sendfax (8) - Linux Manuals

sendfax: send group 3 fax files (G3 files) with a class 2 faxmodem


sendfax - send group 3 fax files (G3 files) with a class 2 faxmodem


sendfax [-p] [-x<debuglevel>] [-v] [-l<modemlines>] [-m<initstring>] [-d<polldirectory>] [-C<modemclass>] [-S] [-n] [-r] [-D<dialprefix>] phone-number [g3file(s)]


Send the named g3 fax files to the fax machine at "phone number". The g3 files can be created with pbm2g3(1) or GNU's GhostScript with the "digifax" driver.


Tells sendfax to try fax polling, that is, get any documents queued in the remote fax machine for you (used for weather maps and the like)
-x <debug level>
Use the given level of verbosity for logging - 0 means no logging, 5 is really noisy.
Give some progress report on stdout.
-l <modem lines>
Use the given modem lines. Multiple lines can be separated by ":". Example: sendfax -l tty1a:tty2a
-m <initstring>
Send an additional init string. This string is sent right after initializing the modem and setting it into class 2 mode. You can use this to set the speaker value, some special registers, whatsoever. The modem must return "OK". If it returns "ERROR", sendfax prints an error message and aborts. You do not have to prepend the "AT" prefix, but it won't do harm either.
-d <directory>
Specify the directory where polled fax files should go to. Defaults to "." for the current directory. Unused if not polling a fax.
-C <class>
Tells sendfax how to treat the modem. Possible values for <class> are "auto" (default, try to find out which fax command set the modem supports), "cls2" (use the class 2 fax command set, even if the modem claims to support class 2.0) and "c2.0" (use the class 2.0 fax command set). Obviously, "data" (which is valid for "mgetty -C ...") is not of much use here.
Assume modem connection on stdin, do not try to lock or initialize anything. To take over existing connection (for interworking with vgetty use with a dial string of "T1" (just a short beep, no phone number at all would confuse many modems, a pulse dialed number may confuse the telco switch) and "-m ATX1" (do not wait for dial tone).
Tells sendfax to send the fax pages in ``normal'' (204x98 dpi) mode. Default is ``fine'' mode (204x196 dpi).
If this option is given, sendfax will rename all the fax G3 files to ``<filename>.done'' after successfully sending this. This is intended to be used from ``faxrunq'', to make sure that a partially-sended fax isn't retransmitted as a whole every time.

If this option is set, sendfax will not (!) complain if not all files named on the command line exist.

-D <dial prefix>
Override the default (set by sendfax.config or in policy.h) for the 'ATxxx' command to dial the remote number. This is rarely used from the command line, but you might want to use it in combination with faxrunqd's policy routing option (see example in faxrunqd.policy(5)).
-M <max speed>
Sets the maximum transmission (modem to modem) speed. This is only needed in very rare cases, because normally the modems negotiate the correct speed automatically. Example: "-M 7200".
-R <max tries>
Sets the maximum number of attempts to transmit a given page, before sendfax gives up on this page. Normally it's not needed to change this - the default is "(up to) 3 tries" and that works quite well for most environments.


If compiled accordingly, sendfax can read all its configuration from at run-time from a file, usually called /etc/mgetty+sendfax/sendfax.config. See the documentation in the manual for details.


sendfax returns an error code, according to the reason why the program terminated. If everything went OK, sendfax returns 0. If ``harmless'' errors (didn't cost money) occured, an error code below 10 is returned. If a dial attempt failed after the remote end picked up (it will cost money), a return code of 10 or higher is returned.

In Detail, the return codes are as follows:

all pages have been transmitted successfully
error on the sendfax command line
cannot open fax device (e.g. due to locked modem)
cannot initialize modem (e.g. modem switched off)
dialup failed with BUSY
dialup failed with NO DIALTONE
dialup failed with ERROR or NO CARRIER (modem handshake failed)
waiting for XON failed (rarely seen)
transmitting or polling page(s) failed (connection dropped)

Very detailed debug information is written to the log file. It can be found in "/var/log/sendfax.log". If it doesn't contain enough details, enhance the log level with the "-x" option to sendfax, e.g. "-x 5".

Many of the common problems and solutions are discussed in the mgetty manual and the FAQ. Please see the WWW page at for both.


The standard for Group 3 fax is defined in CCITT Recommendation T.4.


sendfax should be able to put a header on the page.

sendfax should be able to read TIFF g3 input files.


sendfax is Copyright (C) 1993 by Gert Doering, <gert [at]>.


g3cat(1), pbm2g3(1), mgetty(1), faxspool(1), faxrunq(1), faxrunqd(8)