[Mailman-Users] Bounce message confusion

Mark Sapiro msapiro at value.net
Sat Nov 19 01:23:07 CET 2005

Robin Rowe wrote:
>Dumb question, but I want to make sure I understand: if I turn off 
>bounce processing what happens when there's a bounce?

The bounce email is discarded and no action is taken.

>My current settings, I have "The maximum member bounce score before the 
>member's subscription is disabled" set to 5.0, "The number of days after 
>which a member's bounce information is discarded, if no new bounces have 
>been received in the interim" at 7, "How many Your Membership Is 
>Disabled warnings a disabled member should get before their address is 
>removed from the mailing list" at 3, and "The number of days between 
>sending the Your Membership Is Disabled warnings" at 7. I have the three 
>bounce-notifications-to-me settings turned on.
>I interpret these setting to mean that it will be at least 5 days before 
>a subscriber email address could be disabled and 3 more days until 
>automatic removal.

Not quite. It will be three more weeks until automatic removal.

>However, I've had a subscriber report that after 
>rejoining my list he was unsubscribed again the very next day due to 
>bouncing. Is that possible?

Did you receive a bounce action notification for the second unsubscribe?

If this happened, it's a bug. Is it possible the user received an old
notice from the prior sub and wasn't really unsubscribed this time?
When a member is removed/unsubscribed from a list, all bounce
information for that address is deleted. A new member has no bounce
information until the first bounce is received.

Of course, in the unlikely event that your provider uses a custom
MemberAdaptor, all bets are off as it may not be implemented correctly.

>The mailman description for bounce processing (enclosed below) says, 
>"You can control both the number of reminders the member will receive 
>and the frequency with which these reminders are sent." It isn't clear 
>to me how to control that from the settings offered. At what point do 
>warning messages get sent and how often do subscribers receive bounce 
>messages? How do I change the frequency and text of bounce warning 

Members are disabled due to bouncing and receive the first warning when
the score reaches threshold (and if your provider has set VERP_PROBES
= Yes, after a probe bounces). They will receive a total of
bounce_you_are_disabled_warnings warning messages including the first
at intervals of bounce_you_are_disabled_warnings_interval days. then
after another bounce_you_are_disabled_warnings_interval days, they
will be unsubscribed.

At any time during this process, they can visit their options page and
re-enable delivery, and everything starts over with a score of 0.

>My subscribers complain that they don't like to receive bounce messages. 
>Can I stop their bounce warning messages but still keep getting bounce 
>notifications sent to me? How?

No. You can't.

If you train them to go to their options page and re-enable delivery
when they get the first notice, they won't get more until they're
disabled again.

The real issue is that Mailman sends to the same list in the same order
each time, so if the host's MTA bounces all but the first 500 recips,
those at the end of the list will never get mail and will always be
bouncing. This is what needs to be fixed with the host.

If you can't convince them to remove the limit, and you are unwilling
to move, you may be able to convince them to set VERP_PROBES = Yes.
Since the probes are sent to one user at a time, they may not bounce
in which case, the user won't be disabled. Of course, they probably
are not receiving list mail anyway.

>It says, "You should tune both of these to the frequency and traffic 
>volume of your list." For a one-way list of 500 subscribers who get a 
>few announcements a week, how would I estimate what the right settings 
>should be?

Number of subscribers doesn't matter. The controlling variables are
frequency of posting and how 'tight' you want to be. But yours is a
pathological situation, so you probably can't improve it by tuning.

Mark Sapiro <msapiro at value.net>       The highway is for gamblers,
San Francisco Bay Area, California    better use your sense - B. Dylan

More information about the Mailman-Users mailing list