[Mailman-Users] Mailman won't work - can you help?

Simon White simon at caperet.com
Mon Nov 3 09:42:54 CET 2003

02-Nov-03 at 14:06, Doug Griswold (griswld at cio.sc.gov) wrote :
> Your apache server is executing the cgi as root.  

I'm not sure there is full evidence for this, the message which implied
it was running as root was from a command line test, not from Apache. I
can't believe a large distro like Mandrake would let Apache run as root
(unless, of course, it's been hand compiled and _specifically_
configured to do so).

> You have run ./configure --with-cgi-gid=apache but it needs to be
> ./cofigure --with-cgi-gid=root.  But this is a bad idea better to
> change how your webserver is running.  It probably should be executing
> the cgi as group is apache in httpd.conf there should be an entry si
> iliar to this.
> User apache
> Group apache

Never let anything run as root if you can avoid it. To find out what
Apache is running as, do:

$ ps -aux | grep httpd

my results:

root     19848  0.0  0.2  4624   72 ?        S    Sep26   0:00 /var/apache/bin/httpd
nobody   19849  0.0  0.9 13616  276 ?        S    Sep26  19:37 [httpd]
[... several more lines like the second one ...]

Always one master process as root, but that one only serves as a
listener to spawn children running as nobody... because you have to be
root to listen to ports < 1024 in most circumstances.

Here in the example my Apache server runs as nobody. The username for
your Apache may be different. As Doug said, it will be in the httpd.conf
file somewhere.

Find out which user your Apache server is running as for sure, then
recompile Mailman passing --with-cgi-gid=<userid which runs your apache>
to configure.

There may be other permissions issues, but this issue needs to be
checked before others. As you said you've reinstalled several times,
there could be junk lying around messing up an otherwise correct config
that you've thought was wrong...

Simon White. Internet Consultant, Linux/Windows Server Administration.
email, dns and web servers; php javascript perl asp; MySQL MSSQL Access
     Bridging the gap between management, HR and the tech team.

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