[Mailman-Users] Debugging mass invitations using web page interface...

The Mailing List Server Admin List.Server.Admin at unh.edu
Fri Aug 26 20:24:54 EDT 2016

Dear Mailman Cognoscenti,

I'm helping one of my list owners send out 5K plus invitations to
students to subscribe to his mailing list.  Our current configuration:

    Mailman v2.1.20
    RHEL v5.11
    Semdmail v8.13.8
    Apache v2.2.3

Since this was the first time doing this, I suggested breaking the
batch input into 3 groups, 50, 500, and the rest.  The 50 went fine,
as did the 500, but the largest batch gave him a generic web server

> Internal Server Error
> The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was
> unable to complete your request.
> Please contact the server administrator, root at conundrum.unh.edu and
> inform them of the time the error occurred, and anything you might
> have done that may have caused the error.
> More information about this error may be available in the server
> error log.

I looked at the logs and I couldn't find anything that hinted at what
went wrong.  So I asked the owner to send me the last back and I'd
give it a try.  I wrote a script that removed folks already subscribed
to his list and split the remaining subscribers up into 6 files with a
thousand records each.  I just tried uploading the 1st batch of 1K,
with the following options:

     Subscribe these users now... (*) Invite
     Send welcome message...      (*) No
     Send notifications...        (*) No

And entered a 7 line paragraph explaining the invitation.

I ended up having the same error happen.  Looking at the Mailman logs,
I can't see any difference before or after my submission.  In the
HTTPD logs, I see:

>> [Fri Aug 26 19:59:23 2016] [warn] [client] Timeout
>> waiting for output from CGI script
>> /usr/local/mailman/cgi-bin/admin, referer:
>> https://lists.unh.edu/mailman/admin/campus.connection/members/add

>> [Fri Aug 26 19:59:23 2016] [error] [client]
>> Premature end of script headers: admin, referer:
>> https://lists.unh.edu/mailman/admin/campus.connection/members/add

So is there an inherent limit to the number of invites that can be
submitted via the web form?

As a work around, how would I do large invites on behalf of the owner
from the command line, including the 'extra text' that is allowed via
the web interface?

                                   the UNH Mailing List Server Admins
                                   Bill Costa, senior admin
                                   (603) 862-3056

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