Postfix won't reject undeliverable messages

PascalTurbo asked:

I’m not shure about the wording. Maybe bouncing is the right word.

Problem is, that a local user did send a message to a non-existing domain. Now I expected that postfix will send the message back to the sender. Isn’t this default behavior? And if not, what have I to do to get this working?

If someone’s interesseted in my postfix configuration: Pastebin (because it’s to large to post here).

The problem in simple steps:

  1. james.bond@mydomain.org sends a message via mail.mydomain.org to alfred@nonexistenddomain.org
  2. Mail stays in postfix’ mailqueue now for over 5 days.

My intention:

  • Notify the sender (james.bond@mydomain.org) that message couldn’t get delivered.

My answer:


The parameter you want to look at is bounce_queue_lifetime.

It seems that in your configuration it’s set to 2 days, which is kind of low. Perhaps you changed it after this issue occurred? Or did you remember to reload Postfix after changing it?


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