Active Member
Aug 16, 2001
I was wondering what an acceptable backlog is for exim? (running exim -bpc);

I have chripy's mailscanner install and twice have had the exim backlog jump into the thousands. Today it happened and after doing chirpy's suggestions from his site a couple of times I was able to get the number down. now after checking again the number is growing and doesn't show signs of stopping... :confused:

I am not blaming chirpy or his setup I just don't understand enough about exim and the mailscanner interaction to figure this out on my own. I have noticed when I tail the maillog when things are running smoothly there is a lot of interaction by mailscanner, and when the backup grows (like now) there seems to be littler interaction. I have checked top and don't really see any outragous numbers so I don't think it is something else hogging the resources...

Well any help would be greatly appreciated...

PS if anyone knows of any good current books on exim and mailscanner please let me know


Well-Known Member
Dec 30, 2001
An EXIM backlog in the 'thousands' is definitely not normal (unless a client's mailing list is currently dispatching many thousands of emails).

A MailScanner failure, for whatever reason, can cause this condition, as mail queues up and isn't being delivered.

First thing I'd do is tail my mail log to see if mail is being delivered to your box. If not, you'll probably want to disable MailScanner until you can determine the issue ... otherwise your mail queue will just continue to grow while mail isn't delivered.

Good luck

p.s. I use the configserver.com folks MailScanner solution on several busy servers and have been extremely pleased with its excellent performance (but have also had a few hiccups along the way).

p.p.s. You can do a MailScanner restart and look for any errors:

/sbin/service MailScanner restart

-- Bill