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Re: SMTP error in fetchmail fetch

On Fri, Nov 15, 2002 at 09:08:48AM -0500, Kevin Coyner wrote:

| Can anyone interpret this syslog message for me?  

Yes.  :-)

| Nov 15 08:59:24 sakura fetchmail[19276]: SMTP error: 550 Syntax error in
| 'To' header: "@" or "." expected after "Low": failing address is: <Low
| Rates On Your Dream Home!> 
| Nov 15 08:59:24 sakura fetchmail[19276]:  not flushed
| Clearly the message that I'm trying to fetch is spam, so I really don't
| care about fetching it.  But is this err msg the result of the spammer
| setting up his/her email incorrectly, or could it be that I've got
| something misconfigured?

You configured exim to perform header syntax checks.  Exim checked the
syntax of the header and found it to be invalid.  So exim rejects the
message with a 550 status.  The "sender" (fetchmail in this case)
realizes that the message has not been handed off to the next carrier
so it still retains responsibility for it.

| And I presume that the "not flushed" msg means that it did not get
| downloaded.


| Does that mean it will sit out in my pop3 inbox on my ISP's mail
| server forever?


| Or hopefully after a day or two it gets bounced back to the spammer
| as undeliverable.

Who is going to bounce it?  Your ISP already successfully accepted the
mesasge from the previous SMTP node and delivered it to your mailbox.

You have a couple of choices :

    1)  ignore the error every time you fetch mail and let the junk
        sit at your ISP

    2)  disable the syntax checks in exim since it can't really reject
        mail because you're not running your own mail site
        (What I mean is this: take my system for example, my exim
        setup receives mail directly from other mail servers.  Unless
        exim accpets the mail, it hasn't been delivered yet.  If I
        reject syntactically invalid mail then the preceding SMTP node
        generates the bounce because the message was rejected.)

    3)  use an different tool to manage invalid messages like that

        3a) you could use procmail or maildrop or an exim filter using
            regexes to blackhole those messages after you've
            downloaded them from your ISP

        3b) use popsneaker or a similar tool to identify the bad
            message and delete it from your mailbox on your ISP
            without actually downloading it


He who belongs to God hears what God says.  The reason you do not hear
is that you do not belong to God.
        John 8:47

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