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       exim_db  -  Manage  Exim's  hint  databases  (exim_dumpdb,  exim_fixdb,


       exim_dumpdb spooldir database
       exim_fixdb spooldir database
       exim_tidydb [-f] [-t time] spooldir database


       Three utility programs are provided for maintaining the DBM files  that
       Exim  uses  to  contain  its  delivery  hint information.  Each program
       requires two arguments.  The first specifies the name of  Exim's  spool
       directory,  and the second is the name of the database it is to operate
       on.  These are as follows:

       retry  the database of retry information

       wait-<transport name>
              databases of information about messages waiting for remote hosts

       misc   other hints data (for example, for serializing ETRN runs)

       The entire contents of a database are written to the standard output by
       the exim_dumpdb program, which has no options or arguments  other  than
       the spool and database names.  For example, to dump the retry database:

       exim_dumpdb /var/spool/exim retry

       Two lines of output are produced for each entry:
           T:mail.ref.example: 146 77 Connection refused
         31-Oct-1995 12:00:12  02-Nov-1995 12:21:39  02-Nov-1995 20:21:39 *

       The first item on the first line is the key of the record.   It  starts
       with  one  of  the letters R, or T, depending on whether it refers to a
       routing or transport retry.  For a local delivery, the next part is the
       local address; for a remote delivery it is the name of the remote host,
       followed     by      its      failing      IP      address      (unless
       "no_retry_include_ip_address"  is  set  on  the  smtp transport).  Then
       there follows an error code, an additional error code,  and  a  textual
       description of the error.

       The  three  times on the second line are the time of first failure, the
       time of the last delivery attempt, and the computed time for  the  next
       attempt.   The  line  ends  with an asterisk if the cutoff time for the
       last retry rule has been exceeded.

       Each output line from exim_dumpdb for the wait-xxx  databases  consists
       of  a host name followed by a list of ids for messages that are or were
       waiting to be delivered to that host.  If there are a very large number
       for any one host, continuation records, with a sequence number added to
       the host name, may be seen.  The data in these records is often out  of
       date, because a message may be routed to several alternative hosts, and
       Exim makes no effort to keep cross-references.

       The exim_tidydb utility program is used to tidy up the contents of  the
       hints databases.  If run with no options, it removes all records from a
       database that are more than 30  days  old.   The  cutoff  date  can  be
       altered  by  means  of the -t option, which must be followed by a time.
       For example, to remove all records older than a  week  from  the  retry

       exim_tidydb -t 7d /var/spool/exim retry

       Both  the  wait-xxx  and  retry  databases  contain  items that involve
       message ids.  In the former these appear as data in  records  keyed  by
       host  - they were messages that were waiting for that host - and in the
       latter they are the keys for retry information for messages  that  have
       suffered certain types of error.  When "exim_tidydb" is run, a check is
       made to ensure that message  ids  in  database  records  are  those  of
       messages that are still on the queue.  Message ids for messages that no
       longer exist are removed from "wait-"xxx records, and  if  this  leaves
       any records empty, they are deleted.  For the "retry" database, records
       whose keys are non-existent message ids are removed.   The  exim_tidydb
       utility  outputs  comments  on  the standard output whenever it removes
       information from the database.

       Removing records from a DBM  file  does  not  normally  make  the  file
       smaller,  but all the common DBM libraries are able to re-use the space
       that is released.  It is therefore suggested that  exim_tidydb  be  run
       periodically  on  all  the hints databases, but at a quiet time of day,
       because it requires a database to be locked (and therefore inaccessible
       to Exim) while it does its work.

       The  exim_fixdb  program  is  a  utility  for  interactively  modifying
       databases.  Its main use is for testing Exim,  but  it  might  also  be
       occasionally  useful  for  getting round problems in a live system.  It
       has no options, and its interface is  somewhat  crude.   On  entry,  it
       prompts  for  input  with  a  right angle-bracket.  A key of a database
       record can then be entered, and the data for that record is  displayed.

       If  'd' is typed at the next prompt, the entire record is deleted.  For
       all except the retry database, that is the only operation that  can  be
       carried  out.  For the retry database, each field is output preceded by
       a number, and data for individual fields can be changed by  typing  the
       field number followed by new data, for example:

         > 4 951102:1000

       resets the time of the next delivery attempt.  Time values are given as
       a sequence of digit pairs for  year,  month,  day,  hour,  and  minute.
       Colons can be used as optional separators.


       This  manual page needs a major re-work. If somebody knows better groff
       than us and has more experience in writing manual  pages,  any  patches
       would be greatly appreciated.


       exim(8), /usr/share/doc/exim4-base/


       This manual page was stitched together from spec.txt by Andreas Metzler
       <ametzler at>, for the Debian GNU/Linux system  (but
       may be used by others).

                                March 26, 2003                      EXIM_DB(8)