[Mailman-Users] Umbrella/Parent Lists

Richard Barrett r.barrett at openinfo.co.uk
Thu May 8 20:46:33 CEST 2003

At 15:07 07/05/2003, Greg Harris wrote:
>After looking through the many articles on this topic, I am still not
>seeing a truly dynamic fix.  First, I am not very familiar with python
>programming and this is the first time I have set up a mailing list, so
>please be forgiving.
>I am mainly looking at how to allow all users from certain other local
>lists, to post to a higher list.  Let me try to quickly explain.  I work
>in a public school system, so I will use that example.  The High School
>Principal would be in a list which would only include himself and the
>Assistant Principals, HS-Principals.  That list would be covered by a
>Principals list.  The Principals list would be a compilation of the
>different building principal lists and all principals would be able to
>post to the Principals list.  However, HS-Principals would also be part
>of HS-Staff.  HS-Staff would be an umbrella for the list English,
>Science, etc.  Only HS-Principals would be allowed to send to HS-Staff.
>Hopefully by now, you can see that this is just using the organizational
>structure for a creation of Umbrella/Parent lists that would encompass
>the entire district.  Essentially, I want to put each user in only one
>list, and then use those lists to determine who can write to what lists.
>Although the initial setup will be huge, the long term management will
>be much easier than trying to add each person to all the lists that they
>would be a part of.
>Rather than using scripts and cron jobs to build lists, it would seem to
>be a better use of resources to use regular expressions in the
>accept_these_nonmembers.  Unfortunately, I do not have the experience to
>write these expressions.  Has anyone else tried this?  Am I completely
>off my rocker and about to watch it burn?

I've got plenty of experience with regexes but I am inclined to think you 
are trying to push rope up a hill with the regex approach to your problem.

The only way regexes will help solve your problem is if there is a clear 
pattern in the email addresses of the sublist members which can be encoded 
in a regex which restricts access to the umbrella list.

So if the email aliases of your members contained an indication of the job 
grade/teaching specialty/other criterion of the individuals you would be in 
with a shout but otherwise I think you will find some simple scripts to 
generate revised membership lists and cron jobs to run them will be a more 
productive approach.

The other alternative is the more radical one of developing a membership 
adaptor in association with a database containing the details of the users, 
which would allow dynamic membership lists to be obtained by MM with non_MM 
criteria (like job grade/teaching specialty) appropriate to the list being 
used when extracting from the database. Not tried it myself, so that 
alternative is just speculation.

I think that scripts and cron jobs will be a whole lot easier in the short run.

Best of luck.

>Greg Harris

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