On Mon 19 Feb 2018 at 12:28:03 (+0000), Jeremy Nicoll wrote:
> On Thu, 15 Feb 2018, at 16:21, Dan Purgert wrote:
> 
> > > Later, once you understand how a local network works, you can come
> > > up with a theme.  Or some convention that lets you identify the
> > > computer by its name.  The name that you have chosen.
> 
> Machine-naming makes sense to me - having done that with a variety
> of (blush) Windows machines in my LAN.  I've toyed with versions of 
> Linux, and used a few live-CD ones over the years, and I'm fairly sure
> that as well as being asked to supply a hostname I've also been asked 
> to supply a domain value.
> 
> What, on a home LAN, is that used for?

Nothing, with the possible exceptions of:

. avoiding this message at boot up:
  Mon Feb 19 04:58:38 2018: [....] Starting MTA:hostname --fqdn did not return 
a fully qualified name,
  Mon Feb 19 04:58:38 2018: dc_minimaldns will not work. Please fix your 
/etc/hosts setup.

. satisfying a broken smarthost┬╣,

. causing some discussion here.

However, even though bug #504427 has never been answered, I don't
think I'm seeing this message any more except on wheezy (as above).
So here I have:

$ cat /etc/mailname 
alum
$ head /etc/hosts
# /root/hosts-1-local-template
# List of local hosts.
# Adjust the two lines for this host when installing.
# Check the IPv6 lines occasionally because they change them.

127.0.0.1       localhost
127.0.1.1       alum

192.168.1.1     router
192.168.1.2     roku2w
$ 

I've sometimes wondered what other people dream up as their
domainnames; that is, people who don't have a legitimate reason
to put something like example.com.

┬╣IOW check /var/log/exim4/mainlog that sending an email is successful.

Cheers,
David.

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