[Mailman-Users] error log reports miss spelled listname?

Richard Barrett r.barrett at openinfo.co.uk
Fri Aug 8 21:34:12 CEST 2003

On Friday, August 8, 2003, at 06:37  pm, Kirk R. Wythers wrote:

> On Fri, 2003-08-08 at 09:25, Richard Barrett wrote:
>> Does the moved list have a directory called $prefix/list/<listname> 
>> and
>> if it is set for archiving a directory called
>> $prefix/archives/private/<listname> and
> yes
>> $prefix/archives/private/<listname>.mbox?
> yes
>> How/what exactly did you move when you moved this old list to the new
>> MM 2.1.2 installation?
> I untarred the achive, moved it all to $prefix/ and then ran ./fix_url
>> Does this old list show up on the /mailman/listinfo and /mailman/admin
>> URI response pages?
> yes
>> Did you run prefix/bin/check_perms -f after manually moving this old
>> list into the new MM installation area?
> yes... no errors
>> Have you tried running fix_url against this moved list?
> yes... did that when I moved the list in oreder to get the list 
> pointing
> to the right url
>>> The only other odd thing is when I querry 'owner' like this:
>>> /usr/local/mailman/mail/mailman owner
>> I do not know what you are trying to achieve by running this command
>> and what you mean by "querying 'owner'".
>> What you are in fact doing is running the Mailman mail delivery 
>> program
>> wrapper which is intended to be called by the MTA to deliver messages
>> to Mailman. This wrapper checks the egid it is called with is that
>> specified by the --with-mail-gid value from the ./configure during
>> installation. As this condition is not being satisfied when you are
>> running it from the command line you get an error reported to that
>> effect.
> If the gid wheel is a problem, then why do newly created lists work
> fine?
> I tied changing the group with:
> chgrp -v -R -L mailnull /usr/sbin/sendmail
> then restarting sendmail and mailman. But it has no effect. What else
> does the message 'try tweaking your mailserver to run the group 
> mailnull
> mean I should try... obviously I don't know what is meant by the term
> 'tweaking'

Whenever /usr/local/mailman/mail/mailman, which is a compiled C wrapper 
for the mailman delivery script is run, it checks the gid of the 
process in which it is being run. The wrapper is not the least bit 
interested about on which list's  behalf it is being called and 
actually does not look at any list specific stuff.

The wrapper expects that the gid of its process to be that defined to 
./configure by --with-mail-gid when Mailman was installed. This 
information is compiled into the C wrapper when make install is run. If 
it is the correct gid then it does a setgid to the 'mailman' group 
before exec'ing the actual Python delivery script. This is a security 
measure. The message text, having told you what the problem is then 
suggests a possible course of action. But that suggestion is based on 
the assumption that the wrapper is being run by the MTA as intended and 
not by you from the command line.

When you are running /usr/local/mailman/mail/mailman from the command 
line, presumably as root:wheel, then the wrapper refuses to run the 
delivery script, and tells you why and offers a potential course of 
action. This is a fairly solid hint that running the wrapper that way 
is not going to get you very far; this is a complete red herring and 
distracting attention from whatever your real problem is.

Now if this gid error occurs during some deliveries by an MTA to 
Mailman and not during others it suggest that the MTA is not always 
executing delivery scripts with the process gid set to the same value; 
which is pretty strange but that is an MTA configuration or whatever 
problem and not a Mailman problem. If that strangeness is linked to 
which list deliveries are being done on behalf of then that is down to 
how the MTA is handling different lists' mail aliases not to Mailman 
per se.

>>> I get this error:
>>> Group mismatch error.  Mailman expected the mail
>>> wrapper script to be executed as group "mailnull", but
>>> the system's mail server executed the mail script as
>>> group "wheel".  Try tweaking the mail server to run the
>>> script as group "mailnull", or re-run configure,
>>> providing the command line option `--with-mail-gid=wheel'.
>>> It just doesn't make sense that there would be a real gid error if 
>>> the
>>> testlist does all the right stuff (ie subscribes sends mail, accepts
>>> mail
>>> etc...)
>>> Ideas?
> -- Kirk R. Wythers			Department of Forest Resources	
> Tel: 612.625.2261		University of Minnesota
> Fax: 612.625.521		1530 Cleveland Ave. N

Richard Barrett                               http://www.openinfo.co.uk

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