Disable The Mail Alert By Crontab Command On a Linux or Unix-like Systems

How do I to disable the mail alert send by crontab? When my job is executed and the jobs cannot run normally it will sent an email to root. Why do I receive e-mails to my root account from cron? How can I prevent this? How can I disable email alert sent by cron jobs on a Linux or Unix-like systems?

The crontab command is used to maintain crontab files for individual users. By default the output of a command or a script (if any produced), will be email to your local email account. To stop receiving email output from crontab you need to append following strings at the end of crontab entry.[donotprint][/donotprint]

Cron job prevent the sending of errors and output

To prevent the sending of errors and output, add any one of the following at the end of the line for each cron job to redirect output to /dev/null.

>/dev/null 2>&1

OR

> /dev/null

OR

> /dev/null 2>&1 || true

Cron job example

Edit/Open your cron jobs, enter:
$ crontab -e
Append string >/dev/null 2>&1 to stop mail alert:

0 1 5 10 * /path/to/script.sh >/dev/null 2>&1

OR

0 1 5 10 * /path/to/script.sh > /dev/null

OR

0 * * * * /path/to/command arg1 > /dev/null 2>&1 || true

Save and close the file.

Set MAILTO variable

You can set MAILTO=”” variable at the start of your crontab file. This will also disable email alert. Edit/Open your cron jobs:
$ crontab -e
At the top of the file, enter:
MAILTO=""
Save and close the file.

This entry is 8 of 15 in the Linux Cron Jobs Howto & Tutorial series. Keep reading the rest of the series:

  1. What is cron on a Linux or Unix-like systems?
  2. HowTo: Add Jobs To cron Under Linux or UNIX?
  3. Linux Verify crond Daemon And Cronjobs Are Running
  4. Linux Start Restart and Stop The Cron or Crond Service
  5. Linux: List / Display All Cron Jobs
  6. Linux / UNIX Crontab File Location
  7. Linux / UNIX: Change Crontab Email Settings ( MAILTO )
  8. Disable The Mail Alert By Crontab Command On a Linux or Unix-like Systems
  9. Linux: At What Time Cron Entries In cron.daily, cron.weekly, cron.monthly Run?
  10. Linux Execute Cron Job After System Reboot
  11. Linux / UNIX Setup and Run PHP Script As A Cron Job
  12. How to run crontab job every minute on a Linux or Unix-like system
  13. Run crontab (cron jobs) Every 10 Minutes
  14. Cron Job Script Execution on the Last Day of a Month
  15. Run crontab (cron jobs) every 1 minute

Posted by: SXI ADMIN

The author is the creator of SXI LLC and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.