Cannot open mailbox /var/mail/pi: Permission denied

This is on a Raspberry Pi, but should be the same on any Linux distro.

Error :

pi@raspberrypi:~ $ mail
Cannot open mailbox /var/mail/pi: Permission denied
No mail for pi
pi@raspberrypi:~ $ 

Fix :

sudo touch /var/mail/$USER
sudo chown $USER:mail /var/mail/$USER
sudo chmod 660 /var/mail/$USER

You can replace “$USER” if you need to run the commands for a different account.
Example:

sudo touch /var/mail/pi
sudo chown pi:mail /var/mail/pi
sudo chmod 660 /var/mail/pi

Leave a Reply