pmdamailq man page

pmdamailq — mail queue performance metrics domain agent (PMDA)


$PCP_PMDAS_DIR/mailq/pmdamailq [-b binlist] [-d domain] [-l logfile] [-r regex] [-U username] [queuedir]


pmdamailq is a Performance Metrics Domain Agent (PMDA) which extracts performance metrics describing the state of the e-mail queues managed by sendmail(1) and other mail transfer agents.

The mailq PMDA exports metrics that measure the total number of entries in the mail queue, and the subtotals for entries that have been queued for various time periods.

A brief description of the pmdamailq command line options follows:


The binlist argument specifies a list of delay thresholds used to “bin” the entries in the queue into a a histogram based on how long the entry has been in the mail queue. The default thresholds are: 1 hour, 4 hours, 8 hours, 1 day, 3 days and 7 days. The entries in binlist are comma separated time intervals, using the syntax described in PCPIntro(1) for an update or reporting interval, e.g. the default list could be specified using the value 1hr,4hrs,8hrs,1day,3days,7days.

Values in binlist are assumed to be in ascending order, and mail items in the queue less than the first threshold are binned into a special bin labeled “recent”.


It is absolutely crucial that the performance metrics domain number specified here is unique and consistent. That is, domain should be different for every PMDA on the one host, and the same domain number should be used for the same PMDA on all hosts.


Location of the log file.  By default, a log file named mailq.log is written in the current directory of pmcd(1) when pmdamailq is started, i.e. $PCP_LOG_DIR/pmcd . If the log file cannot be created or is not writable, output is written to the standard error instead.


Use an extended regular expression to match file names in the mail queue directory, rather than assuming all "df" prefixed files in the directory are mail files (the "df" prefix is the sendmail convention, but this convention is not followed by other mail daemons). The regex pattern specified should conform to the POSIX format described in regex(3), and it describes file names that should be considered mail.


User account under which to run the agent. The default is the unprivileged "pcp" account in current versions of PCP, but in older versions the superuser account ("root") was used by default.

The optional queuedir argument defines the directory in which pmdamailq expects to find the mail queue. The default is /var/spool/mqueue.


If you want access to the names, help text and values for the mailq performance metrics, do the following as root:

# cd $PCP_PMDAS_DIR/mailq
# ./Install

If you want to undo the installation, do the following as root:

# cd $PCP_PMDAS_DIR/mailq
# ./Remove

pmdamailq is launched by pmcd(1) and should never be executed directly. The Install and Remove scripts notify pmcd(1) when the agent is installed or removed.



command line options used to launch pmdamailq


default help text file for the mailq metrics


installation script for the pmdamailq agent


undo installation script for the pmdamailq agent


default log file for error messages and other information from pmdamailq

PCP Environment

Environment variables with the prefix PCP_ are used to parameterize the file and directory names used by PCP. On each installation, the file /etc/pcp.conf contains the local values for these variables. The $PCP_CONF variable may be used to specify an alternative configuration file, as described in pcp.conf(5).

See Also

PCPIntro(1), pmcd(1), pcp.conf(5) and pcp.env(5).


PCP Performance Co-Pilot