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MH Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) with Answers
Section - 03.09 Fixing "cannot fopen and lock /var/spool/mail/(user)"

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Date: Mon, 30 Sep 96 15:00:16 +0200

  One should put the following lines in the $MHLIB/mts.conf
  (mtstailor) file:

    lockldir:
    lockstyle: 1

  This prevents MH from using kernel level locking, and uses lock
  files instead. It solved the problem for me on two different
  architectures. When the lockldir entry is left empty as above, the
  lock file is put in the same directory as the file to be locked. If
  another directory is wanted, its name should be put here.

From: alhy at MAILBOX.SLAC.Stanford.EDU
Date: Mon, 9 Sep 1996 01:01:16 -0700

  Often, this is caused by an NFS file lock. Don't ask me how it got
  there in the first place. To remove the file lock, do the following:

    # cd /var/spool/mail
    # cp user /tmp/user.tmp; rm user	# save mail; remove locked file
    # chown user /tmp/user.tmp		# allow user to inc old mail
    # su - user
    user% inc -file user.tmp		# incorporate user's old mail

  Any mail that you receive in the fraction of a second that the
  second set of commands takes will be lost.

  (See also "Why does inc hang (on Sun)?")

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Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:11 PM