Internals of the qmail Mailer

Length: 75 minutes


qmail is an outstanding example of a fast, reliable, secure piece of system software---something that is all too rare in this sad, fallen world. By studying how it works, we can learn something about how to make all software better. This talk offers a brief overview of the structure of the qmail system and its principal components, looking briefly at several major design decisions that underlie qmail's success as a safe, efficient, reliable, and secure package.

Complete Slides

  1. Internals of qmail
  2. Who cares?
  3. qmail
  4. Momentary digression about envelopes
  5. Sendmail
  6. Sendmail
  7. Sendmail
  8. Alternative MTAs
  9. Basic Structure of Qmail
  10. Basic Structure of Qmail
  11. The Queue
  12. The Queue
  13. Trigger?
  14. qmail-send
  15. qmail-send and the queue
  16. Delivery Schedule
  17. Delivery
  18. Marking Finished
  19. Delivery
  20. Permissions
  21. Permissions
  22. Security
  23. Security
  24. Permissions
  25. Safe Delivery
  26. Safe Delivery with maildir
  27. Thanks!

tgz file of the entire talk

Related Talks

2001's talk about inodes

2002's talk about the Unix process model

There was no talk in 2003, because I was in Ireland in December.

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