dbmail-util - maintains the integrity and cleanliness of the DBMail datatables.

dbmail-util [-actbpds] [-l time] [-yn] [-qvVh] [-f configFile]

The dbmail-util program does a global database cleanup and integrity check. All messages that are set for deletion (status 2) will be marked for final deletion (status 3). All message that are marked for final deletion will be cleared from the database. The integrity check will check for unconnected mimeparts, headervalues, messages and mailboxes.

By default, the checks run in a read-only mode, possibly prompting to make changes. Pass the -n option to respond no to any prompts. Pass the -y option to make read-write changes, responding yes to any prompts.

As DBMail matures and new features are added, additional check modes will be added. In addition, more prompts may be added for different situations where changes need to be committed to the database. We recommend using the -a option to run all checks and using the -n and -y options if you expect no prompts.


Perform all checks listed below. This option will be kept up-to-date with additional checks available in future versions.


Clean up unlinked message entries.


Test for message integrity.


Check and rebuild the body/header/envelope cache tables.


Remove all messages with a PURGE (3) value on status field. To purge messages currently marked with the DELETE (2) status, run with the -pd options twice. This is not recommended; it is better to leave a grace period for old messages before permanently wiping them from the database.


Queue all messages marked with the DELETE (2) status for final purging, by setting the status value to PURGE (3). The status field is set to DELETE by either the IMAP-EXPUNGE or POP3-DELE commands.


Remove dangling/invalid aliases and forwards.

-r time

Clear the reply cache used for autoreplies and Sieve vacations. The time is specified as <hours>h<minutes>m (don’t include the angle brackets, though!).

-l time

Clear the IP log used for IMAP/POP-before-SMTP. The time is specified as <hours>h<minutes>m (don’t include the angle brackets, though!).


migrate legacy 2.2.x messageblks to mimeparts table.

-m limit

limit number of physmessages migrated. Default 10000 per run.


Show the intended repairs without making any changes, i.e. no to all.


Perform all repair actions , i.e. yes to all.


Enter an interactive user management console in some future version where this feature is implemented. It is not currently available.


Rebuild the hash values for all the message parts in the database. You need to run this after modifying the hash_algorithm config option.

-f configfile

Specify an alternate config file. The utilities are currently hardcoded to use /etc/dbmail.conf for their configs, and will halt if the config file cannot be found. Use the -f configfile option to specify your system’s preferred config file location. Debian is patched to have /etc/dbmail/dbmail.conf as the default.


Quietly skip interactive prompts and helpful status messages which would otherwise be printed to stdout. Use two -q’s to silence errors which would otherwise be printed to stderr.


Operate verbosely. Some of the utilities in the DBMail suite can take two -v’s for extra verbosity. Those which don’t understand this convention won’t complain about having the extra -v and will simply operate at their normal verbosity.


Show the version and copyright, then exit.


Show a brief summary of options, then exit.

Returns 3 when errors are found but could not be fixed due to failure, 2 when errors are found but -y was not provided or -n was provided, 1 when errors are found and fixed successfully, 0 when no errors are found.

After upgrading from DBMail 2.0 or truncating the cache tables, run this command to populate the cache:

` dbmail-util -by`

To set all messages with the DELETE status to PURGE status, and permanently remove all messages previously set to PURGE status:

` dbmail-util -dpy`

To get a listing of the changes that would be performed for all actions:

` dbmail-util -an`

To remove all IP log entries more than three days old:

` dbmail-util -l 72h -y`

If you experience inexplicable problems with DBMail, please report the issue to the DBMail Bug Tracker[1].

DBMail and its components are distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License. Copyrights are held variously by the authors listed below.

DBMail is a collaborative effort among the core developers listed below and the tremendous help of the testers, patchers and bug hunters listed in the AUTHORS and THANKS files found in the DBMail source distribution.

Alan Hicks          Persistent Objects Ltd https://p-o.co.uk
Eelco van Beek      Aaron Stone            Paul J Stevens
Roel Rozendaal      Open Source Engineer   NFG Net Facilities Group BV
Ilja Booij          Palo Alto, CA USA      http://www.nfg.nl
IC&S                http://hydricacid.com

DBMail Bug Tracker