Configuring sendmail on Jaguar
Subject:   Exec format error at boot time
Date:   2003-03-12 15:42:58
First off, I'm running 10.1.5 and ran the sendmail update, although afterwards I thought perhaps I shouldn't have. (Software update tempted me!)

The new sendmail will not start at boot time. I have everything configured the way the "Update to Terminal part 3" article stated, and even had a look at this Jaguar article.

The entry created at boot time in the system.log file reads:

SystemStarter: Exec failed for item /System/Library/StartupItems/Sendmail: Exec format error

With that, sendmail is not running.

Strangely enough though, if I run this command manually:

sudo /System/Library/StartupItems/Sendmail

sendmail starts up fine!

I cannot for the life of me understand why it should work after booting when I do it, but not at boot time when SystemStarter tries to do it. (Yes, I have MAILSERVER=-YES-)

Does anyone have any idea? Help! I'm a little short of cash to buy Jaguar at present.


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Showing messages 1 through 2 of 2.

  • Solved
    2003-03-14 06:49:46 [View]

    This is a hack, but it seems to have worked:

    In the startup script for sendmail, located at, /System/Library/StartupItems/Sendmail/Sendmail, I added a line before the commands to start sendmail:

    sleep 10

    It seems that allowing the computer a pause, for some reason, allows sendmail to launch properly.

    I don't know how little a pause you can get away with -- I got tired of fooling around with the whole darn thing after a while.

    As always, your mileage may vary.
    • Better Soloution
      2003-05-22 04:53:50  haz [View]


      A better soloution to this problem (which is wide spread) is to edit your /System/Library/StartupItems/Sendmail/StartupParameters.plist

      Where it says "OrderPreference" type "Last" like this :

      OrderPreference = "Last";

      So my StartupParameters.plist looks like this :

      Description = "Sendmail mail server";
      Provides = ("SMTP");
      Requires = ("DirectoryServices");
      Uses = ("Disks", "Network Time", "NFS");
      OrderPreference = "Last";

      This should work as it worked for me (running 10.2.6)

      All this does is it tells the OS to start sendmail after it has started all the apps in "Uses" and "Requires".

      For more info on startup scripts go to

      Hope this has helped