dovecot-lda(1) Dovecot's local mail delivery agent


dovecot-lda [-ek] [-a address] [-c config_file] [-d username] [-f envelope_sender] [-m mailbox] [-o setting=value] [-p path]


The dovecot-lda is a local mail delivery agent which takes mail from an MTA and delivers it to a user's mailbox, while keeping Dovecot index files up to date.

Main features of the dovecot-lda are:

Mailbox indexing during mail delivery, providing faster mailbox access later
Quota enforcing by the quota plugin
Sieve language support by the Pigeonhole sieve plugin


Options accepted by dovecot-lda:
-a address
Destination address (e.g. user+ext@domain). Default is the same as username.
-c config_file
Alternative configuration file path.
-d username
Destination username. If given, the user information is looked up from userdb. Typically used with virtual users, but not necessarily with system users.
If mail gets rejected, write the rejection reason to stderr and exit with status 77 (EX_NOPERM). The default is to send a rejection mail ourself.
-f envelope_sender
Envelope sender address.
Don't clear all environment at startup.
-m mailbox
Destination mailbox (default is INBOX). If the mailbox doesn't exist, it will not be created (unless the lda_mailbox_autocreate setting is set to yes). If a message couldn't be saved to the mailbox for any reason, it's delivered to INBOX instead.
-o setting=value
Overrides the configuration setting from /etc/dovecot/dovecot.conf and from the userdb with the given value. In order to override multiple settings, the -o option may be specified multiple times.
-p path
Path to the mail to be delivered instead of reading from stdin. If using maildir the file is hard linked to the destination if possible. This allows a single mail to be delivered to multiple users using hard links, but currently it also prevents deliver from updating cache file so it shouldn't be used unless really necessary.


dovecot-lda will exit with one of the following values:
Delivery was successful. (EX_OK)
Invalid parameter given. (EX_USAGE)
-e option was used and mail was rejected. Typically this happens when user is over quota and quota_full_tempfail = no is configured. (EX_NOPERM)
A temporary failure. This is returned for almost all failures. See the log file for details. (EX_TEMPFAIL)


Dovecot's main configuration file.
Mailbox locations and namespaces.
LDA specific settings.
Plugin specific settings.
Quota configuration.


Report bugs, including doveconf -n output, to the Dovecot Mailing List <[email protected]>. Information about reporting bugs is available at: