Opened 11 years ago

Closed 11 years ago

Last modified 11 years ago

#553 closed Bug/Something is broken (worksforme)

2.3MB sent to generates message size error

Reported by: Owned by:
Priority: High Component: Tech
Keywords: email attachments mailman Cc:
Sensitive: no


Lisa tried to send an email with a 2.3MB attachment to staff@… and received the message below in return. I checked the Mailman settings even though I'm pretty sure this isn't a Mailman problem, and there's no limit on the message size there. 2240000 bytes seems like a rather low limit!

Undelivered Mail Returned to Sender
From: (Mail Delivery System)
Fri, 1 Feb 2008 14:05:49 -0500 (EST)

This is the mail system at host

I'm sorry to have to inform you that your message could not
be delivered to one or more recipients. It's attached below.

For further assistance, please send mail to postmaster.

If you do so, please include this problem report. You can
delete your own text from the attached returned message.

                   The mail system

<>: message size 2422761 exceeds size limit
    2240000 of server[]

Reporting-MTA: dns;
X-Postfix-Queue-ID: 04FE985C22
X-Postfix-Sender: rfc822;
Arrival-Date: Fri,  1 Feb 2008 14:05:49 -0500 (EST)

Final-Recipient: rfc822;
Original-Recipient: rfc822;
Action: failed
Status: 5.3.4
Diagnostic-Code: X-Postfix; message size 2422761 exceeds size limit 2240000 of

Received: from localhost (localhost.localdomain [])
	by (Postfix) with ESMTP id 04FE985C22
	for <>; Fri,  1 Feb 2008 14:05:49 -0500 (EST)
X-Virus-Scanned: Debian amavisd-new at
Received: from ([])
	by localhost ( []) (amavisd-new, port 10024)
	with ESMTP id idhGWh982Lgb for <>;
	Fri,  1 Feb 2008 14:05:47 -0500 (EST)
Received: from [] (unknown [])
	(using TLSv1 with cipher DHE-RSA-AES256-SHA (256/256 bits))
	(No client certificate requested)
	(Authenticated sender:
	by (Postfix) with ESMTP id 351FA85BE8
	for <>; Fri,  1 Feb 2008 14:05:20 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 01 Feb 2008 14:05:20 -0500
From: Lisa Stein <>
User-Agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20071031)
MIME-Version: 1.0
Subject: Taxes and Wheels
Content-Type: multipart/mixed;

Change History (3)

comment:1 Changed 11 years ago by

Hi - yes, you are right - it's not a mailman limit, it's a postfix limit. By default, postfix allows attachments as high as 10 MB. However, since leslie is a shared email list server, we reduced this limit to 2 MB. The reason is because the system resources required to copy a > 2MB attachment to potentially thousands of people can really slam the system.

dkg raised a suggestion on how to get around sending large attachments via email - which I think is the best solution. However, we're far from implementing that idea :(. If the attachment isn't private - is uploading the attachment to their drupal site and then sending a link via email an option? If the attachment isn't already compressed - what about zipping it before sending?

I'm not sure how to enable sending messages over 2MB while still protecting the server against unintentional denial of service attacks!

comment:2 Changed 11 years ago by

  • Resolution set to worksforme
  • Status changed from new to closed

Actually, I chose an entirely different option. They were using a Mailman list for their staff mailing list, even though they don't need any Mailman features - just a way to easily send email to everyone on staff at once. So I just set up staff@… as an email alias that forwards to all staff members. More efficient and avoids the issue entirely! Thanks for the help.

comment:3 Changed 11 years ago by

  • Keywords email attachments mailman added

Thanks for posting your work around Jack.

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