[Mailman-Users] Changing mailing list URLs

Eli Barzilay eli at barzilay.org
Thu Jun 3 23:44:31 CEST 2010

On Jun  3, Mark Sapiro wrote:
> Eli Barzilay wrote:
> >Is there a way to change mailing list URLs from
> >  ...something.../<verb>/<list>
> >to
> >  ...something.../<list>/<verb>
> >?
> [...]
> If you could figure out a way within Apache to redirect URLs of the form
>   ...something.../<list>/<verb>
> to
>   ...something.../<verb>/<list>
> without then turning around and redirecting the second back to the
> first in an endless loop,

That's easy:

  ScriptAliasMatch "^/([a-z-]+/)([a-z]+)(/?.*)$" \

Or replace that "[a-z]+" with "admin|admindb|confirm|...".

> it would still only partially work because posting of forms would
> not work because the form data would get lost in the redirect.
> Perhaps this is what you meant by "in addition it seems that it
> messes up the authentication somehow"

I *think* that the main thing that gets lost in the process is mailman
making its own assumptions about the shape of the URLs: that it
basically gives me a cookie that is valid for for
http://<server>/admindb/<list> so when I refresh the page at the
different URL, it asks me again to authenticate since I don't have the
cookie.  This is, of course, related to the fact that generated pages
still have the wrong URLs on them.  If there was some single function
somewhere that constructs these URLs I think that I could make it work
-- but I don't want to risk changes for code that I have no clue

> So I don't think that there is a way to do this without making
> significant modifications to Mailman and having a CGI wrapper per
> list instead of the current 11 wrappers corresponding to the 11
> possible "verbs".

(Specifically, it definitely won't require that.)


BTW, it just happens (really by accident) that someone pointed me at
http://www.w3.org/Provider/Style/URI today -- it's a good summary of
what bugs me with the default mailman url scheme: "pipermail" is
related to the implementation of the archiver, and the <verb>/<list>
thing is something that after 5 years of moderating about 10 lists I
still can't remember.  It's especially bad with links like:


where the verb is on one side of the list name, and the arguments are
on the other side.  It seems much better to me to think about the
interfaces as being part of the list.  It would even work better with
URL completion...


          ((lambda (x) (x x)) (lambda (x) (x x)))          Eli Barzilay:
                    http://barzilay.org/                   Maze is Life!

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