On Sat, Sep 01, 2018 at 05:50:27PM +0000, Gilles Chehade wrote:
> I'll describe how things work in this mail so it serves as reference for
> future questions regarding aliases, virtual and userbase:
> Aliases and virtuals are mutually exclusive features that operate at the
> same level, converting an e-mail address into a local user.
> Userbases operate at a lower level, allowing to lookup system details of
> a local user such as uid, gid and home directory.
> You don't have to have aliases or virtuals, but you MUST have a userbase
> which defaults to the system user database when you don't specify one.
> Aliases and virtuals can be seen as functions that take an e-mail as the
> input and produce usernames that _MUST_ exist in the underlying userbase
> as the output, otherwise the recipient will be rejected.
> The difference between aliases and virtuals is subtle but simple:
> - aliases assume that all users on the system are allowed to get e-mails
>   and that the user-part of recipient e-mail addresses are the usernames
>   on the system. the mechanism allows you to provide an OPTIONAL list of
>   transformations in case some recipients have user-parts that are not a
>   system user, and it assumes that if no alias is found, then user-parts
>   must be looked up as real usernames.
> - virtuals assume that users are NOT allowed to get e-mails, unless they
>   are EXPLICITELY allowed on a list. either a transform is found and the
>   recipient is converted into a username, or the recipient is rejected.
> You can receive e-mail if you're not in the aliases list, if you have an
> account on the system with a username matching the user-part.
> You can't receive e-mail if you're not in the virtuals list, EVEN if you
> have an account matching the user-part.
> Now with that being said, converting a recipient into a username doesn't
> help us much if that username doesn't exist for real. We need a uid, gid
> and a home directory, so no matter if you used aliases, virtuals or none
> of them, the username behind a recipient must be found in the user base.

Thanks, this helps a lot

Just one more question.

You reply sounds like I should choose either aliases or virtual, but not
both. Is this correct?

What about programs such as femail? Do they work fine with just

Chris Bennett

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