The OperatorChars option stores as its value a
sequence of characters, any one of which can be used to separate the
components of an address into tokens (Section 18.3).
Prior to V8.7 the $o macro fulfilled this
role. Beginning with V8.7, the OperatorChars
option has taken over:
O OperatorChars=.:%@!^=/[ ] beginning with V8.7
Do.:%@!^=/[ ] prior to V8.7
The list of separation operators declared with this option is joined
by sendmail to an internal list of hardcoded
The combined list is used in tokenizing the workspace for rule-set
processing. The order in which the characters appear in the
OperatorChars option declaration is arbitrary. The
space and tab characters need not be included in that list because
they are always used to separate tokens.
Care should be taken in eliminating any given character from this
list. Before doing so, the entire configuration file should be
examined in detail to be sure that no rule requires that character.
The use of the individual characters in addresses is beyond the scope
of this book. The book !%@:: A Directory of Electronic Mail
Addressing and Networks, by Donnalyn Frey and Rick Adams
(O'Reilly & Associates, 1993), contains the many
forms of addressing in great detail.
The OperatorChars option is used like this:
O OperatorChars=text configuration file (V8.7 and later)
-OOperatorChars=text command line (V8.7 and later)
define(`confOPERATORS',`text') mc configuration (V8.7 and later)
Dotext prior to V8.7
The text is of type
string. If it is missing and if the
configuration file version is less than 7,
sendmail tries to use the value of the
$o macro. If that macro is also undefined, a
default of .:@[ ] is used. If
text is longer than 39 characters, it is
truncated to 39 characters. In using the mc
technique, a default of .:%@!^/[ ]+ is used.
Note that this option must be defined before any
rule sets are declared. If you mistakenly declare a rule set first,
you will see the following warning:
Warning: OperatorChars is being redefined.
It should only be set before ruleset definitions.
The OperatorChars option is not safe. If specified
from the command line, it can cause sendmail to
relinquish its special privileges.