User unknown in virtual alias table

I have just re-installed Postfix after giving up with Sendmail. Sendmail is completely removed from the system (Ubuntu) and Virtualmin reports that it is set up to use Postfix. But, I am getting the ‘User unknown in virtual alias table’ bounce back report.

Not sure what I’m doing wrong. Help!

As you move from Sendmail to Postfix, your users wouldn’t be automatically migrated… there’s a file “/etc/postfix/virtual” that would contain a list of the various users setup on your server.

Also, your hostname needs to be listed on the “mydestination” line in /etc/postfix/


Yes, I’ve checked and I have those configured correctly. I can send emails to virtual domains where I am forwading the email to another address. But, it won’t accept those emails that should map to a local mailbox. That’s when I get the bounce back ‘User unknown in virtual alias table’.

If you’ve set “myorigin”, it will break delivery in about 99% of virtual hosting cases (everybody always sets it incorrectly). Leaving it unset will allow postfix to set it automatically (correctly). I don’t have any reason to think this is your problem, except that it is such a common mistake.

Beyond that, you’re going to need to give us some relevant maillog entries, and your The bounces could be caused by a damned near infinite variety of misconfigurations.

I removed the myorigin statement and that has stopped the bounce messages. But the email still does not arrive in the local mailbox. It arrives and disappears

Here is a log showing the report when it received an email:

Nov 17 11:40:02 ns1 postfix/pickup[31699]: 3AA94DA73A: uid=116 from=
Nov 17 11:40:02 ns1 postfix/cleanup[32431]: 3AA94DA73A: message-id=20091117114002.3AA94DA73A@myhostname
Nov 17 11:40:02 ns1 postfix/qmgr[28742]: 3AA94DA73A: from=smmsp@myhostname, size=655, nrcpt=1 (queue active)
Nov 17 11:40:03 ns1 postfix/local[32433]: 3AA94DA73A: to=justin@myhostname, orig_to=, relay=local, delay=1.6, delays=0.17/0.06/0/1.3, dsn=2.0.0, status=sent (delivered to command: /usr/bin/procmail-wrapper -o -a $DOMAIN -d $LOGNAME)
Nov 17 11:40:03 ns1 postfix/qmgr[28742]: 3AA94DA73A: removed

Seems that it gets delivered to Procmail and removed from the queue. Maybe Procmail not behaving itself? Here are the Procmail statements:

VIRTUALMIN=|/etc/webmin/virtual-server/ $LOGNAME

  • ?/usr/bin/test “$VIRTUALMIN” != “”


Well, procmail should actually be logging everything it’s doing – you can see that log in /var/log/procmail.log.

However, the “DEFAULT” and “ORGMAIL” lines above look suspect, as they’re typically pointing to “$HOME/Maildir/”.


Thanks Eric, Postfix / Procmail now working correctly. Yes, those procmail lines were inherited from the previous Sendmail install.