What is the Ubuntu way for system administrators to receive system notifications, which typically take the form of e-mail sent to the root account?
Examples of such notifications are the output of cron jobs, or degraded RAID notifications.
On a pretty much default Ubuntu 10.04 installation, I can't find any way that anything happens to root's mail other than being deposited in
/var/mail/root. How are users supposed to 1. discover it and 2. read it as it arrives?
I observe that on a warty, the installer added
root: myusername to
/etc/aliases. So back then the user who installed the system if (s)he read the local mail. So there seems to have been a regression somewhere along the way. Still this was not a complete solution, because Ubuntu users can't be expected to be aware that they have local mail and should set up their mail client to read it.
ADDED: given current replies, a server user should be able to cope, provided he's aware of the issue. Fair enough. But consider J. Random Desktop User, who doesn't know how to use a command line, and only knows how to click the mailbox icon to read his mail. How can he be notified that his system wants to tell him something? (Allow a one-time intervention by a more competent user if that's unavoidable.)