Configuring Mail Hail

Mail Hail's configuration file location is /etc/mailhail.conf by default, but it can be changed at compile time by editing A sample configuration file with documentation is provided in the "samples" directory of the Mail Hail package.

Copy the sample file to /etc/mailhail.conf and edit it to reflect your Jabber server. The server's port and authentication method are optional. If they are omitted, port 5222 and digest authentication will be used. Transport configuration is optional. If it is omitted, no transports will be used. You must change the hostname, and you will also want to change the password used to authenticate.

Mail Hail must have an account with each instant messaging service in order to send messages to its users. An account on a Jabber server is required regardless of which services you wish to contact. Mail Hail can register its own Jabber account. Registration of accounts on other services must be done through those services.

Mail Hail uses XMPP transports to contact other services. You must install the appropriate transport for each service or have access to a Jabber server that provides the transport. Each transport is identified on its server by a Jabber ID. To configure a transport, enter its Jabber ID in Mail Hail's configuration file along with appropriate account information for the associated service. To use a transport, invoke Mail Hail with the Jabber ID of a user addressed to a configured transport.

Some transports require a passive connection. These transports wait for clients to send an available presence before accepting messages. Mail Hail normally operates with unavailable presence because it is not interactive. Without passive mode, a passive transport will cause Mail Hail to hang when connecting. If a transport connection hangs, try adding a passive tag to the configuration of the transport. Passive mode takes more time to establish a connection, so it should be used only as necessary.


mailhail --check

to check the syntax of Mail Hail's configuration file and inspect its contents for correctness.


mailhail --register

to create Mail Hail's account on your Jabber server. Mail Hail is now installed on your system.