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Release hold queue email in Postfix – postsuper

How to flush Postfix’ mail queue from the command line and delete all mail from the queue? Easy, use the Postfix postsuper command as explained in this post. The postsuper command controls different types of queues in the Postfix mail system, like the deferred or hold queue. This post shows you some Postfix queue operations to maintain your mail servers.

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The Postfix superintendent postsuper command does maintenance jobs on the Postfix queue. Use of the command is restricted to the superuser. The following commands releases or deletes mail:

To see the Postfix mail queue, simply enter:

mailq

To delete all mail from the Postfix mail queue:

postsuper -d ALL

To remove all mails in the deferred queue:

postsuper -d ALL deferred

Remove all mails in the hold queue:

postsuper -d ALL hold

You can use -H to release an email that was put “on hold” in Postfix’ queues. Release an email by its queue-id:

postsuper -H <queue_id>

Or release all hold mails from the hold queue:

postsuper -H ALL

Are you running multiple Postfix mail instances? Use postmulti, the multi-instance manager:

postmulti -i <instance> -x mailq
postmulti -i <instance> -x postsuper -d ALL
postmulti -i <instance> -x postsuper -d ALL deferred
postmulti -i <instance> -x postsuper -d ALL hold

Everything can be put together in a management Bash script. One example is to delete all MAILER-DAEMON mails from the queue in Postfix.

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Postfix mailq sort by date #

It is always nice to sort mailq’s output by date. @climagic posted on Twitter:

# Show your postfix mail queue sender/queueid lines and order them by time 
# (day and hour at least)
mailq |grep "^[A-F0-9]" |sort -k5n -k6n

# or add -r to sort to reverse the date sort output (may not always be correct)
# mailq |grep "^[A-F0-9]" |sort -k5rn -k6n

How to flush postfix mail queue, delete all mail, and its various operations.


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Jan Reilink

My name is Jan. I am not a hacker, coder, developer, programmer or guru. I am merely a system administrator, doing my daily thing at Vevida in the Netherlands. With over 15 years of experience, my specialties include Windows Server, IIS, Linux (CentOS, Debian), security, PHP, websites & optimization.

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