renewck - notify about domains due to expire


renewck [options]


The renewck utility monitors a set of Internet domains. For each configured domain it queries a whois server about its expiration date. If the domain is due to expire within a preconfigured time interval, renewck mails a notification about the fact.

The utility is intended to be started periodically as a cron job.

Renewck will re-send notifications until domain is renewed or finally expired. The notification schedule is as follows:

For each domain domain expiring within a month from the current date, a new notification is send each 3 days.

For domains expiring within two weeks, notifications are re-sent daily.

For domains expiring within a week, notifications are re-sent each 3 hours.



Adds listed domains to the list of monitored domains. Each domsrv is either a single domain name or a pair domain=server[:port], where server stands for the name of whois server to be queried for that domain, and optional port is a decimal port number to be used instead of the default 43.

Unless specified explicitely, the whois server to query is selected depending on the TLD of the domain. If no specific whois server found, the default one will be used. The default whois server is, unless set otherwise by the --whois-server option.

--file= FILE

Read domain names from the FILE . The file must list a single domain on each line. Optionally, a server[:port] specification is allowed after the domain name, separated from it by any amount of white space (see the --domain option for the description of that specification).

UNIX-like comments are allowed. Empty lines are ignored.


Sent notifications to email instead of to the user which invoked renewck.


A comma-separated list of addresses for the notification mail Cc: header.


Use text as the subject of notification emails. Any occurrence of $domain within the text is replaced with the name of the domain the notification is about.

The default subject line is:

$domain is due to expire

--notify-template= FILE

The file to be used as a template for the message body. The following variables are expanded within the template text: $domain, which is replaced with the domain the notification refers to, and $expiration, which expands to the expiration date in the preferred date and time representation for the current locale.


Sets the default whois server (instead of the hardcoded If port is also supplied, it will be used instead of the default port 43.


Many servers (in particular used by default), implement certain restrictions regarding maximum number of queries an IP address can make in a unit of time. To keep request rate within these policies, renewck introduces a 2-second delay between whois queries. This option allows to tune that delay.

--cache-file= FILE

Keep notification history in a GDBM database file named FILE . By default, it is .renewck.db in the user’s home directory.

--debug[=spec[,spec...]], -d[spec[,spec...]]

Set debugging level. A spec is either category or category=level, where category is a debugging category name and level is a decimal verbosity level. Valid categories are: "MAIN", "DBM" and "WHOIS" (all case-insensitive). If level is not supplied, 1 is used instead.

--help, -h

Show a terse help summary and exit.


Prints the manual page and exits.


The program reads its configuration from one of the following locations:
File name given by "RENEWCK_CONF" environment variable (if set)
The file .renewck.conf in the user home directory

The first existing file is read. It is an error if the $RENEWCK_CONF variable is set, but points to a file that does not exist. It is OK if $RENEWCK_CONF is not set and .renewck.conf does not exist. It is, however, an error if any of these file exists, but is not readable.

The configuration file has the usual UNIX configuration format. Empty lines and UNIX comments are ignored. Each non-empty line is either an option name, or option assignment, i.e. opt=val, with any amount of optional whitespace around the equals sign. Valid option names are the same as long command line options, but without the leading --.

For example:

file = domain.list
notify-cc = root


Sergey Poznyakoff <>

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