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First time poster, long time lurker. I am currently rebuilding my postfix/dovecot mail server for support with MYSQL and am unable to figure out which auth mechanism to use.

dovecot: auth: Fatal: No passdbs specified in configuration file. CRAM-MD5 mechanism needs one
dovecot: master: Error: service(auth): command startup failed, throttling
dovecot: imap-login: Error: Timeout waiting for handshake from auth server. my pid=24209, input bytes=0

From my /etc/dovecot-sql.conf file:

driver = mysql
connect = host= dbname=mail user=mail_admin password=super_secret_password
default_pass_scheme = CRYPT
password_query = SELECT email as user, password FROM users WHERE email='%u';

I recently put auth_mechanisms = login cram-md5 in the dovecot.conf, if the line isn't there it appears that plain login is selected by dovecot by default.

From 10-master.conf:

auth default {
    user = root

    passdb sql {
        args = /etc/dovecot-sql.conf

    userdb static {
        args = uid=5000 gid=5000 home=/home/vmail/%d/%n allow_all_users=yes

    socket listen {
        master {
            path = /var/run/dovecot/auth-master
            mode = 0600
            user = vmail

        client {
            path = /var/spool/postfix/private/auth
            mode = 0660
            user = postfix
            group = postfix

I will provide any config file or other information that is necessary. I'm pretty clueless so any information would be very appreciated.

For reference, I followed this tutorial loosely.

share|improve this question
Shouldn't you close the { for auth default?? –  NickW Mar 15 '13 at 16:30
It's enclosing the entire quote and is the last bracket. –  gnunix Mar 15 '13 at 16:40
If that's the entire quote, you're missing one, you close the client, and the master, but the default is opened, but not closed.. –  NickW Mar 15 '13 at 16:44
My apologies, I didn't paste it correctly fully. The closing bracket is definitely in use and the quote is now corrected. –  gnunix Mar 15 '13 at 16:53
Ok, much better, if you change the location of the auth from the 10-master.conf to 10-auth.conf file does that change anything? –  NickW Mar 15 '13 at 17:06

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