[Mailman-Users] Umbrella/Parent Lists

Greg Harris gharris at mail.nixa.k12.mo.us
Fri May 9 17:17:43 CEST 2003

Thanks for the replies.  It looks as though reg ex is not considered the
best way to access memberships yet.  However, since a database is used
for list memberships, it would seem to be the best long-term solution,
if it can be developed.  I also wonder if I made it clear that I was
trying to add all members of a child list and not specific members from
a child list.  Each child list would be set up in such a way that they
all had write access to the parent list or all of them could only read
from the parent list, (an announcement list).  Does this change anyone's
thinking, or are scripts still the best way to go?  

Also, I would like to see your scripts Wesley, if possible.  It sounds
like there is a great deal of potential available from your scripts.  I
wonder if you could add a line or two to the add user script that would
run the appropriate parent list rebuild.  This script would then of
course call any other scripts that it needed to update.  You would, of
course have to use a standard naming scheme, so that it could use a
variable from the add user script.  This should allow for "instant"
updates across the board.  I use instant loosely here, simply because
you have to wait until the scripts finish running.


Greg Harris

On Thu, 2003-05-08 at 14:51, Wesley T. Perdue wrote:
> Greg,
> I've recently implemented Mailman 2.1.2 for my office.  I'm completely
happy with Mailman, with one exception: I'm surprised at the lack of
support of nested lists.
> I too came across Jon Carnes' workaround shell script (thanks, Jon!);
it didn't meet my needs as-is, but inspired me to write a more elaborate
Perl script that comes closer.  I needed a solution that provided an
arbitrary depth of list nesting; my Perl script supports that.  It uses
rules written in text files (one file per parent list, which includes
the component list names) to automatically build the parent lists from
their component lists.
> For example, eng is the list of all engineers at my company; it is
composed of three lists: the hardware engineers, the software engineers,
and others that must monitor the eng list.  The hardware engineer list
is itself composed of three different lists.
> My script lacks one feature I need: I'd like it to be driven by
membership changes in the child lists, rather than cron-driven.  That
is, when someone joins or leaves my software list, I'd like my eng list
to be automatically updated.  I'm not a Python programmer (I'm barely a
Perl programmer), so it may take me a while to figure out how to
implement this feature.  Arbitrarily rebuilding all parent lists on a
frequent basis is a waste of resources on my already busy server; plus,
it introduces a time delay in the parent-list-updating.
> My script does not address your need for posting rules based on list
membership; that seems to be a more involved change to Mailman's
behavior, which will probably need to be written in Python.
> I have more basic posting rules needs; in general, I allow all list
members to post to the list, and then use the regular expression rules
to also allow posting from within our site, while denying posting from
anyone off-site.
> If your lists are low-traffic or you have staff that can act as list
moderator(s), a combination of regular expression rules and manually
moderating the lists may be a useful way to restrict posts.  For
example, you could allow initially moderated posts for list members,
moderate posts from non-list but site members, and discard posts from
non-site members.
> I hope you find this helpful.
> Regards,
> Wes
> ----------
> Wes Perdue
> IT Manager, Greenfield Networks
> At 09:07 AM 5/7/2003 -0500, 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
> >programming and this is the first time I have set up a mailing list,
> >please be forgiving.
> >
> >I am mainly looking at how to allow all users from certain other
> >lists, to post to a higher list.  Let me try to quickly explain.  I
> >in a public school system, so I will use that example.  The High
> >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
> >post to the Principals list.  However, HS-Principals would also be
> >of HS-Staff.  HS-Staff would be an umbrella for the list English,
> >Science, etc.  Only HS-Principals would be allowed to send to
> >Hopefully by now, you can see that this is just using the
> >structure for a creation of Umbrella/Parent lists that would
> >the entire district.  Essentially, I want to put each user in only
> >list, and then use those lists to determine who can write to what
> >
> >Although the initial setup will be huge, the long term management
> >be much easier than trying to add each person to all the lists that
> >would be a part of.
> >
> >Rather than using scripts and cron jobs to build lists, it would seem
> >be a better use of resources to use regular expressions in the
> >accept_these_nonmembers.  Unfortunately, I do not have the experience
> >write these expressions.  Has anyone else tried this?  Am I
> >off my rocker and about to watch it burn?
> >
> >Thanks,
> >
> >Greg Harris

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