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The standard instructions for configuring postfix to use authenticated SMTP to use authentication when forwarding to a relay host did not work for me on OS X Lion. For future searchers here is how I made it work.
- Create the file /etc/postfix/sasl_passwd as described in the standard docs, i.e. at least one line containing:
and set the permissions using sudo chmod 600 /etc/postfix/sasl_passwd.
- Make the db version used by postfix: sudo postmap /etc/postfix/sasl_passwd (the new file will inherit the permissions of the original file).
- If you have upgraded from a previous version of OS X, particularly if you modified your postfix configs, follow the advice in the section below before continuing.
- To tell postfix to use authenticated SMTP, add the following lines to /etc/postfix/main.cf:
mydomain = <
mydomain_fallback = localhost
smtp_sasl_auth_enable = yes
smtp_sasl_password_maps = hash:/etc/postfix/sasl_passwd
If your domain’s MX records do not specify your relayhost then you must also set the relayhost line.
- postfix on OS X runs “on demand” so there is no need to instruct it to reload its configuration. The log file is in the standard UNIX location, /var/log/mail.log.
Upgrading from Snow Leopard
I had previously had this postfix setup working under Snow Leopard, and the upgrade process appeared to have preserved my configuration settings so I was surprised to see that after upgrading to Lion, my smarthost was not accepting mail.
Examining the files in /etc/postfix I noticed that in addition to my customised main.cf there was also a file called main.cf.default which was modified the date I had upgraded to Lion. Comparing the two files showed a number of subtle differences but after being unable to determine why postfix was not authenticating to my upstream server, I decided to copy it over my customised main.cf and re-apply my changes.
Having done this, the mailq command gave me the following error:
postfix: fatal: bad string length 0 < 1: setgid_group =
Setting setgid_group = _postdrop in main.cf fixed that but then I hit another error:
fatal: file /etc/postfix/main.cf: parameter mail_owner: user postfix has same user ID as _postfix
Resolving this required me to change the value of mail_owner from postfix to _postfix but I don’t know if this is a bug in Apple’s supplied main.cf or an artefact of my user and group information evolving from a 10.6 install to 10.7.