Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (1786 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] Email dist lists - advice
John said the following on 11/15/2011 08:58 PM:

Is there any simple way with the current versions we are using to setup
distribution
lists? Or could list members suggest an alternative mail client that does a
better job
with distribution lists.

I run the members list for a local volunteer organization.
I don't think that using a mailer - mail-user-agent - on a PC is the
best way to do this.

This mailing list is run using mailing list software.
Its one of many, and one of many ways of doing lists.

You could set up a group on Yahoogoups or the Google equivalent.
Those don't have to be in the public index.

What I have done is set up an account on Dreamhost.
That gives me a domain for the organization as well as a ssh acount and
a ginourmouse amount of space and lots of web based tools. Go look for
yourself.

Dreamhost supply a number of mailing list tools.
We use one that is like this list for the board members and a
"distribution only" to send to the members.

I also have in that space a script that uses metasend to let me send out
more complex notices that need attachments.

All this is managed from plain text lists.

Why do I do this?

My ISP has anti-spam measures. These include throttling.
If I were to try and send out a message (never mind attachments!) to the
member list then my ISP would stomp on me pretty quickly since this
looks like suspicious activity. And never mind that I have high-speed
cable!

Lets face it, unless you are writing long messages or have attachments
or *Shock* *Horror* being so crude as to send HTML mail when plain text
will do (another suspicious activity since HTML mail is the province of
newbies, spammers and users of Microsoft and consumes disk space to no
added benefit) then the mail header is going to be longer than the
message body. You don't believe me? Go look. Count the bytes.

So for the bulk of the messages on the list I deal with there is over
100% "SMTP Overhead Bloat". Its not about bandwidth per-se. But it
does attract the attention of the automated anti-spam mechanisms.

I don't need that, certainly not on my personal account.

But Dreamhost not only has lots of bandwidth, its an ISP and has this
mailing list software set up properly. No hassle and of course there is
the web-based control interfaces.

I mention Dreamhost because I'm happy with them; they give me good
service and have been friendly and helpful. I'm sure there are many
other ISPs that offer similar service.

But my point is that you are better off NOT using your home machine and
a personal mail user agent like T'Bird or KMail if you are dealing with
a proper list.

Do I use lists in T'Bird on my personal machine?
Yes I do, but non have more than half a dozen people and even those
don't get used more than once or twice a week.

At the "business" level, I expect lists to be maintained by the IT/HR
department: @AllStaff @ITStaff, @DepartmentName and so on, and
implemented on the mail server, whatever technology that is (probably
MS-Exchange in many places).

At a push, you could implement MailMan, MMMLJ, LISTSERV or similar list
technology that is used by the ISPs (or is behind this list).

Its about "Appropriate Technology".
A personal MUA has so many features concerned with reading and filtering
and tagging mail that are completely irrelevant to sending mail to a list.

In the limiting case you could manage the list with a simple shell script

cat $ADDRESSLIST | while read adr
do
mail -s "Message to list" < $MESSAGEFILE
done

Where the addresses are one per line in the file $ADDRESSLIST
and the message text body is in the file $MESSAGEFILE

That's really lightweight!

--
Capitalism without bankruptcy is like Christianity without hell.
-- Frank Borman, U.S. Astronaut
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