The Boston Diaries

The ongoing saga of a programmer who doesn't live in Boston, nor does he even like Boston, but yet named his weblog/journal “The Boston Diaries.”

Go figure.

Monday, November 05, 2007

And I thought I was being extravagant for using 20 megabytes for the greylist daemon

As if the problems I'm having getting the greylist daemon 64-bit clean and less Linux-centric weren't bad enough, today I find that the Sendmail client just stopped working. I checked the logs, and sure enough, the milter library is bitching up a storm:

Oct 31 17:32:08 XXXX smgl: Greylist Daemon: thread_create() failed: 12, try again
Oct 31 17:32:44 XXXX last message repeated 5 times
Oct 31 17:33:13 XXXX last message repeated 10 times
Oct 31 17:33:17 XXXX smgl: Greylist Daemon, mi_rd_cmd: read returned -1: Connection reset by peer
Oct 31 17:33:17 XXXX smgl: Greylist Daemon, mi_rd_cmd: read returned -1: Connection reset by peer
Oct 31 17:33:17 XXXX smgl: Greylist Daemon: thread_create() failed: 12, try again
Oct 31 17:33:50 XXXX last message repeated 13 times
Oct 31 17:34:52 XXXX last message repeated 28 times
Oct 31 17:35:54 XXXX last message repeated 34 times
Oct 31 17:37:02 XXXX last message repeated 21 times
Oct 31 17:38:05 XXXX last message repeated 7 times
Oct 31 17:39:11 XXXX last message repeated 16 times
Oct 31 17:40:20 XXXX last message repeated 7 times
Oct 31 17:41:31 XXXX last message repeated 8 times
Oct 31 17:41:50 XXXX smgl: Greylist Daemon: thread_create() failed: 12, try again
Nov  1 12:22:53 XXXX smgl: Address:
Nov  2 19:25:21 XXXX smgl: Greylist Daemon: mi_stop=1
Nov  2 19:27:56 XXXX smc: Address:

Okay. That mi_stop=1 doesn't look good; let me see what I can find out about that:

On Tue, 27 Jul 2004, Matt Selsky wrote:

Jul 27 09:12:20 clover mimedefang[22489]: [ID 649295] MIMEDefang-2.44: mi_stop=1

This is normal.



[Mimedefang] mi_stop=1 message in syslog

Lovely! Not only is it normal, but the only reference I found was dated 2004!

There was nothing at all about mi_rd_cmd returning -1, but I did find the following about the thread_create() failed: 12:

On Thu, 28 Oct 2004, Stephane Lentz wrote:

PS: a folk running Linux reported a similar problem but he's not runing RH. On Mandrake/SuSE I've never seen it. How much traffic do you process ? Which hardware ? Try to get some recommendations on system tuning from RH since you're paying $$$$ .

Here's some free advice: On RHEL3, type “ulimit -s”:

$ ulimit -s

So each thread wants 10MB of stack space. That can chew up your RAM pretty quickly. I recommend editing the MIMEDefang startup script and putting:

ulimit -s 2048

just before mimedefang (not the multiplexor!) is invoked.

Right now, the sample red hat script does it only if you have more than 100 slaves, but it should really do it unconditionally.



[Mimedefang] thread_create errors

Sweet Jesus! No wonder the Sendmail client sucks up memory like there's no tomorrow! Sheesh!

This doesn't appear to be a reprint of an Onion article—perhaps that's why I find this so frightening

The 23-year-old, who said she had left school without a maths GCSE, said: “On one of my cards it said I had to find temperatures lower than -8. The numbers I uncovered were -6 and -7 so I thought I had won, and so did the woman in the shop. But when she scanned the card the machine said I hadn't.

“I phoned Camelot and they fobbed me off with some story that -6 is higher—not lower—than -8 but I'm not having it.”

Via theferrett, ‘Cool Cash’ card confusion

No wonder the Week ly World News folded—it couldn't compete with the real news.

I wonder what grade this would get at the Harvard Business School?

And speaking of lotteries tax breaks for the smart

In 1992, a group of Australian investors—led by math whiz Stephan Mandel decided they could literally buy the $27 million jackpot in the Virginia state lottery. Racing against the clock, they bought 5.6 million of a total 7.1 million possible combinations.

The Australians walked away with the only winning ticket—and $27 million.

Big lotto jackpot not what it seems

Actually, I'm surprised this hasn't happened more often (or maybe it does and is underreported). In our own little lovely state of Florida, our little state lottery has a 22,957,480:1 odds of winning, so it would seem that somebody would try it, once the pot has grown to, maybe, three times that amount, which does happen, to make it profitable, if maybe a bit logistically daunting.

I would also expect that the Australians probably did a bit better than the $27 million, because lesser combinations (like 5 out of 6) also pay out.

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