[Mailman-Users] special characters in name and address

Richard Barrett R.Barrett at ftel.co.uk
Tue Jan 8 17:33:08 CET 2002

At 09:56 08/01/2002 -0600, Matthew Shames wrote:
>Hey folks,
>I hope you don't mind another question from a Mailman "newbie". I am 
>another of the Mac enthusiasts who have moved over to OS X in the past 
>couple of years, and am enjoying expanding my knowledge to include some 
>UNIX basics.
>I've noticed a strange problem whereby Mailman appears to munge the "From" 
>address when it contains both a name and an address, and the name contains 
>a period. The setup: Mailman 2.0.7 on OS X 10.1.2, with Postfix 
>(20010228-pl08) as the MTA. The list in question is called "test", and 
>restricts postings to subscribed users. If I send a message, and the 
>"From" header is set to:
>Matthew E. Shames <macdaddy at bluesmobile.com>
>Mailman rejects it because it states that it is being sent from 
>matthewe.shames at bluesmobile.com. Additionally, it tries to send a bounce 
>message to matthewe.shames at bluesmobile.com, which is not a valid address, 
>so the postmaster (also me) gets notified.
>Now, if I set the "From" header to:
>Matthew Shames <macdaddy at bluesmobile.com>
>the message goes through without any incident. Additionally, if I set 
>member_posting_only to false, messages from either scenario make it 
>through without incident.

This is not a Mailman issue but a failure to conform to RFC822 issue. The 
'.' character is a special character in a mail header field while 
'Matthew', 'E' and 'Shames' are atoms. Because of the special character you 
need to quote the string. You should be saying:

     "Matthew E. Shames" <macdaddy at bluesmobile.com>

The missing quotes are leading to a parsed result which is at variance with 
your desires.

The other form you used:

Matthew Shames <macdaddy at bluesmobile.com>

is OK because 'Matthew' and 'Shames' are both atoms and hence the string 
does not require quoting.

If you are really sad, mad or bad see http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc822.html

>I'm not completely sure if this is a postfix issue, or a mailman issue, or 
>something else. However, I don't seem to have this issue when sending 
>non-list mail through postfix.
>I hope this makes sense--I'd be happy to explain further. If anyone has 
>any insights, I'd be most grateful.
>Mailman-Users maillist  -  Mailman-Users at python.org

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