[Mailman-Users] Anywhere for novices?

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Tue Nov 30 05:56:45 CET 2004

>>>>> "PeteBell" == PeteBell  <macbantam at ntlworld.com> writes:

    PeteBell> Is there ANYWHERE a novice can get hand-holding
    PeteBell> step-by-step tutorials on all this stuff?

Yes ...

    PeteBell> Python, scripts, configs, mailman, MTAs, what the hell
    PeteBell> does it all mean?

... but they are not indexed under those names, and probably not for
your platform.

What you are looking for is books or tutorials with names like "Unix
for Mac OS X Users" and "Linux Administration for Dummies".  "Yes,
Virginia, Mac OS X is different from Linux."  But at the level you're
interested in the difference is a minor annoyance compared to all the
new stuff you need to know, and there's a lot more Linux stuff for
Unix neophytes than there is Mac OS X stuff with the same target

Any Linux distro has a pile of documents called HOWTOs.  These are
available online somewhere, Google sez www.tldp.org.  There's probably
a Mailman-HOWTO, a Sendmail-HOWTO, a Postfix-HOWTO, a Python-HOWTO,
etc.  You probably won't find anywhere near as much for your platform;
Mac users generally would rather spend money than thought on their
computers.  (An honorable choice, but not one that leads to production
of HOWTOs for other people to follow.)

    PeteBell> Is there ANYWHERE this is in plain English

Well, all the names above are translations from the Japanese titles my
bookstore offers.<wink>  I did try to be idiomatic; there _may_ be
English books by those names!

    PeteBell> - where it isn't written as if to be read by people with
    PeteBell> years of programming experience.  I need: "you do
    PeteBell> this... and then you do that... and this is what should
    PeteBell> happen..." etc!

_That_ probably doesn't exist, period.  This is approximately on the
order of complexity of learning to walk on your hands by moving
exactly one muscle at a time.  Yes, such scripts do exist, and they do
often work ---but when they do, they get packaged and sold as
"solutions" by vendors like Apple, or even bundled with Mailman (ie,
setup.py).  IIRC you've already tried Apple's Mailman, and it didn't
work for you.

Really, go read the Linux docs.  The fact that they're for Linux will
help you remember that you're trying to learn enough "general
background" to troubleshoot your own problems.  If that sounds
unattractive, maybe you should hire somebody else to do it for you.
Alternatively, maybe there's another packaged MLM that's not as good a
fit for your needs as Mailman, but would work out of the box in your

Institute of Policy and Planning Sciences     http://turnbull.sk.tsukuba.ac.jp
University of Tsukuba                    Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
               Ask not how you can "do" free software business;
              ask what your business can "do for" free software.

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