[Mailman-Users] Running Mailman, webs server and mail transport on separate servers.

Greg Stein gstein at lyra.org
Sun Jan 31 05:46:50 CET 1999

[was out of town last week; sorry for the delay]

John Morton wrote:
> Greg Stein writes:
>  > List is: pycom-dev
>  > Host name: pythonpros.com
>  > URL: http://mailman.pythonpros.com/mailman/
>  >
>  > People send to pycom-dev at pythonpros.com. That mail is handled on the
>  > mail exchanger box. Visiting www.pythonpros.com brings you to a
>  > Linux-based web server. Mailman runs on mailman.pythonpros.com which is
>  > on the third Linux box.
> So under these circumstances, you don't need to have a wrapper script
> that ssh's to the mailman machine and runs the CGI? That's what I'd
> like to do, but I'm have problems setting up the PATH_INFO variable
> via ssh on the mailman machine.

Here are my machines:

ns1.lyra.org : primary mail server, primary DNS
cartman.lyra.org : Mailman machine, with a mail server and web server
www.pythonpros.com : general web server

mailman.pythonpros.com is a CNAME for cartman.

On ns1, I have pycom-dev at pythonpros.com forwarded to
pycom-dev at cartman.lyra.org.  cartman's /etc/aliases forwards that to
Mailman where it gets processed. cartman performs all outbound
deliveries of the mail lists under the "pythonpros.com" domain name.
cartman also handles mailman web requests under the
mailman.pythonpros.com virtual host.

www.pythonpros.com goes to the general web server.

No SSH or funny CGI or anything is involved.

>  > The NT box is a colocated box which runs some other domains' web sites.
>  > Their mail and mailing lists are handled by the appropriate linux box.
> So mailing list mail is forwarded the mailman box, and the MTA on that
> machine calls the mail wrapper, etc?

The NT box merely hosts web pages. The domains' MX records point to ns1.
If the domain is hosting a mailing list, then the inbound mail is
forwarded (by ns1) to cartman for Mailman processing.

The NT box can link people to mailman.example.com on cartman, or the NT
machine can actually contain the subscription form and simply post it to

>  > Yah, seems like overkill on the number of machines, but then again:
>  > they're mostly 486's with small memory; and I don't want to run a beta
>  > Mailman on the mail exchanger (which is also primary DNS) since I've
>  > seen earlier Mailman versions bumble the box.
> That seems sensible. We've got web servers set up like that, but I'm
> running mailman-1.0b8 on the mail server machine.

I took it off my primary mail machine. I found that 1.0b6 could throw my
machine into a mail loop and chew up the CPU. At one point, the mail
machine was refusing all incoming mail and was not even serving DNS
properly. Since it is a critical piece of the network, I removed Mailman
to a dedicated box.

This actually works out well. Inbound mail (relatively light) goes thru
ns1. The heavy mail distribution and queueing and Mailman CGI processing
occurs on a dedicated machine.


Greg Stein, http://www.lyra.org/

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