No Mail log on fresh install

OS type and version Debian 12
Virtualmin version 7.7

So I finally got back to upgrading my server. Went for a clean install of Debian, and virtualmin (although admittedly I was stupid and installed webmin first, found it didn’t have apache or mysql etc and started installing modules - tbh, probably installed almost everything when I realised I was missing virtualmin. Anyway, I installed that and restored my virtual hosts, had to make a few tweaks to deal with incompatible features (DAV, SVN, mod_php) and I was up and running but I just wanted to check something in my mail log and found I don’t have one

This is my system log viewer

I looked in /var/log and its not there either. I looked at unused modules and I have System Logs and System Logs NG but neither work

The systemd-journald service was detected on your system for collecting and storing logging data. It is recommended to use a new System Logs Viewer module instead.

The syslog configuration file /etc/rsyslog.conf was not found on your system. Maybe syslog is not installed, or a newer version like syslog-ng is in use, or the module configuration is incorrect.

The system logging daemon syslog-ng was not found on your system, or is not the syslog-ng program. Adjust the module configuration to use the correct path.


No Webmin module is responsible for creating mail logs (or any other system logs).

Just use the journal. (But, if you really need the mail.log, install rsyslog would do it in the same way it existed on older Debian versions and would not be going off-roading in an extreme way.)

All I really need is to be able to view my mail logs, I don’t care where the info comes from. I looked at the “all messages” entry from the system log viewer and there was no mail log stuff in there

This is known issue. I hope it will be fixed soon without installing rsyslog package. We discussed it in other post too.

As I mentioned in the other thread, the logs are now in the journal.

You can look at the journal in the System Logs Viewer. If you click on View next to Output from journalctl --lines 100, you can then search for postfix or saslauthd or dovecot, to get SMTP, authentication, or IMAP/POP logs, respectively. You may need to increase the number of lines, to find stuff that didn’t happen in the very recent past.

You may find it more fun to use journalctl directly.

You can do things like:

journalctl -fu postfix

To tail logs from the postfix unit.


journalctl --since=yesterday -u postfix

To see all logs from Postfix today. You can also do various searches and specify time ranges, etc. Very powerful tool.

You already do not need rsyslog You can view the journal in Webmin now. Some other threads have talked about one use of the mail.log (showing mail user last login time), which does require the mail.log or a new version of Virtualmin that isn’t out yet, but this thread is just about reading the log. And, that’s already possible.

Indeed, it is not a problem to read the logs for various systemd services using the journalctl command, but there are programs that need some log files being generated. For the moment I chose to install rsyslog until you find a solution.

I see, well that sorts me for now while I’m actively debugging but only being able to search the last 100 lines covers about 17 seconds. Less useful when my Mum emails to ask if an email she sent 3 days ago was actually sent ok :laughing:

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