E-mail Storage Limitations

This document details SSCC policies and procedures established by the SSCC Steering Committee on storage space for e-mail.

Inbox Storage Space Limitations

Each user's incoming messages (the Inbox) get stored on SSCC's Linux mail server in a separate file under /var/spool/mail. When an Inbox exceeds 40 MB for over a week, the mail currently in the Inbox automatically gets moved to another mail folder in the user's mail directory. The mail only gets moved -- no incoming mail is bounced and no mail gets deleted.

Daily system-generated warning messages are sent to users when they have exceeded their Inbox limit. If a user exceeds the 40 MB limit for more than a week, the Inbox gets moved to the user's Linux mail directory into a new mail folder called Inbox_[date]. A message informing the user of this transfer is also sent. This folder will be accessible via the e-mail program just like any other folder once the mailbox list is "refreshed".

Why the Limit?

The size of Inboxes have a major impact on the performance of the SSCC's email server, as they are modified frequently. In addition, individuals' email programs will be very slow if they must work with a large Inbox. Keeping Inboxes relatively small avoids both these problems.

Automatic Deletion of Messages in Spam and Trash Folders

To save storage space, messages in Spam folder are deleted after 14 days, and messages in Trash folders are deleted after 30 days.