[Mailman-Users] Bounce message confusion

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Fri Nov 18 06:30:40 CET 2005

>>>>> "Robin" == Robin Rowe <rower at movieeditor.com> writes:

    Robin> There's nothing wrong with the subscribers email
    Robin> address. How do I tell mailman that our addresses is ok

You don't.  The MTA (mail transfer agent, the program that actually
sends the mail over the Internet) at your ISP is telling Mailman that
it didn't deliver to those addresses, which is an error condition.
Telling software to ignore errors is never a long-term solution, and
if your inadvertant attempts to exceed your contractual limit
continue, you could get booted by your ISP or labelled a spammer or
other unpleasant things.

    Robin> and stop it from annoying subscribers with spurious bounce
    Robin> warnings?

You fix the real problem.  Unless you do that, subscribers will lose
service at some point.

    Robin> Why is mailman doing this?

Because mail is bouncing back to it from those addresses.  It's quite
likely that you are correct about the ISP throttling being the cause.
However, the bounces are real.

Mailman itself does not even try to deal with external throttling,
because it cannot know how to measure the rate, and it is not easy to
distinguish between throttling and truly undeliverable addresses.
Physical limitations and policy vary widely across ISPs.  See

In fact, the relevant feature (queueing the mail for later delivery
when the service is available) is already built into the MTA.  Your
ISP has basically put a policy in place that says "you can't use this
feature; just behave yourself and everything will work."  It's not a
mailing list manager's purpose to help you work around those
restrictions.  You really need to get in touch with your ISP's support

School of Systems and Information Engineering 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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