SUMMARY: NFS mount /var/mail vs POP mail

From: D. Ellen March (
Date: Tue Jun 24 1997 - 17:50:31 CDT

Many commented that I should look into IMAP instead of or in
addition to POP. Also, many suggested that auto mounting
/var/mail vs hard mounting /var/mail would work. Also suggested
was using aliases/sendmail to redirect mail from the mail server
to the users' individual machines instead of a shared /var/mail.

I decided to take that last suggestion for the majority of
our users, and let the rest choose between nfs mounting /var/mail
or using POP.

Thanks go to:
Alex Soares <>
Chris Marble <>
Dan Pritts <>
David Fetrow <>
Francis Liu <>
Harvey Wamboldt <> (James Wendling) (Larry Zins)
Linda Cygan <> (Marc S. Gibian)
"Mark Baldwin" <>
Michael Kohne <> (Neal S. Pressman ex 2317)
Stefan <>
Stephen Harris <> (Walter R. Moore)

Original query:
> We have an all sun network, all running 2.5.1, running NIS+.
> We have about 200 users, 100 machines.
> Currently, we mount /var/mail from the mail server on all
> 100 machines. Of course, if the mail server needs to be
> rebooted, we have to umount and mount /var/mail all over
> again on all those machines. Also, I suspect this arrangement
> contributes a bunch to network traffic.
> We just installed QPopper2.2 on a sparc5, 170 mhz, 32mg of ram.
> I would like to recommend that our users get their mail using
> a pop client, rather than mounting /var/mail over NFS.
> Could that machine handle that amount of users polling for
> mail approx every 30 seconds each using POP? Actually, at any one
> time we probably only have 50 -75 users logged in.
> Does this even sound like a good idea? I would be interested
> in the pros and cons.


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