I was completing the instructions in finding MySQL's password, when I saw this

[some image of virus mails but lost]

My var at Root has the folder /var/virusmails which name is strange.

The user of the folder is _amavisd which I do not know. The same user has also the folder amavis such that

0 drwxr-xr-x   6 _amavisd  _amavisd   204B May 31  2008 amavis
0 drwxr-xr-x   2 _amavisd  _amavisd    68B May 31  2008 virusmails

Amavis seems to be a virus-scanner provider. However, I have not installed the files. This suggests me that the files are built into OS X.

I am interested in which components use the virus-scanner in OS X. I have never noted it to be running.

Which OS X components need the Amavis Virus-scanner?


Amavis is in the default installation of Mac OS X. It can be used with SMTP server like Postfix (also installed with mac os x).
But even if it comes with all Mac OS X installation, it is here to be used by Mac OS X server.
But of course, by configuring manually postfix and amavis on mac os x client you could use them.

There is a web page on Apple website about amavis. The doc is outdated as amavis now comes with OS X and don't have to be installed but it explains how it works and what it do.

  • @radius: Thank you for your answers! --- So the point is that the folder /var/virusmails/ is particularly for Mac OS X Server. – Léo Léopold Hertz 준영 Jul 4 '09 at 17:17

Answers to user982671's questions

There has been changes in OSX after this discussion. They have removed the folder /var/virusmails/. I am not sure if it still part of the system, since other units can handle probably similar tasks. The application has been under active development, recent change three days ago (22.10.2014) for internalised mails.

Answer to old question: I think this program has much more function than just "virus scanning":

  • sanitize passed messages using an external sanitizer

so it is a program for security. See full list of functions in updated Wiki article.

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