A mail transport agent that combines advanced capabilities with easy configuration.

Usually, mail to hosts with fully-qualified-domain-names is delivered via Internet-style (SMTP) delivery based on the domain name server (DNS) configuration. The uucpxtable forces delivery via UUCP routing by converting the domainized name into a UUCP-style un-domainized remote hostname.

It is frequently used when you're a MX forwarder for a site or (sub)domain or when you wish to send mail via a direct and reliable UUCP link rather than potentially multiple hops through the default mailer and any intermediate systems and networks.

UUCP sites that talk to UUCP neighbors who use domainized mail headers would use this file to force delivery of the mail through the direct UUCP point-to-point link between the two systems rather than using the less direct route of through the RELAY_MAILER and RELAY_HOST or through the DEFAULT_MAILER.

Internet sites who do not talk UUCP probably would not use the uucpxtable.


Suppose you provide MX forwarding service to a system called '' in DNS and 'foobarcom' in the UUCP maps. You would need the following uucpxtable entry to force incoming mail for their host to go through your direct UUCP connection.

#======= /usr/local/lib/mail/uucpxtable  ==========
#Mail sent to is rewritten to foobarcom!joe and
#therefore delivered via UUCP


The pathtable is used to define explicit routing to remote hosts or networks. The pathtable file should be in pathalias-style syntax, sorted alphabetically.

Most systems will not need any pathtable entries.

Example pathtable

#======== /usr/local/lib/mail/pathtable ==========
# this is a pathalias-style paths file to let you kick mail to
# uucp neighbors to the direct uucp path so you don't have to
# go the long way through your smart host that takes other traffic
# you want real tabs on each line or m4 might complain...
# pathalias-style routing through a system
foo!bar!%s bar
# mixed mode address
foo! foo
# all mail for a network to a gateway (see the leading '.' ?) .UUCP
relayhost!%s@othergate.domain .BITNET
#============ end of pathtable ===============


The domaintable is generally used to force certain behavior to occur after a DNS lookup has occurred. It permits the administrator to make shorthand names available for commonly referenced systems or domains by replacing the shorthand name with the proper one automatically. It can also be used to replace incorrect host.domain information with 'correct' information.

Most sites will not need any domaintable entries.


#========= /usr/local/lib/mail/domaintable =======
#replace a wrong domain people are mailing to with the correct one
brokenhost.correct.domain brokenhost.wrong.domain
#============ end of domaintable =============

Aliases permit a number of things to happen:

  • provide a shorthand or well-known name for mail to be addressed to in order to go to one or more persons

  • invoke a program with the mail message as the input to the program

  • send mail to a file

All systems require aliases for Postmaster and MAILER- DAEMON to be RFC-compliant. Always be extremely aware of security when defining aliases that invoke programs or write to programs since sendmail generally runs setuid-root.

Changes to the aliases file do not take effect until the '/usr/lib/sendmail -bi' command is executed to build the required dbm tables. This can also be done by executing the 'newaliases' command, usually from cron.

Details concerning mail aliases may be found in the aliases(5) manual page.

Infrequently Used Tables

The following tables are available, but rather infrequently used. Consult with the documentation that comes with the sendmail+IDA sources for details.


The uucprelays file is used to 'short-circuit' the uucp path to especially well-known sites rather than using a multi-hop or unreliable path generated by processing the UUCP maps with pathalias.

genericfrom and xaliases

The genericfrom file hides local usernames and addresses from the outside world by automatically converting inside usernames to generic 'From' addresses that do not match internal usernames.

The associated 'xalparse' utility automates the generation of the genericfrom and aliases file so that both incoming and outgoing username translations occur from a master xaliases file.


The decnetxtable rewrites domainized addresses into decnet-style addresses much like the domaintable rewrites undomainized addresses into domainized SMTP-style addresses.