[Mailman-Users] big lists, big messages

Chuq Von Rospach chuqui at plaidworks.com
Sun May 13 09:41:16 CEST 2001

On 5/13/01 12:22 AM, "Tib" <tib at tigerknight.org> wrote:

> Who has email that does not have web access at the time they get their email?

Not a huge number, but not zero. As wireless mobile becomes more
significant, it'll be a growing issue, not a shrinking one.

> True: users who have a bland interest in the article that is being
> posted will probably not pull down the URL - what's the problem with this,
> it's
> saved bandwidth

If the piece of email is sponsored and has advertising, it's a HUGE problem.
As was the original poster's note on this stuff.

> However it's now pulling on a webserver rather than
> pushing through an email server, which depending on it's configuration may
> have
> as few as one outward connection at a time (which I'm not sure how rare /that/
> is, my original sendmail server only had 1 outbound, but my current qmail
> setup
> allows up to 50 outward smtp connections at once), and a webserver is designed
> to be pulled on a lot. Most basic configurations will start anywhere from 10
> to
> 20 instances at once, and the 'high bandwidth' demand won't be high at all if
> you keep the presentation simple and clean and non-graphicy - just you like
> you'd get in a 30k message that got pushed out to you. Plus, if you really
> want
> to get finicky, the manner of processing http requests churns out fewer
> headers
> and data than mail.

Um, Tib -- I've actually done this and measured it. Have you? You ignored
pretty much all of the data in my message while responding to JC -- and you
still sound like you're guessing at this stuff. Have you actually run
servers in both configurations and measured response like I have? Because my
numbers say you're wrong.

> The load of an entire batch (rough 300meg
> estimate) will also be spread out more over the course of a few days as
> everyone checks their mail and may or may not look at that message and cause
> it
> to draw on the url or click/paste it into a browser themselves.

No, it won't. There's a huge peak in the few hours after delivery, which
drops radically after that and stretches out over about ten days or so.

> It all boils down to a matter of how you want to use your server.

And whether you want to pay for peak load capacities on your web server or
the lower, spread out push capacities on your e-mail.

Again, I have to ask. Have you actually done this with large lists? I'm
curious if your numbers disagree with mine, or if you don't have numbers to
back up what you're saying. I'd like to know if the data I've gathered may
or may not be typical. If you've done it, what size lists?

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