Installing and setting up Postfix SMTP Server in Ubuntu 10.04 is easy. Postfix by default uses the mbox mail format so we’ll just change it to maildir.

Configure Postfix

1. Edit the file /etc/postfix/ using the command
sudo vi /etc/postfix/
and add the line below
home_mailbox = Maildir/

In, lines starting with # are comments. Save the file after completing your changes.

NoteMake sure that the mail_spool_directory and mailbox_command lines are commented out. Otherwise, it will override the setting in the home_mailbox line.
NoteIf you are not familiar with vi, check out this quick vi tutorial.
Service Configuration2. Restart postfix using the command
sudo service postfix restart

Test Postfix

Here is a sample postfix session. Replace johndoe with any valid user account. The dot after the line test is a command that should be typed in.

NoteIf you need to add new user accounts, learn how to add or remove user accounts here.
johndoe@mail:~$ telnet localhost smtp
Connected to localhost.
Escape character is '^]'.
220 mail ESMTP Postfix (Ubuntu)
ehlo localhost
250-SIZE 10240000
250 DSN
mail from:<johndoe>
250 2.1.0 Ok
rcpt to:<johndoe>
250 2.1.5 Ok
354 End data with <CR><LF>.<CR><LF>
250 2.0.0 Ok: queued as 9729067C17
221 2.0.0 Bye
Connection closed by foreign host.


To check if the mail indeed exists

johndoe@mail:~$ cd /home/johndoe/Maildir/new
johndoe@mail:~/Maildir/new$ ls
johndoe@mail:~/Maildir/new$ cat 1185669817.Vfd00I18012M795756.mail

Don’t worry, you don’t have to type in the whole filename above. Just type in the first few characters say 118 then press Tab to activate automatic completion.

From johndoe@mail.acme.local  Thu Feb 22 21:48:28 2007
Return-Path: <johndoe@mail.acme.local>
X-Original-To: johndoe
Delivered-To: johndoe@mail.acme.local
Received: from localhost.localdomain (localhost.localdomain [])
        by mail.acme.local (Postfix) with SMTP id 9729067C17
        for <johndoe>; Thu, 22 Feb 2007 21:48:26 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <20070222134827.9729067C17@mail.acme.local>
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 2007 21:48:26 -0500 (EST)
From: johndoe@mail.acme.local
To: undisclosed-recipients:;


NoteIf you encounter any problems, check the log file at /var/log/mail.log.

Visit the forum to ask for help or to give a comment.

Posted on 9/11/2011 and last updated on 9/12/2011
Filed under Postfix , Ubuntu 10.04