[Mailman-Users] bin/upgrade has been broken since 2.1.5 (orpossibly longer)

Knut Auvor Grythe knut at auvor.no
Fri Sep 19 09:50:47 CEST 2008

On Thu, Sep 18, 2008 at 09:28:32PM -0700, Mark Sapiro wrote:
> I don't see the need to apply the part of the patch that recovers from
> the incorect migration. Anyone who migrates with outstanding
> subscription approval or held message requests from pre 2.1a4 to
> Mailman through 2.1.11 will encounter the problem and will presumably
> deal with it somehow before migrating to a still later version.

Well, I didn't. We have a list server with more than 4000 lists on it.
This is a student system, and students typically disappear after about 5
years. Sadly, we do not yet have a clean way to tell of lists are dead
or not (they are often inherited by later students), and thus we have to
keep them all. 

About a year ago I upgraded from a lecacy system with mailman
2.0.something (possibly 2.0.9) to Ubuntu Dapper, thus getting Mailman
2.1.5. This broke all lists with outstanding subscription requests
(there were about 10 or 15 of these lists). But apparently nobody used
these lists any more, and thus nobody reported that the admin requests
page was broken. 

This week, when attempting to upgrade further to Ubuntu Hardy, with
Mailman 2.1.9, the upgrade script crashed as soon as it reached one of
these lists, without releasing the lock. The attached patch is what I
used to be able to upgrade cleanly from the previously corrupted data.

Now, I could probably have recovered in some other way, but that's
because I know python. Not all mailman users do, and I suspect they
would have severe difficulties recovering from such a situation. Also,
even if they actually did notice this problem before the upgrade, how
would they solve it? If I was them I'd probably try to upgrade to the
latest version to see if the crashing stops, only to see that the
upgrade also crashes.

Knut Auvor

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