[Mailman-Users] transferring a list

Patrick Lesslie patricklesslie at iinet.net.au
Wed Feb 25 14:58:32 CET 2004

On Wed, Feb 25, 2004 at 01:03:54AM -0600, Ricky Cain wrote:
> Can and how would I go about transferring an active list from one host
> server to another? Can anybody point me in a general direction for a how
> to?

I'm sure this is well documented already, but it's usually fairly easy
to transfer lists to mailman.  This is roughly what I would do.

I'm sure this is full of mistakes.  Also, some of these commands are 

The most important thing about a list is it's members, so a
primitive way to move a list is to simply create a list, subscribe
the member list from a flat file and announce.

You can also duplicate configuration, mess with DNS records, and
transfer archives.

To get the members from the old list:
 list_members -p -o listname_members listname

To get the config from the old list:
 config_list -o listname_config listname

Get stuff to the other host:
 scp listname_config some_other_host:somedir
 scp listname_members some_other_host:somedir

To create the list:
 newlist listname

To configure the list:
 config_list -i listname_config listname 

Make sure the aliases are right.  You may have to paste them across.
It's easy to forget the aliases.

If you've made changes to apache, you might wish to make them work
on the new host too.

You may also require a DNS change.

Meanwhile you can subscribe the members:
 sync_members -some-args -f listname_members listname

See the help for sync_members and decide if you want to send welcome
messages etc.  Welcome messages announce the new list, and then you
can announce the close of the old one, on the old one (and the new).
sync_members will not hesitate to remove members not on the list,
so run it with --no-change first as a habit.

To improve this you could also coordinate an rsync -auv 
(or tar and scp) of the list archives: 
/var/lib/mailman/archives/public/listname.mbox (if this link exists)

If so, regenerate all the html archives on the new host from the mbox:
 mmarch listname [ mbox ]
You can use any mbox, or it will look in that directory.

You can also move lists by just copying all the relevant directories,
but that is version dependent.

You might have to think about the order of events and timing, or even
take other measures if you have a really busy list.

Also, at the very least have a backup of /var/lib/mailman ...

Patrick Lesslie

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