MailScanner children hanging on startup when spam.lists.conf file is open by another process

Julian Field MailScanner at
Wed Apr 2 15:27:02 IST 2008

Warren Guy wrote:
> Sorry for the extraneous post, but just wanted to clarify a couple of 
> things:
> Warren Guy wrote:
>> I encountered a strange problem this evening, where a colleague had 
>> inadvertently left open a terminal on our mail server with the 
>> spam.lists.conf configuration file open in vi, which seemed to cause 
>> the MailScanner child processes to die when they (re-)started.
> The processes weren't "dying", but rather seemed to hang.
If for some reason BSD vi was insisting on putting an all-out lock on 
the file while your colleague was editing it, then the child processes 
would indeed hang waiting for access to the file. It should only be 
opening it for read though. Never seen this one before.


Julian Field MEng CITP CEng
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