Resolved — phplist – handling bounces

Objective is to receive bounces when phpList encounters a bad email address.

This is the link to the phplist documentation on bounces.



Settings for handling bounces



# Message envelope. This is the email that system messages come from
# it is useful to make this one where you can process the bounces on
# you will probably get a X-Authentication-Warning in your message
# when using this with sendmail
# NOTE: this is *very* different from the From: line in a message
# to use this feature, uncomment the following line, and change the email address
# to some existing account on your system
# requires PHP version > “4.0.5” and “4.3.1+” without safe_mode
$message_envelope = ‘’;

# Handling bounces. Check README.bounces for more info
# This can be ‘pop’ or ‘mbox’
$bounce_protocol = ‘pop’;

# set this to 0, if you set up a cron to download bounces regularly by using the
# commandline option. If this is 0, users cannot run the page from the web
# frontend. Read README.commandline to find out how to set it up on the
# commandline

# when the protocol is pop, specify these three
$bounce_mailbox_host = ‘’;
$bounce_mailbox_user = ‘’;
$bounce_mailbox_password = ‘Secret-password’;

# the “port” is the remote port of the connection to retrieve the emails
# the default should be fine but if it doesn’t work, you can try the second
# one. To do that, add a # before the first line and take off the one before the
# second line

#$bounce_mailbox_port = “110/pop3/notls”;
#$bounce_mailbox_port = “110/pop3”;
$bounce_mailbox_port = “995/pop3/ssl/novalidate-cert”;

# when the protocol is mbox specify this one
# it needs to be a local file in mbox format, accessible to your webserver user
#$bounce_mailbox = ‘/var/spool/mail/listbounces’;

# set this to 0 if you want to keep your messages in the mailbox. this is potentially
# a problem, because bounces will be counted multiple times, so only do this if you are
# testing things.
$bounce_mailbox_purge = 1;

# set this to 0 if you want to keep unprocessed messages in the mailbox. Unprocessed
# messages are messages that could not be matched with a user in the system
# messages are still downloaded into PHPlist, so it is safe to delete them from
# the mailbox and view them in PHPlist
$bounce_mailbox_purge_unprocessed = 1;

# how many bounces in a row need to have occurred for a user to be marked unconfirmed
$bounce_unsubscribe_threshold = 5;


There was some reference in a forum to phpmailer — I originally thought this was needed, but isn’t.

I’m using webmail to monitor the bounce account.

Phplist can then be manually told to look for any bounces and can then allow you to process and update the list

The reference to: $bounce_mailbox_port = “995/pop3/ssl/novalidate-cert”; was found in a forum as a recommendation

I believe after phplist processes the bounce, I’ve set it correctly to delete the email from the bounce account

Couldn’t quite figure out how to turn off safe mode — didn’t find within config.php and is definitely an ongoing challenge by not having full access to the server for things like cron and restarting, etc

About Paul

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