Consecutive bounces and bounce deletion / database size


I can’t find the relevant info in the bounce management section of the handbook, but I read somewhere that even processed bounces should not be deleted if “simple” bounce management is used because the “consecutive” bounce count is calculated on the fly from the bounce table whenever bounces are processed. Still, there is an option to delete bounces > 2 months, as well as “unidentified bounces > 2 months”.

I’m asking because i have to move a phplist installation that has been active for a long time, and as such has a high count of bounces in the database partially dating back 15 years, all told nearly 1GB. I would really like to reduce the filesize significantly. The installation is using “simple” bounce rules, that is 5 Bounces > user will be unconfirmed.

So is it possible to delete bounces even when using “simple bounce management”? Would it be possible to simply delete bounces older than, say, a year in phpMyAdmin?

Thanks for any help!

you could install the housekeeping plugin, and it should do this for you.
read more about it here…

Thanks for that tip, @danwaterloo!

Just to follow up on the question, though: my logic goes like this: if five consecutive bounces lead to account blacklisting, then the latest blacklisted users will have been those whose emails bounced for the last five campaigns and it would be safe to delete the bounces resulting from the campaigns before because all those with five consecutive bounces from those campaigns will have also already been blacklisted.


phplist, while dynamically processing bounces, suddenly can’t find the related series of five bounces for those subscribers who have been blacklisted 2 years ago and thus removes these subscribers from the blacklist?

It would seem counterintuitive, but since the consecutive bounce count is apparently created dynamically from the bounces in the system, this seems like a possibility.

Can you or anyone confirm that’s not the case? Subscribers who have been blacklisted once will remain blacklisted regardless of any future bounce processing after the bounces that led to their blacklisting have been deleted.


An address would be would be marked unconfirmed, not blacklisted after bouncing on 5 consecutive campaigns.

Not finding bounces does NOT unblacklist someone, or confirm someone.

Thanks for that explanation!