service. Essential services are not bloat.

  • Thank you for your answer, for which I appreciate. My query stems from the fact that mail.logs in my /var/logs dir have often crept upto some 1Gb in size, not deleted by way of a CRON, stepped up to further named *.log1 files and taken up vast amounts of space on my system drive. Considering my home 'desktop' has no purpose to send out any mail traffic to the outside world (as I use fibre for www and connect like most consumers), my query from a *nix perspective was one of reducing services not required. There must be something wrong with my desktop setup. (-:
    – Paul B
    Oct 6 '13 at 22:51
  • Unless of course the Nullmailer ala/ usr path has a system participation in the likes of my Evolution email utility, in which case I DO need it, but I'm still unsure of the large logs created. But for now, I can manage by 'manually' deleting them via BleachBit (as Root). I'll mark the answer as an accepted one. Thank you.
    – Paul B
    Oct 6 '13 at 22:56
  • @PaulB Deleting old logs is normally done by logrotate or rsyslog. Nullmailer is never involved in delivering or reading mail locally, only in sending mail generated on the local machine to a remote machine. Oct 6 '13 at 23:06
  • Seems that you are not the only one to experiment that problem, did you read that thread ? drupal.org/node/1018126 Some person advise to disable modules, some other to change parameters in inoDb my.cnf.
    – Emmanuel
    Oct 7 '13 at 16:02

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