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Error from AOL: Deferred: Bad file descriptor?

Recently our mail from our e-commerce site has been rejected by AOL due
to an IP block because someone was using our PHP scripts to send spam.
Well, I got that fixed.
But our legitimate auto-generated e-mails are getting "deferred" by AOL
now with an error:
Deferred: Bad file descriptor

I can't find anything on their support site about this, nor Googling.
Any ideas?

Here's an example of an email sent by us. Best I can figure out, "file
descriptor" indicates the format of the e-mail, but I'm pretty sure I
have that right.

Well, thanks for any suggestions or feedback!
-Liam

Return-Path: <g>
Received: from (our domain).com (localhost [127.0.0.1])by (server
name).(our domain).com (8.13.1/8.13.1) with ESMTP id k0PNeuPW006683f or
<(aol username)@AOL.C OM>; Wed, 25 Jan 2006 17:40:56 -0600
Full-Name: Apache
Received: (from apache@localhos t)by (our domain name).com
(8.13.1/8.13.1/Submit) id k0PNeueJ006679; Wed, 25 Jan 2006 17:40:56
-0600
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 17:40:56 -0600
Message-Id: <200601252340.k 0PNeueJ006679@( our domain name).com>
To: (aol username)@AOL.C OM
Subject: Cards - ORDER 37329
From: Printing.Order@ (our domain name).com
Reply-To: customerservice @(our domain name).com
Content-type: text/html; charset=iso-8859-1
<HTML>
<HEAD>
</HEAD>
<BODY BGCOLOR="white" ><center><b>STU DIO DETAILS</b><br>
<table width="450" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" border="0">
<tr>
<td width="150" align="right">A ccount ID:&nbsp;</td>

<td width="300" align="left">bc tcom</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="150" align="right">C ompany:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="300" align="left">(C ompany name)</td>
</tr>
<tr>

<td width="150" align="right">F older:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="300" align="left">/bct/</td>
</tr>
</table><br>
<b>ORDER DETAILS</b><br>
<table width="300" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" border="0">
<tr>

<td width="150" align="right">O rder #:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="150" align="left">37 329</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="150" align="right">T otal Charge:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="150" align="left">$6 9.00</td>

etc etc...

Jan 26 '06 #1
7 6860
ne**@celticbear .com wrote:
I can't find anything on their support site about this, nor Googling.
Any ideas?


try googling again. it works for me.
Jan 26 '06 #2
>Recently our mail from our e-commerce site has been rejected by AOL due
to an IP block because someone was using our PHP scripts to send spam.
Well, I got that fixed.
But our legitimate auto-generated e-mails are getting "deferred" by AOL
now with an error:
Deferred: Bad file descriptor
This is either a problem with your procedure for SENDING the mail,
or a configuration problem at AOL that you can't fix. Are you
opening a SMTP connection to AOL's servers DIRECTLY from PHP?
I doubt it. It's probably a problem between your PHP and your
sendmail or whatever you are using to send mail.

Of course, some hosts put out misleading error messages. I doubt
AOL would do this because of the support problems it would cause.
But I have seen things like:

550 No such user
means the email address doesn't exist.
550 No such user.
means "you've been banned for spamming".
550 no such user
means "you've been banned for sending viruses".
550 no such User
means "you've been banned due to complaints from customers"

I can't find anything on their support site about this, nor Googling.
Any ideas?
It's likely not their problem.
Here's an example of an email sent by us. Best I can figure out, "file
descriptor" indicates the format of the e-mail, but I'm pretty sure I
have that right.
"file descriptor" represents an open file (Windows might call it a "handle").
It's a much more basic problem than nitpicking about headers in email.
Return-Path: <g> That return-path looks pretty darn wierd.
Received: from (our domain).com (localhost [127.0.0.1])by (server
name).(our domain).com (8.13.1/8.13.1) with ESMTP id k0PNeuPW006683f or
<(aol username)@AOL.C OM>; Wed, 25 Jan 2006 17:40:56 -0600
Full-Name: Apache
Received: (from apache@localhos t)by (our domain name).com
(8.13.1/8.13.1/Submit) id k0PNeueJ006679; Wed, 25 Jan 2006 17:40:56
-0600
Date: Wed, 25 Jan 2006 17:40:56 -0600
Message-Id: <200601252340.k 0PNeueJ006679@( our domain name).com>
To: (aol username)@AOL.C OM
Subject: Cards - ORDER 37329
From: Printing.Order@ (our domain name).com
Does the email address Printing.Order@ (our domain name).com actually
accept email? There are quite a few hosts that will reject an email
if it doesn't.
Reply-To: customerservice @(our domain name).com
Content-type: text/html; charset=iso-8859-1
<HTML>
<HEAD>
</HEAD>
<BODY BGCOLOR="white" ><center><b>STU DIO DETAILS</b><br>
<table width="450" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" border="0">
<tr>
<td width="150" align="right">A ccount ID:&nbsp;</td>

<td width="300" align="left">bc tcom</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="150" align="right">C ompany:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="300" align="left">(C ompany name)</td>
</tr>
<tr>

<td width="150" align="right">F older:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="300" align="left">/bct/</td>
</tr>
</table><br>
<b>ORDER DETAILS</b><br>
<table width="300" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" border="0">
<tr>

<td width="150" align="right">O rder #:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="150" align="left">37 329</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width="150" align="right">T otal Charge:&nbsp;</td>
<td width="150" align="left">$6 9.00</td>

etc etc...


Gordon L. Burditt
Jan 26 '06 #3

Gordon Burditt wrote:
Recently our mail from our e-commerce site has been rejected by AOL due
to an IP block because someone was using our PHP scripts to send spam.
Well, I got that fixed.
But our legitimate auto-generated e-mails are getting "deferred" by AOL
now with an error:
Deferred: Bad file descriptor
This is either a problem with your procedure for SENDING the mail,
or a configuration problem at AOL that you can't fix. Are you
opening a SMTP connection to AOL's servers DIRECTLY from PHP?
I doubt it. It's probably a problem between your PHP and your
sendmail or whatever you are using to send mail.

Uhm.. nooo... I don't think so.
I'm using the mail() function in PHP. So I guess PHP does some funky
stuff and then opens the connection.
To troubleshoot I'll investigate how to open an SMTP connection
directly.
(If I recall, a few years ago when I was learning ASP, I think that's
the way it had to be done using DONTS(sp) objects....)

[..]
Here's an example of an email sent by us. Best I can figure out, "file
descriptor" indicates the format of the e-mail, but I'm pretty sure I
have that right.


"file descriptor" represents an open file (Windows might call it a "handle").
It's a much more basic problem than nitpicking about headers in email.
Return-Path: <g>

That return-path looks pretty darn wierd.

Yeah. I copied the header off the Webmin GUI for e-mail cache, and that
"ng" is actually a little icon that I think represents a binary or some
non-ascii character.
I saw that and wondered about that. But when I view the e-mail through
a client like Thunderbird, it says:
Return-Path: <apache@(my domain name).com>
So I don't get why it would be non-ascii through Webmin but OK in a
client.

2ndly, and I have no idea if this is related, I actually define
Return-Path in the header variable in the PHP code, and it's supposed
to be <Printing.Order @(our domain name).com> but that seems to be
ignored. Odd.

[..]
Subject: Cards - ORDER 37329
From: Printing.Order@ (our domain name).com


Does the email address Printing.Order@ (our domain name).com actually
accept email? There are quite a few hosts that will reject an email
if it doesn't.


Yeah, I made sure that's a legit e-mail address. Although it forwards
to our customerservice account. But you can email that address
directly.

Thanks for the feedback!
I'll look into the direct SMTP connection and digging deeper into the
Return-Path.
-Liam

Jan 26 '06 #4
ne**@celticbear .com wrote:
Gordon Burditt wrote:

Return-Path: <g>

That return-path looks pretty darn wierd.


It's a macro and those are encoded as 8 bit characters.

About the original error message: upgrade to 8.13.5 and see whether the
problem goes away, there have been some fixes for problems like this
(check the release notes).

--
Note: please read the netiquette before posting. I will almost never
reply to top-postings which include a full copy of the previous
article(s) at the end because it's annoying, shows that the poster
is too lazy to trim his article, and it's wasting the time of all readers.
Jan 26 '06 #5

Claus Amann -no-copies-please wrote:
ne**@celticbear .com wrote:
Gordon Burditt wrote:
>Return-Path: <g>
That return-path looks pretty darn wierd.


It's a macro and those are encoded as 8 bit characters.

Ah, that solves that. Although I still need to figure out why it's not
accepting my PHP defined Return-Path in the header variable.
But that's an answer I can probably find by searching.
About the original error message: upgrade to 8.13.5 and see whether the
problem goes away, there have been some fixes for problems like this
(check the release notes).


This is embarassing... how do I find my current version of Sendmail?
"man sendmail" and "man mail" doesn't give me any help (that I can
find.)
I tried reading through the release notes... wow! So many different
bugs and errors each version fixes! Who'da thunk that any number of
weird behavior I've seen with e-mail over the years actually could have
something to do with the server software!

Thanks for the reply!
-Liam

Jan 26 '06 #6
>> >Recently our mail from our e-commerce site has been rejected by AOL due
>to an IP block because someone was using our PHP scripts to send spam.
>Well, I got that fixed.
>But our legitimate auto-generated e-mails are getting "deferred" by AOL
>now with an error:
>Deferred: Bad file descriptor
This is either a problem with your procedure for SENDING the mail,
or a configuration problem at AOL that you can't fix. Are you
opening a SMTP connection to AOL's servers DIRECTLY from PHP?
I doubt it. It's probably a problem between your PHP and your
sendmail or whatever you are using to send mail.

Uhm.. nooo... I don't think so.
I'm using the mail() function in PHP. So I guess PHP does some funky
stuff and then opens the connection.


Usually PHP hands off the mail to the local sendmail, or another
local (network) mail server. You cannot just send all your mail
to AOL's mail server (unless you're an AOL customer) - you only
send stuff there that is supposed to go to AOL. Spammers have
abused that so any server that allows relaying like that for anyone
gets itself banned. PHP does not try to perform the full functions
of a mail server: looking up MX records and figuring where to send
mail, retrying mail in case of down servers, sending bounce messages,
etc. And it probably shouldn't.
To troubleshoot I'll investigate how to open an SMTP connection
directly.
You probably should NOT be trying to do this for production work.
Let your mail server (not PHP code) or your ISP's mail server handle
it. A mail server needs to run as a daemon or be periodically run
from cron, not occasionally from a web server.
(If I recall, a few years ago when I was learning ASP, I think that's
the way it had to be done using DONTS(sp) objects....)

[=2E.]
>Here's an example of an email sent by us. Best I can figure out, "file
>descriptor" indicates the format of the e-mail, but I'm pretty sure I
>have that right.
"file descriptor" represents an open file (Windows might call it a "handl=

e").
It's a much more basic problem than nitpicking about headers in email.
>Return-Path: <=81g>

That return-path looks pretty darn wierd.

Yeah. I copied the header off the Webmin GUI for e-mail cache, and that
"ng" is actually a little icon that I think represents a binary or some
non-ascii character.
I saw that and wondered about that. But when I view the e-mail through
a client like Thunderbird, it says:
Return-Path: <apache@(my domain name).com>
So I don't get why it would be non-ascii through Webmin but OK in a
client.

2ndly, and I have no idea if this is related, I actually define
Return-Path in the header variable in the PHP code, and it's supposed
to be <Printing.Order @(our domain name).com> but that seems to be
ignored. Odd.


Setting the envelope-sender may be restricted by the local sendmail.

[=2E.]
>Subject: Cards - ORDER 37329
>From: Printing.Order@ (our domain name).com


Does the email address Printing.Order@ (our domain name).com actually
accept email? There are quite a few hosts that will reject an email
if it doesn't.


Yeah, I made sure that's a legit e-mail address. Although it forwards
to our customerservice account. But you can email that address
directly.

Thanks for the feedback!
I'll look into the direct SMTP connection and digging deeper into the
Return-Path.
-Liam


Gordon L. Burditt
Jan 26 '06 #7
ne**@celticbear .com wrote:
This is embarassing... how do I find my current version of Sendmail?


The FAQ answers it. However, it was also in your first posting:

Received: from (our domain).com (localhost [127.0.0.1])by (server
name).(our domain).com (8.13.1/8.13.1) with ESMTP id k0PNeuPW006683f or
^^^^^^

--
Note: please read the netiquette before posting. I will almost never
reply to top-postings which include a full copy of the previous
article(s) at the end because it's annoying, shows that the poster
is too lazy to trim his article, and it's wasting the time of all readers.
Jan 27 '06 #8

This thread has been closed and replies have been disabled. Please start a new discussion.

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