[Mailman-Users] Periods in user email addresses rejected

Barry Finkel b19141 at anl.gov
Tue Aug 5 17:28:05 CEST 2008

Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:
| Jay Deiman writes:
|  > I just got mailman up and running with Postfix and everything has been
|  > working perfectly except when someone tries to subscribe to the list
|  > that has a period in the "user" portion of the address.  For example:
|  > fname.lname at domain.org.  It gets rejected as an invalid email
address by
|  > the web interface.
| I've never heard of this before.  Just checking, but are you sure that
| these mailboxes don't have periods in their display names rather than
| (or as well as) their addresses?  That is, although
|     Stephen Turnbull <stephen.turnbull at invalid.com>
| is a valid mailbox according to RFC 2822,
|     Stephen J. Turnbull <stephen.turnbull at invalid.com>
| is not, and must be quoted
|     "Stephen J. Turnbull" <stephen.turnbull at invalid.com>
| (I don't think Mailman checks for this, but given that AFAICT from the
| source, Mailman should not behave the way you describe, it's a guess.)
|  > First, is this a setting somewhere that can be changed?
| No.  I would assume that the design is to allow anything that RFC 2822
| does.  As far as I can tell, what you are seeing is a MMHostileAddress
| as defined in Mailman/Errors.py, and the characters checked for are in
| _badchars and _specials in Mailman/Utils.py.  However, '.' isn't in
| there AFAICS, in a recently updated bzr checkout of 2.1.
| What version of Mailman are you using?

And Jay replied:

>I'm using version 2.1.10 (FreeBSD port) with Postfix 2.4.1 (FreeBSD
>port).  I just tried this again through the web interface (not as an
>admin, but as someone attempting to subscribe) and I got the same
>results. I used the address "jay.deiman at gmail.com" (without quotes) and
>no name in the name field.  Verbatim, I get this response:
>You must supply a valid email address.
>That is it.  I've tested with other email addresses, not containing a
>period, and they all work fine.

I just ran a test on my Mailman 2.1.11 test system (with Postfix),
and I was able, through the web interface, to subscribe

     Barry.Finkel at anl.gov

to one of my test lists.  I did not enter anything in the

     Your name (optional):

box.  I received the confirmation mail at that address, and I went to
the URL in that e-mail to confirm my subscription.  I then had to
approve my subscription, as this test list requires list owner
approval for subscriptions.  Postfix is involved only in sending the
confirmation mail to Barry.Finkel at anl.gov.
Barry S. Finkel
Computing and Information Systems Division
Argonne National Laboratory          Phone:    +1 (630) 252-7277
9700 South Cass Avenue               Facsimile:+1 (630) 252-4601
Building 222, Room D209              Internet: BSFinkel at anl.gov
Argonne, IL   60439-4828             IBMMAIL:  I1004994

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