[Mailman-Users] mailman without hosting mail server

John Dennis jdennis at redhat.com
Thu Oct 27 17:02:28 CEST 2005

On Thu, 2005-10-27 at 10:27 -0400, Darich Runyan/OMNI INFOSEC HQ wrote:
> All,
> New to the list and mailman so please go easy.  ;^)  I did check the  
> archives as well as did some extensive searching online and was  
> unable to find an answer to my question.  My company's email is  
> hosted by an email provider.  This has not been a bad arrangement;  
> however, now we would like to provide some email lists.  Is it  
> possible to host mailman and lists without hosting our own mail?  If  
> it is possible would any of you please point me to some documentation  
> or possibly point me in the right direction?

The general answer is no. The standard mailman deployment requires
access at the root (e.g. admin) level to the mail transport agent (MTA)
and the web server. There are various schemes whereby one can decouple
these components and some folks have tried this, I cannot comment on
their success or satisfaction. But there are two things to be aware of
here. 1) Setting up a decoupling strategy requires a moderately
sophisticated knowledge of how the various components work, if you have
that level of expertise you probably could be doing your own hosting
instead of relying on an external hosting vendor. 2) Many hosting
vendors provide mailman mailing lists as part of their hosting package.
If your company prefers to use a hosting vendor, and there are many fine
reasons for that decision, then perhaps the path of least resistance and
greatest success to select a hosting vendor that provides mailman
support in addition to the other services your company needs.

FWIW, I've had good luck with www.dreamhost.com, they offer many
excellent features on their accounts for a very reasonable fee. I'm not
affiliated with the company at all. Although I'm more than qualified to
provide my own hosting for my personal computing endeavors I believe the
approximate $10/month for what I get is not worth the headache of DIY
(Do It Yourself), YMMV. A little bit of searching will yield a number of
other hosting companies with mailman support.

One caveat, if you do go with the hosted solution you won't be able to
perform some of the fine grained administration tasks you'll see
discussed here (using the command line utilities) because that requires
root level access to the server. In practice I tend to believe that is
not a huge issue, but you should be aware it is a limitation.
John Dennis <jdennis at redhat.com>

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