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I've got Postfix 2.5.5 running on a Debian 5.0 server. Very small volume, no incoming mail, only sending out occasional notification emails sent from a web app and internal (system) emails like cron notifications. Web application sends mails using SMTP to localhost.

A few days ago, during a spike of web traffic, monitoring graphs for queue levels went up, and maildrop queue stays at 40 since then. Monitoring graphs number of files in /var/spool/postfix/*. After looking in, I see about 40 empty files in /var/spool/postfix/maildrop/.

When I use 'sendmail' after shutting down Postfix, a file appears in maildrop but it contains binary data; after starting Postfix, it disappears and mail is delivered. I can't find any information on empty files in the queue directory - is it expected? Harmful in any way? Or is making graphs look ugly its only function? Can I safely delete these files?

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If they are empty, it probably won't hurt to delete them. Not sure why there are empty files in your queue, could be any number of reasons. When you delete them, make sure you use postsuper -d <queue_id>.

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Maybe this will help figure this out: or

Seems like quota related problem (?)

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Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference. – Bart De Vos Nov 16 '11 at 12:57
This answer is not relevant at all. Linked posts are about the maildrop program, which can be used as mail delivery agent with Postfix (but is not in this case). My question was about Postfix' maildrop queue, which is used to locally queue new emails, and is a built-in part of Postfix. Besides its name, it is unrelated to the maildrop program your answer refers to. – Maciej Pasternacki Nov 16 '11 at 15:46

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