Postmaster Filters

Pre-sorting standard mail done in a mail room takes care that not every piece of mail sent to the office goes to the same group of people. After a second look at the envelope, rerouting occurs where needed.

OTRS uses so-called postmaster filters to read the email’s envelope and take further action. Depending upon, for example, a subject or sender, an email bound for the service desk could land in a sub-queue or be redirected to a completely different team to create transparency and give your customer the fastest service possible.

Use this screen to add postmaster filters to the system. The postmaster filter management screen is available in the PostMaster Filters module of the Communication & Notifications group.

Postmaster Filter Management Screen

Postmaster Filter Management Screen

Manage Postmaster Filters


When adding or editing a postmaster filter, please keep in mind that they are evaluated in alphabetical order by name.

To add a postmaster filter:

  1. Click on the Add PostMaster Filter button in the left sidebar.
  2. Fill in the required fields.
  3. Click on the Save button.

To edit a postmaster filter:

  1. Click on a postmaster filter in the list of postmaster filters.
  2. Modify the fields.
  3. Click on the Save or Save and finish button.

To delete a postmaster filter:

  1. Click on the trash icon in the list of postmaster filters.
  2. Click on the Confirm button.
Delete Postmaster Filter Screen

Delete Postmaster Filter Screen


If several postmaster filters are added to the system, a filter box is useful to find a particular postmaster filter by just typing to filter.

Postmaster Filter Settings

The following settings are available when adding or editing this resource. The fields marked with an asterisk are mandatory.

Postmaster Filter Settings Example

Postmaster Filter Settings Example

Basic Postmaster Filter Settings

Postmaster Filter Settings - Basic

Postmaster Filter Settings - Basic

Name *

The name of this resource. Any type of characters can be entered to this field including uppercase letters and spaces. The name will be displayed in the overview table.


When adding or editing one of the postmaster filters, remember multiple filters may apply to a single mail. The last rule wins. Rules execute and sort by the ASCII value of the names. Based on the sorted order in the overview, they are applied top to bottom. Look to the ASCI chart to see how to sort your names based on the ASCII-bet.

Stop after match *

Postmaster filters are evaluated in alphabetical order. This setting defines the evaluation of the subsequent postmaster filters.

All postmaster filters are executed.
The current postmaster filter is still evaluated, but evaluation of the remaining filters is canceled.

Filter Condition

Postmaster Filter Settings - Filter Condition

Postmaster Filter Settings - Filter Condition

A postmaster filter consists of one or more conditions that must be met in order for the defined actions to be executed on the email. Filter conditions can be defined for specific mail header entries or for strings in the mail body.

Search header field

A list of mail header entries can be found in RFC5322. It is also possible to define X-OTRS headers as filter condition. The different X-OTRS headers and their meaning are the following:

This contains as value the number of attachments which are contained in the email (e.g. 0 for mails without attachments).
Depending on whether attachments are included in the email this X-OTRS header is set to yes, or it has a no value if no attachments are included.
If the incoming mail was encrypted, it is possible to add a search term to look for the body of the incoming encrypted mail.
Set the customer ID for the ticket.
Set the customer user for the ticket.
Saves an additional information value for the ticket on <DynamicFieldName> dynamic field. The possible values depend on dynamic field configuration (e.g. text: Notebook, date: 2010-11-20 00:00:00, integer: 1).
These headers are the same as the ones without the FollowUp prefix, but these headers are applied only for follow-up mails.
If set to 1, the incoming follow-up message will not change the ticket state. For this purpose the header can be customized in the system configuration using option KeepStateHeader.
If set to Yes or True, the incoming message will completely be ignored and never delivered to the system.
Controls if the article is shown to customer users. Possible values are 0 or 1.
Set the lock state of a ticket. Possible values are locked or unlocked.
If set to True, no auto answer is delivered to the sender of the message (mail loop protection).
Set the agent as owner for the ticket.
Set the agent ID as owner for the ticket.
Set the priority for the ticket.
Set the queue where the ticket shall be sorted. If this is set, all other filter rules that try to sort a ticket into a specific queue are ignored. If you use a sub-queue, specify it as Parent::Sub.
Set the agent as responsible for the ticket.
Set the agent ID as responsible for the ticket.
Set the sender type for the ticket. Possible values are agent, system or customer.
Set the service for the ticket. If you use a sub-service, specify it as Parent::Sub.
Set the service level agreement for the ticket.
Set the state for the ticket.

Set the pending time for the ticket (you also should sent a pending state via X-OTRS-State). You can specify absolute dates like 2010-11-20 00:00:00 or relative dates, based on the arrival time of the email. Use the form + $Number $Unit, where $Unit can be s (seconds), m (minutes), h (hours) or d (days). Only one unit can be specified. Examples of valid settings: +50s (pending in 50 seconds), +30m (30 minutes), +12d (12 days).


Settings like +1d 12h are not possible. You can specify +36h instead.

Set the title for the ticket.
Set the type for the ticket.


These headers must be manually injected into the mail by means not provided for by OTRS. OTRS only accepts X-OTRS headers from trusted sources.

See also

The Mail Account Settings defines the trust level.

for value
Enter a search term to this field. Even regular expressions can be used for extended pattern matching.
If checked, the condition will use the negate search term.

Set Email Headers

Postmaster Filter Settings - Set Email Headers

Postmaster Filter Settings - Set Email Headers

In this section you can choose the actions that are triggered if the filter rules match.

Set email header
Select an X-OTRS header. The X-OTRS headers are already described above.
with value
Add a value to this field that should be set as value of the selected X-OTRS header.