On SCO Unix OpenServer I am anable to read email using pop.

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Problem: On SCO Unix OpenServer I am anable to read email using pop.
Some clients are not able to pop their mail successfully. Common errors include:

  • Could not login to mail server.
  • Mailbox is being read by another session.
  • You are already reading this folder from another mail session.


There could be a lock file left by a popper or mail process that was unexpectedly terminated. The lock file contains the process ID of the popper process that was accessing the mailbox.

The filename is made up of the inode number of the specific user’s mailbox, followed by “.298”. For example, if the command “ls -i /usr/spool/mail/username” reports 47352, you would expect the mail lock file for the account “username” to be “/tmp/47352.298”.

This lock file gets created by popper when the user attempts to retrieve mail and also when mailx is used to read mail. The lock file is owned by the user account, with 400 permissions.

To fix this remove the nnnnn.298 file from /tmp

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