[Mailman-Users] Lists stop working

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Fri Apr 27 14:39:34 CEST 2007

Rolf E. Sonneveld writes:

 > today I have a similar (or the same?) problem. Running Mailman V2.1.9. 
 > Symptoms in my case: a new member (added with the command line utility 
 > add_members) is subscribed properly, the associated mail address gets a 
 > welcome message (so far so good), but mail to the mailing list arrives 
 > at Mailman, but is not distributed to the new user. I tried adding a 
 > second user, but the same problem.

Have posts ever been delivered to any user?  If not, the most likely
Mailman-related problem is that due to your settings, the posts are
being held.  Have you checked the moderation interface?  More likely
IMO is that Mailman never received the posts because of failure to
start Mailman's qrunners properly, or misconfiguration of the MTA.

 > I have checked a number of things from the FAQ to diagnose the problem 
 > but I see nothing unusual. No traces in the logs directory. And I'm sure 
 > Mailman has accepted the mail for further processing (I can see from the 
 > mail logs).

On the contrary, if Mailman isn't writing to its logs and there's
nothing in the qfiles directories, it seems very likely that Mailman
has never received the messages.

Are there entries in logs/qrunner showing that all qrunners are
working?  Mine says:

    Oct 18 17:14:29 2006 (15648) ArchRunner qrunner started.
    Oct 18 17:14:30 2006 (15649) BounceRunner qrunner started.
    Oct 18 17:14:33 2006 (15650) CommandRunner qrunner started.
    Oct 18 17:14:35 2006 (15653) NewsRunner qrunner started.
    Oct 18 17:14:35 2006 (15655) VirginRunner qrunner started.
    Oct 18 17:14:35 2006 (15651) IncomingRunner qrunner started.
    Oct 18 17:14:35 2006 (15654) OutgoingRunner qrunner started.
    Oct 18 17:14:36 2006 (15656) RetryRunner qrunner started.

Does ps show that they are still running?

Fairly early in message processing, Mailman logs to either logs/post
(showing that the post was accepted) or to logs/vette (indicating that
the post was held or rejected, and why).  When the post is delivered,
there will be an entry in logs/smtp for each batch of deliveries
(usually one per remote host, or one per user if personalization or
VERP is being used).  Are there really no logs at all?  If there are
logs, what do they say?

 > How can I trace these messages in Mailman? I looked in the qfiles/ 
 > subdirectories, but no files there...

Have you checked your MTA's queue?  Based on your statements that
there is nothing in the logs and nothing in the queues, I have to
believe they're never getting to Mailman at all.

 > Is there any logging/debugging  that can be turned on

No; the logs described plus the qfiles contain all the information
that you should need for problems related to the delivery pipeline.

 > Or is there any utility to quickly see what messages are in the
 > Mailman queue for processing?

To see what's there, I just use "ls -R /var/lib/mailman/qfiles" (YMMV
depending on where Mailman is installed).  To examine the qfiles
themselves, use "cd /var/lib/mailman; bin/show_qfiles qfiles/in/*"
(again, the cd directory will vary according to your installation).

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