[Mailman-Users] mailman user password

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Sun Aug 2 11:13:34 CEST 2009

tanstaafl at libertytrek.org writes:

 > Is the mailman user supposed to be passwordless?

AFAIK there is no need to log in as the mailman user, so that user
should have no password (in the sense of "disabled", not in the sense
of "zero-length string").

 > When I do this from a non-root account:
 > myuser at myhost ~ $ su - mailman -c '/bin/mailmanctl -s start' >/dev/null 2>&1

[it doesn't work as expected]

 > My problem is I don't know how this works/is supposed to work.

It's not supposed to work.  mailman privileges should only be
accessible by the system administrator, ie, someone who has the root

 > It starts fine if I start it from the command line as root,

That's how you're supposed to do it, if you need to do it.

 > so it has to be something to do with the init script and/or
 > permissions (the password for the mailman account)...

It's not a problem with the password for the mailman user. :-)

The init script itself may be broken.  AFAIK, the init script should
be invoking the set-gid binary called "mailman" or "wrapper".  This
just cleans up the environment, changes the effective user id to
mailman, and execs the command specified.  (There's no good reason for
*any* mailman program to be on anybody's PATH, so yes, just having
/bin/mailmanctl makes your installation nonstandard.)

The best thing to do at this point is to run the check_perms script
provided with mailman.  It usually resides in $prefix/lib/mailman/bin,
but since your installation is non-standard, you may have to search
a bit.

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