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Frequently Asked Questions About Mailman

General

What are the alternative options to Mailman?

    • Blackboard is best for instructors to email to their classes.
      Instructions are on the Faculty How-To Guides page
      http://www.ohio.edu/oit/bbsupport/howto/faculty/index.cfm
      look under the "Communication and Collaboration Tool" heading (or search "email")
      select "How do I send an email via Blackboard?"

    • Exchange distribution lists are best for email to these groups:
      • all employees
      • all faculty
      • all staff, classified, or administrators
      • all students at any campus

How do I find a Mailman list owner at Ohio University?

  •  To contact the owner of a Mailman list on the OHIO server, send an email to listname-owner@listserv.ohio.edu where listname is replaced with the actual name of the list. For example, to contact the owner of the RandomList list, you would send email to randomlist-owner@listserv.ohio.edu. Your message will be automatically forwarded to the list owner.

Owners and Moderators

Quick, how do I stop messages from getting sent out?

  • If you need to quickly stop messages from being sent out to your list due to abuse or a mailing loop, log into the administrative pages for your list at

          http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is the name of your list. Under "General Options" scroll down to the bottom of the page and look for the section titled "Additional settings". The first option under this section should be "emergency". Set this to "Yes" and submit your changes to start emergency moderation.

    When this option is set, all mail sent to the list will be held for moderation. When the problem has been resolved, you can allow your list operation to go back to normal by going back and changing this option back to "No".

Who can own a Mailman list at Ohio University?

  • Mailman lists may be established for current OHIO students, faculty, or staff who need a list to further their work at the University. Staff ownership and use of Mailman lists is subject to the approval of their departments and supervisors.

    All Mailman lists must have at least one owner who is a current OHIO student, faculty, or staff. Additional owners do not have to be affiliated with the University.

How do I establish a Mailman list and learn to be a list owner?

  •  Let's start off getting you the basic information you'll need. There is Mailman Reference site on the Web at http://www.ohio.edu/oit/email/mailman/. It contains information for both list owners and subscribers. If you are a list owner, it would be good to bookmark the owner section at http://www.ohio.edu/oit/email/mailman/owners/ as a reference that should answer many questions.

    One of the links available on the Mailman Web pages will take you to a form where you can request that a Mailman list be established for you.

    Once your list has been created, you can access it via Web pages on the Mailman server. As a list owner, you can configure your list settings, add and delete members, and do other things at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list.

    Your list members will be able to subscribe, unsubscribe, and update their personal subscriber settings at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/listname

    When you run into problems and need assistance, send an email message to mailman@listserv.ohio.edu with a description of the problem and examples when possible.

How do I add or delete subscribers?

  •  You can add and remove subscribers by going to your list's administration pages at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    (where listname is replaced by the name of your list).

    After you have logged in with your OHIO ID and admin password, go to "Membership Management." This should bring you to a page with a list of the subscribers. Every subscriber will have a checkbox at the left, entitled "unsub." If you wish to unsubscribe a few people, you can check the boxes and click on "Submit Your Changes."

    If you have a list of email addresses that you wish to add or remove, you can go to either "Mass Subscription" or "Mass Removal," which are options under "Membership Management."

    For "Mass Subscription" enter the email addresses in the text box provided, one per line. If you would like to include a name associated with each address, you can do so in the following format:

         name <email-address>

    Don't forget to include the brackets around the email address. It is also very important that you include the full email address (in other words, add @ohio.edu to an Ohio University address).
     

    Alternatively, you can provide a plain text file containing the email addresses (and names if preferred). (Note: You MUST use a plain text file; it cannot be a Word or Excel file.) Type the location of the file in the "...or specify a file to upload" box or use the "Browse..." button to locate it on your computer.

     

    For the "Mass Removal" page, just enter the email addresses you want to remove, one per line, or provide a text file. The file should contain email addresses only, one per line, with no names.

    Note: You can find step-by-step instructions for adding and deleting subscribers at

     

         http://www.ohio.edu/oit/email/mailman/owners/

How can I add, delete or change Mailman list owners?

  •  As a Mailman list owner, you can add or delete owners at any time as long as there is at least one owner who is a current faculty, staff, or student at Ohio University.

    To change ownership of your list, go to your list's administration pages at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list. Log in with your OHIO ID and admin password.

    Under "General Options" you will find an owner setting where you can specify the email address(es) of the current list owner(s). Simply add or delete email addresses to add or remove list owners and give them the current password. When you are finished, click on the "Submit Your Changes" button. It is a good idea to then double-check the spelling of the owner addresses.

How do I send an email message to my list?

  •  To send an email message to your list and have it distributed to all of your list members, use your preferred email program to compose a message to listname@listserv.ohio.edu where listname is the name of your list.

    If your message is held for approval or otherwise not distributed to the list members, see the "Why are messages from the list owner moderated?" FAQ for troubleshooting advice.

How do I get rid of a Mailman list that I own at Ohio University?

  •  When you are finished with the use of your list and you would like to have it deleted send an email to mailman@listserv.ohio.edu and ask that your list be deleted. Please explicitly state the name of your list. List deletion requests must be from the list owner.

Can I hide my Mailman list to make it less vulnerable to abuse?

  •  If you would like your Mailman list to not be published on the list of public lists at http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/ you can change your list's privacy settings. To do this, log on to the administration page at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list. Once you have logged in with your OHIO ID and admin password, select the "Privacy Options" link under "Configuration Categories". The first setting asks you if you want to "Advertise this list when people ask what lists are on this machine." Just set this to "No" and click on the "Submit Your Changes" button.

    Note that this does not guarantee that your list will not receive spam, nor will it necessarily reduce the amount of spam your list already receives if spammers already have your list's address. If your list is receiving spam, see the How can I avoid spam on my Mailman list? FAQ.

How can I avoid spam on my Mailman list?

  •  Depending on how your list is used, you have several options for avoiding spam. The first option is to have Mailman automatically discard all messages from non-members. To do this, go to the admin pages for the list at

         https://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the name of your list. Once you have logged on with your OHIO ID and admin password, follow the Configuration Categories links to Privacy Options > Sender filters. Set the "generic nonmember action" setting to Discard and submit your changes.

    Note that you can fine-tune your list to allow some specific domains to post to your list while discarding all other messages. (These domains are based on the From address of the incoming message and you should be aware that this address is often forged by spammers.) For example, if you would like addresses ending in ohio.edu to be able to post to your list regardless of whether or not they are members, while still discarding all other messages from non-members, add the following entry to the "accept these non-members" setting on the Privacy Options > Sender filters page and then submit your changes:

        ^.*ohio\.edu

    Similarly, your list can be configured to only allow members to post without moderation, messages from non-members can be discarded automatically, and messages from non-member ohio.edu addresses can be held for your approval. To do this, put the above entry in the "hold these nonmembers" setting rather than the "accept these nonmembers" setting.

     

    Another option is to discard messages from specific domains. Mailman uses the From address from incoming messages when determining which domain it is from. Please be aware that the From address is often forged. To enter domains in the "discard these nonmembers" setting (in Privacy Options > Sender filters), put them in the following format:

        ^.*domain
        e.g. ^.*msn\.com

     

    If you want to discard messages with specific words in the subject line, use the "header filter rules" setting with the following entry:

        Subject: .*word

    where you replace "word" with the word or phrase you want to match. Again, choose "Discard" as your action and submit your changes.
     

    Before email is sent to your list, it first passes through our world-class anti-spam system. That system stops over 90% of all email to the university.

     

How do I limit postings to specific domains? For example, I only want OHIO addresses to be able to post messages to my list.

  •  You can specify what happens to messages from non-members that come from specific domains. To do this, log on with your OHIO ID and admin password to your list's administration page at

         https://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list.

    Select the "Privacy Options" link in the Configuration Categories at the top of the page. This will expose four subsections of Privacy Options: Subscription rules, Sender filters, Recipient filters and Spam filters. Select the "Sender filters" link.

    To automatically accept non-member posts from a given domain, enter the following text in the "accept these nonmembers" setting:

        ^.*domain$

    where "domain" is replaced with the domain you want to accept. If you want to automatically accept all messages from OHIO addresses, enter this:

     

        ^.*ohio.edu$

     

    You can do similar things with the "hold these nonmembers," "reject these nonmembers" and "discard these nonmembers" settings. For example, if your list receives lots of spam from the xyz.com domain, enter "^.*xyz.com" in the "discard these nonmembers" setting. Messages from any address ending in xyz.com will then be automatically discarded.

    Of course, depending on what you are trying to accomplish, you also need to make sure the "generic nonmember action" setting is set correctly. This setting specifies what happens to messages from non-members that do not fit any of the sender filters.

    Don't forget to click on the "Submit your changes" button at the bottom of the screen when finished.

I want to set up a list where any message that is sent has to be approved before it goes out to everyone. How do I create and manage moderated lists?

  •  Mailman has the ability to hold messages for owner or moderator approval prior to distributing them to list subscribers. Moderation is not a list-wide setting, but rather a per-user setting. This means that you can choose who can send messages directly to the list, and who has to wait for approval. If you prefer to have all messages moderated, there are ways you can easily do this.

    Go to your list's administration pages at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    (where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list) and log in with your OHIO ID and admin password.

    If you decide that you would like members to have their messages moderated by default, go to "Privacy Options" then "Sender Filters". Locate the "default_member_moderation" setting and select "Yes." Then choose the action you want taken on messages sent by members. The "member_moderation_action" setting has three options: Hold, Reject, and Discard. "Hold" will hold the message for approval by the owner/moderator. "Reject" and "Discard" will both prevent the message from reaching the list, but "Reject" will send a notification to the sender, whereas "Discard" will not.

    You can also set moderation for messages from non-member addresses. The "generic_nonmember_action" setting gives you four options: Accept, Hold, Reject, Discard. "Accept" means no moderation (the message will be delivered to the list members without requiring owner approval). "Hold," "Reject," and "Discard" are the same as described above.

    When you have finished making changes on this page, click the button at the bottom that reads "Submit Your Changes".
     

    If your list already has subscribers, you should make sure that they are also set to "mod" status. Go to "Membership Management". Under "Additional Member Tasks," select the button that says "On" to set everyone's moderation bit and then click "Submit Your Changes". This will set all current subscribers to "mod" status.

    If the owners and moderators are also subscribed to the list, you will need to change their moderation status. You can do so on the Membership List under Membership Management. Find each owner's or moderator's email address and uncheck the "mod" box. Click on the "Submit Your Changes" button before moving on to a new screen. If the owners or moderators are not subscribed to the list, follow the links to "Privacy Options" and then "Sender filters" and enter their email addresses in the "accept_these_nonmembers" setting. When finished, submit your changes.

    Congratulations. Your list is now configured so that only owners and moderators can freely post to the list.

How do I create a list where only owners and moderators can post?

  •  In order to do this, you must make sure that subscribers and non-subscribers cannot post. This will leave only the owners and moderators.

    To reject mail from non-subscribers, first go to your list's administration pages at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is the actual name of your list and log in with your OHIO ID and admin password. Click on "Privacy Options," and then at the next page, click on "Sender Filters."

    The "generic_nonmember_action" option will allow you to decide what to do with mail from non-subscribers. "Reject" and "Discard" will both prevent the mail from going to the list, but "Reject" will send a notice to the sender, whereas "Discard" will be silent. Do not submit your changes yet, but do stay on this page.

    You will have to do a little more work to block mail from subscribers. There is no explicit way to do this, but there is a workaround. You can make all the subscribers moderated, then define what to do with mail from moderated subscribers.

    To make all members moderated, go to the top of the "Sender Filters" page. Select "Yes" for the "default_member_moderation" option, so that new members are automatically set to "mod" status. The "member_moderation_action" option will allow you to choose what you do with the mail sent by subscribers. After making your choice, you should click on "Submit Your Changes".

    If your list already has subscribers, you should make sure that they are also set to "mod" status. Go to "Membership Management." Under "Additional Member Tasks," select the button that says "On" to set everyone's moderation bit and then click "Submit Your Changes." This will set all current subscribers to "mod" status.

    If the owners and moderators are also subscribed to the list, you will need to change their moderation status. You can do so on the Membership List under Membership Management. Find each owner's or moderator's email address and uncheck the "mod" box. Click on the "Submit Your Changes" button before moving on to a new screen. If the owners or moderators are not subscribed to the list, follow the links to "Privacy Options" and then "Sender filters" and enter their email addresses in the "accept_these_nonmembers" setting. When finished, submit your changes.

    Congratulations. Your list is now configured so that only owners and moderators can freely post to the list.

How do I limit messages to my list so that only subscribers can post?

  •  Mailman allows you to choose what to do with incoming messages. Go to your list's administration pages at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced by the actual name of your list. Log in with your OHIO ID and admin password.

    Then click on "Privacy Options" and go to "Sender Filters." The second to last option will allow you to decide what to do with mail from non-subscribers. "Reject" and "Discard" will both prevent the mail from going to the list, but "Reject" will send a notice to the sender, whereas "Discard" will be silent.

How can I add, delete, or change Mailman list moderators?

  •  As a Mailman list owner, you can add or delete moderators at any time. To do so, go to your list's administration pages at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list. Log in with your OHIO ID and admin password.

    Under "General Options" you will find a moderator setting where you can specify the email address(es) of the list moderator(s). Simply add or delete email addresses to add or remove list moderators. When you are finished, click on the "Submit Your Changes" button. It is a good idea to then double-check the spelling of the moderator addresses.

Why are messages from the list owner moderated?

  •  Mailman does not automatically recognize messages from the list owner and distribute them without moderation. Instead, Mailman looks to see whether you are subscribed to your list and what the moderation rule is for you as a subscriber or non-subscriber.

    Most often, owners whose messages are being moderated are not subscribed to their own list. To add your email address to the list, log in with your OHIO ID and admin password to

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list. Go to your Membership Management section and then to Mass Subscription. Type in your name and email address in the following format:

        name <email_address>

    Remember that the brackets around your email address are required. When finished, click on the "Submit Your Changes" button. You should then view your Membership List and make sure that the box in the "mod" column is not checked next to your email address. If it is, uncheck it and click on the "Submit Your Changes" button.

    If you do not want to subscribe to your list but you still want to be able to post messages without being moderated, go to the Privacy Options section and click on the Sender Filters link. Find the "accept_these_nonmembers" option and type your email address into the box provided. Then click on the "Submit Your Changes" button.

    Send email to mailman@listserv.ohio.edu if you have any questions.

Why am I getting moderation requests for my unmoderated list?

  •  There are several reasons why Mailman may moderate a particular message even if your list is configured as an unmoderated list. Luckily, each moderation notice will give a reason for why the message was moderated so you don't have to guess. Here are all the reasons, a brief explanation of each, and the settings involved:

    -----

    Reason: Message body is too big

    Explanation: Mailman will compare the size of the incoming message to the size allowed for each list. By default, any message over 40 KB is held for moderation. Any message over 3 MB will be returned to sender as undeliverable.

    Setting: To control the maximum message size allowed for your list, go to General Options and look for the max_message_size setting at the bottom of the page. You can set it to 0 for the maximum allowable size of 3 MB.

    -----

    Reason: Post to moderated list

    Explanation: Individual subscribers can be moderated (rather than having the entire list moderated for everyone). This is the reason that will be given if a moderated member sends a message to the list.

    Setting: An individual's moderation can be turned on and off on the Membership List (under Membership Management). The setting that controls what is done with a message sent by a moderated member is under Privacy Options %gt; Sender filters and is called "member_moderation_action."

    -----

    Reason: Post by non-member to a members-only list

    Explanation: This reason is given whenever a non-member tries to post to a list that is configured to only allow members to post.

    Setting: The "generic_nonmember_action" setting under Privacy Options > Sender filters controls what happens to messages from non-members. It can be set to either accept messages (no moderation), hold for moderation, reject, or discard messages.

    -----

    Reason: Message has implicit destination

    Explanation: By default, Mailman looks for the list's address in the To or Cc fields of incoming messages. If the address is not explicitly given in the To or Cc fields (e.g. if the list has been blind carbon copied or if the list is subscribed to another list to which the message was originally sent), the message will be held for approval.

    Setting: You can configure the list so that the address is not required to be in the To or Cc fields by going to Privacy Options > Recipient filters and setting the "require_explicit_destination" setting to No.

    -----

    Reason: Too many recipients to the message

     

    Explanation: Mailman will examine the number of email addresses listed in the To or Cc fields of incoming messages. By default, Mailman will hold for moderation any message that contains more than 10 addresses in these fields (the list's address is only one address and the number of subscribers on the list does not have an effect on this setting).

    Setting: You can change the default setting for "max_num_recipients" under Privacy Options > Recipient filters. Change this setting to 0 for no limit.

    -----

    Reason: Message has a suspicious header

    Explanation: Your Mailman list can be configured to moderate messages with specific headers (e.g. "Subject: On Vacation"). If a message contains such a header, it will be held for moderation.

    Setting: The "bounce_matching_headers" setting under Privacy Options > Spam filters contains all headers that Mailman is configured to look for. You can add or delete headers from this list.

    -----

    Reason: Posting to a moderated newsgroup

    Explanation: Your Mailman list can be configured to also send copies of messages to an existing newsgroup. You can specify whether or not that newsgroup is moderated in the Mail<->News Gateways section of the admin pages.

    Setting: If the "news_moderation" setting under Mail<->News Gateways is set to Moderated, messages sent to your Mailman list will be held for moderation. Please note that even if the list is not configured to be linked to a newsgroup, the "news_moderation" setting will still affect list moderation.

How do I change the name of my Mailman list?

  •  Mailman list names can't be changed. A new list has to be created and the old one deleted. You'll have to take care of details like transferring the subscribers file and informing anyone who used the old name of the list.
     

    To create a new list, fill out the Mailman list request form at http://www.ohio.edu/oit/email/mailman/owners/request-list.cfm

    Your new list will be created within two business days. When the new list is up and running, request that your old list be deleted by sending email to mailman@listserv.ohio.edu

How do I change where replies to my list are sent?

  •  As a Mailman list owner, you can configure your list so that replies to messages are directed to either the original sender, the entire list, or to a specific email address. The location you choose will depend on the type of list you want to have.

    Replies directed to the original sender will cut down on list traffic. This may be the setting you prefer if you want to have an "announcement" type list.

    Replies directed to the entire list will promote list discussions. This increases the amount of traffic on the list but it allows everybody to see the discussions.

    Replies directed to an explicit address are good for announcement type lists with a parallel discussion type list. If this is the type of list you would like to have, select "Explicit address" and set the "Reply-To:" address setting to the discussion list address.

    All of these settings can be found on the list administration page at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced by the actual name of your list. You will need to log in with your OHIO ID and admin password to access the administration pages. You will find the "Reply-To" settings in the "General Options" section under "Reply-To: header munging".

How do I find out who is subscribed to my list?

  •  To check current list membership, go to your list's administration page at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list. Log in with your OHIO ID and admin password.

    Under the "Configuration Categories" section at the top of the page, select the "Membership Management" link and you will be shown a list of your current subscribers along with their settings. If you have more than 30 subscribers on your list, the membership list will be broken down alphabetically on separate pages.

    You can unsubscribe members on the Membership List page by checking the box in the "unsub" column and clicking on the "Submit Your Changes" button. You can also follow the "Mass Removal" link where you can manually enter the email addresses you wish to remove from the list.

    If you would like to add people to your list, select the "Mass Subscription" link and you will be able to enter the email addresses of those people you wish to subscribe.

How can I request a list of my subscribers via email?

  •  Mailman will send you a list of subscribers via email if your subscribers are not hidden.

     

    To request a list via email, send the following command to listname-request@listserv.ohio.edu (again where listname is replaced with the name of the list):

    who password

    (where password is the moderator password for the list).

    Please note that you may have to change the private_roster setting under the Privacy Options > Subscription Rules section of the admin pages. If the private_roster setting is set to "List members," you must be subscribed to the list for these instructions to work. If you are an owner but not a subscriber, the private_roster setting needs to be set to "List admin only" or "Anyone." (If set to "Anyone," do not include the password in the "who" command.)

How do I tell subscribers what their list password is when they forget it?

  •  As a list owner, there is no way for you to look up a subscriber's password. You can, however, direct them to the list's information page at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list.

    Under the list's Subscribers section, there will be an "Unsubscribe or edit options" button next to which is a space to enter an email address. The subscriber should enter his email address and click on the button. He will then see the option of having his password sent to him via email.

Can I use email commands to interact with the Mailman server?

  •  Mailman has a limited set of commands that it will recognize via email. The majority of Mailman's options are available exclusively by the Web interface.

    Commands should be sent to listname-request@listserv.ohio.edu (where listname is replaced with the name of the list).

    Mailman will recognize the following commands (note that words in "<>" are required and words in "[]" are optional. Do not include the "<>" or "[]" in the actual commands):

        confirm <confirmation-string>
        Confirm an action. The confirmation-string is required and should be supplied within the mailback confirmation notice.

        end
        Stop processing commands. Use this if your mail program automatically adds a signature file.

        help
        Print this help message.

        info
        Get information about this mailing list.

        lists
        See a list of the public mailing lists on this GNU Mailman server.

        password [<oldpassword> <newpassword>] [address=<address>]
        Retrieve or change your password. With no arguments, this returns your current password. With arguments <oldpassword> and <newpassword> you can change your password.

        If you're posting from an address other than your membership address, specify your membership address with `address=<address>' (no brackets around the email address, and no quotes!). Note that in this case the response is always sent to the subscribed address.

        Please note that if you are subscribed with an email address ending in @ohio.edu you should use your UW NetID and password (rather than the password Mailman assigned to you for the list) to gain access to Mailman Web pages.

        set ...
        Set or view your membership options.

        Use `set help' (without the quotes) to get a more detailed list of the options you can change.

        Use `set show' (without the quotes) to view your current option settings.

        subscribe [password] [digest|nodigest] [address=<address>]
        Subscribe to this mailing list. Your password must be given to unsubscribe or change your options, but if you omit the password, one will be generated for you.

        The next argument may be either: `nodigest' or `digest' (no quotes!). If you wish to subscribe an address other than the address you sent this request from, you may specify `address=<address>' (no brackets around the email address, and no quotes!)

        unsubscribe [password] [address=<address>]
        Unsubscribe from the mailing list. If given, your Mailman list password (NOT your UW NetID password!) must match your current password for the list. If omitted, a confirmation email will be sent to the unsubscribing address. If you wish to unsubscribe an address other than the address you sent this request from, you may specify `address=<address>' (no brackets around the email address, and no quotes!)

        who password
        See everyone who is on this mailing list. The roster may be limited to list administrators and moderators only, in which case you must supply the list admin or moderator password to retrieve the roster.

Can Mailman ignore vacation messages?

  •  Mailman currently ignores any message marked with a "Precedence: Bulk" header which some vacation programs add to vacation messages. If the vacation message does not contain such a header, however, you will need to manually configure your Mailman list to moderate (but not ignore) certain messages based on other information such as keywords in the Subject line.

    To do so, log in to your list's admin pages at

         https://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/admin/listname

    where listname is replaced with the actual name of your list.

    Once you are logged in, follow the links to the Privacy Options > Spam filters section. There you will find the "bounce_matching_headers" setting which will already contain some values. Add the following line in the text box:

         Subject: .*keyword

    where "keyword" is replaced with typical vacation subject line text. For example,

         Subject: .*vacation

    will catch all messages with the word "vacation" in the subject line. Another typical subject line for a vacation message is "Out of office" so you could also add

         Subject: .*out of .*office

    Note that the ".*" needs to be included in the text - it tells Mailman that there can be additional text that you have not specified (e.g. "Out of office" as well as "I'm out of the office" will be caught by the spam filter).

    When you are finished adding lines to the filter, click on the "Submit Your Changes" button at the bottom of the screen.

    When a message is received by the list that matches any of the lines specified in the spam filter, Mailman holds the message so it is not distributed to the entire list and sends a moderation notice to the list owner.

Why do posts appear to be from "listname-bounces@listserv.ohio.edu on behalf of" the sender rather than from the sender's actual email address?

  •  When a message is sent to a Mailman list, Mailman adds a Sender header that looks like this:

        Sender: listname-bounces@listserv.ohio.edu [listname-bounces@listserv.ohio.edu] On Behalf Of name of sender

    Some email programs such as MS Outlook read this Sender header rather than the original From header but label it as the From header. Only people using MS Outlook (or other programs that behave in the same way) will see the From line in this way. Most programs will display the correct From line with the original sender's name and address.

Why are my message header and footer appearing as attachments?

  •  The display of the footer depends on the email client being used to view the message and also whether or not there are any attachments on the message. If Mailman receives a message with MIME parts (generally attachments such as Word files but could be an html or rich text formatted message without any attachments), the header and footer will be added as additional MIME parts. How those are displayed, however, will depend on the email client you are using to view them. Here are some examples:

        Unix Pine: header appears as message body (although it is also labeled as a MIME part); body appears as attachment (although it is also displayed as part of the body); the footer appears as attachment (although it is also displayed as part of the body)
        Outlook: message header not displayed or attached; message body is in the body; footer is an attachment.
        Gmail: displays message header, body, and footer all as part of the message body with no indication of any attachments.

    The easiest solution to this problem is to send plain text messages to your list.

Subscribers

How do I subscribe to a Mailman list at Ohio University?

  •  To subscribe to a mailing list on Mailman, you need to use a Web browser to open the list's information page. You can access the directory of public lists at http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/

    Every mail list on the server, both public and private, has its own list information page. The lists included on the above page are only those lists that are public. To access a private list, you will need to know the exact list name. You can type the name in the URL like this:

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/listname

    For example, if you want to access the list information page for the list demo, you would go to

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/demo

    Once you have accessed the list's information page, you should see a section that will allow you to subscribe to the list. Type your email address and select the Subscribe button. If you enter a password it should be only for this mailing list.

    When you fill out the form, you will be given the option of receiving mail from the list in digest format. The digest format will result in you receiving a single message from the list each day with all of the messages bunched together rather than receiving them individually. If you later decide you want to change your digest option, you can do so.

    Once you have filled in the information requested in the "Subscribing" section, click on the "Subscribe" button. If the list has been set up to require owner approval for subscriptions, you will have to wait until the list owner approves your subscription request. Otherwise, Mailman will send an email message to your email address. The message that you receive will ask you to confirm your subscription request. This helps to prevent other people from adding you to a list without your permission. When you receive the confirmation request, simply reply to the message. You do not have to add any additional text and you should not modify the subject line.

    After successfully subscribing to the list, Mailman will probably send you a welcome message (list owners can configure their list so that welcome messages are not sent). The message will include the URL that will direct you to the list's information page, a URL that will direct you to your personal settings page, and your list password. You should keep the welcome message for future referral. You will need the information contained in it if you ever want to modify your personal settings on the list or unsubscribe.

How do I unsubscribe from a Mailman list at Ohio University?

  •  To unsubscribe from a Mailman mailing list at Ohio University, go to the list's information page at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/listname

    where listname is replaced with the list's actual name.

    Under the list's "Subscribers" section you will see an "Unsubscribe or edit options" button next to which you can enter your email address. Enter the email address with which you are subscribed to the list and click on the button. This will take you to the list's "Membership Configuration" page where you can change your membership options, unsubscribe to the list, or request a password reminder. By clicking on the "Unsubscribe" button, a confirmation message will be emailed to you. The message will have a URL that you can go to in order to complete the removal process. (There will also be instructions on how to confirm your unsubscribe request by email.) This confirmation step ensures that you will not be removed from the list by someone other than yourself or the list owner.

How can I find my subscriber password?

  •  To get your password for a Mailman list, go to the list's information page at

         http://listserv.ohio.edu/mailman/listinfo/listname

    where listname is replaced with the list's actual name.

    Under the list's Subscribers section you will see an "Unsubscribe or edit options" button next to which you can enter your email address. Enter the email address with which you are subscribed to the list and click on the button. This will take you to the list's "Membership Configuration" page where you can change your membership options, unsubscribe to the list, or request a password reminder. By clicking on the "Remind" button at the bottom of the page, your list password will be emailed to you.

What are some general guidelines for posting messages to lists?

  •  The following are general guidelines that should be observed when posting messages to a mailing list:

        Meaningful Subject Line
        When sending messages to a mailing list, please make sure that they have a clear and descriptive entry on the "Subject:" line.
        Include a Signature
        Please be sure to sign your full name at the bottom of your posting and include your affiliation(s) and email address. Some subscribers may receive their email messages with the header information stripped away by their local system and therefore cannot know the author of a particular posting.
        Provide Context
        Every posting should begin with a clear introduction to the topic, or offer some kind of reference to the topic or a previous posting. There are often several "threads" of discussion going on simultaneously, which makes unreferenced postings confusing to readers. A popular way of providing context is to quote verbatim from the original message. However, keep the quotations *short* and *relevant.* Quoting whole messages, signatures and all, can be inconsiderate.
        Humor
        Humor is appreciated but please remember that humor in email can easily be misinterpreted. One way to express emotion is to use smiley faces. For example: humorous :) , ironic ;) , or sad :( .
        Censorship
        Some Mailman mailing lists are "unmoderated" lists. This means that what members post goes directly to the other members. In order to keep lists uncensored, it is important that only pertinent messages are posted to the list. Members whose messages do not meet minimum expectations will be notified, and may be excluded permanently from future participation.
        Personal Mail
        Just as it is important to try to share public information with the whole group, private correspondence should remain just that: private. Send personal messages directly to individuals, not by way of the list.
        Quality of Communication
        If you find something posted on the list objectionable, you have every right to voice your objections but you should not do so in public. Please express your complaints directly to the person responsible. If enough complaints are received, it is unlikely that the offender will post those kinds of things again. You can also, of course, simply discard/delete all mail from an offending writer.

        [Please note that this DOES NOT address harassment or illegal activities. Such instances should be reported to OIT Security by sending email to security@ohio.edu]