I have a confounding challenge.

Email addresses are placed on hold after having bounced (where bounce type is Quota).

I looked at the actual bounce messages (see an example attached below) for some of the email addresses which bounced with bounce type=quota and the messages indicate that the email job exceeded the outgoing email sending quota on the sending server (this is an issue I plan to look into and resolve later).

However, What is strange is that email addresses to which email could not be 'sent' because sending server quota for outgoing email has been exceeded is now marked as onHold.

Another strange but related observation, is that there is an actual bounce email message - which should not be the case if the original email never left the outgoing server.

My questions:

  1. Could the bounce email message be wrong and the email was actually sent but the receiving inbox is full?
  2. If not, what am I missing?

Thanks a lot in advance!

One of the Bounce email messages

1 Answer 1


Unfortunately, the bounce messages aren't standardized, so pretty much every mail server has their own text to say that the account doesn't exist, or that the mailbox is full or any of the bounce reason.

So what civimail has to do is to look at these emails and parse them to find keywords "INVALID MAILBOX", "DNS error" and if that specific keywords are found, flag the bounce accordingly.

Unfortunately for you, "quota" is one of these keywords, and to add insult to injury, your mail server puts a "this is a permanent error", but clearly is is not the case, as it would go through.

You could try to look at these rules in civi and try to come up with a new one for your "quota" email and flag it as a temporary bounce, but it means going into the database directly to update and create these rules.

I would suggest you that your time is too valuable for that and it would be cheaper to move to an hosting provider that doesn't have quota, or use an external mailing provider (eg mailjet, sendgrid...) to handle pushing your emails.

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