[Mailman-Users] Upgrade to 2.1.4 failed - user lost - recover via backup unsuccessful - any ideas?

Alex Dupont usenetforum at gmx.net
Mon Jun 7 11:11:55 CEST 2004


sorry for this rather long email, but I made some observations, see

> I guess there is config.pck.last and mailman fallbacks to it knowing
> the backup config.pck is corrupted.

Anticipating that, I had deleted the .last-file, even replaced them
with the backup-file. No difference.

>> Doing "perl dumpdb /var/lib/mailman/lists/LISTNAME/config.pck" prints
>> the following error:
>> "Traceback (most recent[...]):
>>    File "dumpdb", line 134, in ?
>>      msg = main()
>>    File "dumpdb", line 126, in main
>>      m = pickle.load(open(filename))
>> EOFError"

> Hey! perl won't do the job, python do.

Ups. :-) It didn't really change anything, though... (interesting
actually). Still gives me the same error message.

> Hmm, but the traceback says your config.pck is broken. You should
> use 'cat' or 'od' to read what your config.pck really has.

"od" gives me an almost endless list of 9 columns with numbers. The
first column has 7 digits, the rest 6. At the end it sort of runs out.

2021620 063060 063143 060543 061544 063065 031542 033065 052562
2021640 000125 052400 065420 061565 062550 057562 062147 063500"
2021660 074155 062056 000145

"cat" on the other hand gives me an endless list (eventually crashing
my Putty...) of email-addresses, separated by a combination of letters
and numbers (I guess the encrypted passwords?), everything without any
I searched for some of those addresses in the current (short) member
list and, surprise, some addresses were not found! Meaning that this
file in fact contains the list of addresses that should be in the
config.pck (but are not)! I am sort of relieved to see that the
addresses are not entirely lost... Yet I have to manage to extract
them somehow from that file and input them again.

Is there any way to extract the addresses with some sort of script
maybe and output them to a file that can then be used to reimport them
to the unbroken (new) config.pck? I see a problem because of the fact
that the password-sequences are directly connected to the addresses -
that way, it seems to me, it will be impossible to tell the difference
when an address starts and when it ends (and the password begins/ends).
Although, I just noticed that the password seems to always start with
a minor "r" and ends with a capital "U". I don't know if that goes for
every of those passwords.
I don't really know anything about writing scripts etc. so there is no
way that I can write something like that myself. Anybody here who
could and would do that for me?

Since "cat" ultimately crashed my Putty I can't see any obvious
errors. "od" just printed that list, neatly, with no interruptions
that I could see. So I have no idea what the problem is. Also, the
error message that dumpdb gives me doesn't tell _me_ anything. Anyone
any idea what it means? That would probably help narrow down the

You know what? I think I just noticed something! Looking at the
passwords (assuming those are encrypted passwords) I noticed some
characters that reminded me of an error when I try to backup stuff
with RAR. Those characters are such as "ö", "Û", "%", "þ" and so on
(hoping that they will be displayed correctly with everybody). I
have the feeling that they have nothing to do with a legitimate
encoding of plain-text letter-passwords! If this is the problem, then
the list might simply not be able to be read by any import-script, or
whatever is accessing that file, because of those characters. If we
could either replace those characters (if they are in fact
illegitimate, there) or at least get rid of them, maybe dumping the
entire password information (probably = extracting the addresses),
then we probably solved the problem. Hey, guys, I think this is kind
of exiting! :-)

> Sorry, but something is definitely wrong!

No kidding! :-) But we're getting there! I'm positive that we can sort
this out. If we manage to, I would really suggest that this procedure
is documented somewhere so it can maybe save some severe headaches for
other people!


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