Solaris Common Messages and Troubleshooting Guide

dtmail: cannot open mailfile on 2.5.1 /var/mail server


/var/mail is mounted onto client machine A, which is running CDE 1.2 (the Solaris 2.6 release), from machine B, a server running the Solaris 2.5.1 release.

OpenWindow's mailtool can read/write mailfiles on the server without any problems. However, CDE's dtmail does not open the mailbox.


The bug's permissions and ownership have to be checked. The mail directory should have the following permissions:

skywalker$ ls -lad /var/mail
drwxrwsrwt   3 root     mail         512 Feb 10 14:40 /var/mail/
while the mailbox itself should look something like this:

-rw-------   1 zvinakis mail     3206838 Feb 19 11:51 /var/mail/zvinakis
If the directory's permissions are not set properly, issue these commands on the mail server:

chmod a+t /var/mail
chmod g+s /var/mail

If the permissions (or group) are not correct on the mailbox itself, using "joe" as an example mailbox, type:

chgrp mail /var/mail/joe
To change the permissions, type:

chmod 600 /var/mail/joe