[Mailman-Users] e-mails being kind of blackholed when sent to list or list-robot

Mark Sapiro mark at msapiro.net
Sat Feb 20 12:42:09 EST 2016

On 2/20/16 6:06 AM, Fernando Gont wrote:
> Meta answer: quite to my surprise, the problem was that mailman wasn't
> running. Apparently the reason was that, when the system was rebooted,
> mailman failed to start because there was no mailman@ list. Once I
> created it, the problem was solved. (is this list really needed?)

Yes, it is needed. It is the sender of various notices including monthly
password reminders an the recipient of bounces thereof. It is also
exposed on the web admin and listinfo overview pages as a 'help' address
and depending on config may receive error notices from Mailman's cron
jobs. As such, it should have the Mailman admins as members and accept
non-member posts.

> I'm curious how I was able to start mailman in the first place, though.

So am I. Perhaps it existed and was deleted some time after mailman was

> More comments in-line...
>> Do the actual entries contain things like
>> status=sent (delivered to command: /usr/lib/mailman/mail/mailman request
>> ipv6hackers)
>> and
>> status=sent (delivered to command: /usr/lib/mailman/mail/mailman post
>> ipv6hackers)
>> Or do they perhaps say
>> status=sent (delivered via mailman service)
> The later.

In which case, you are using postfix_to_mailman.py delivery, but you
also have hash:/var/lib/mailman/data/aliases in alias_maps in Postfix
and MTA='Postfix' uncommented in mm_cfg.py

> #-------------------------------------------------------------
> # Uncomment if you use Postfix virtual domains (but not
> # postfix-to-mailman.py), but be sure to see
> # /usr/share/doc/mailman/README.Debian first.
> MTA='Postfix'

You are using postfix-to-mailman.py so you should have MTA=None

> #-------------------------------------------------------------
> # Uncomment this if you configured your MTA such that it
> # automatically recognizes newly created lists.
> # (see /usr/share/doc/mailman/README.Exim4.Debian or
> # /usr/share/mailman/postfix-to-mailman.py)
> # MTA=None   # Misnomer, suppresses alias output on newlist

Also, see <http://wiki.list.org/x/15564817>

> I thought that the emails had been lost, but when I was finally able to
> start mailman, it turned out they wasn't. -- I assume postfix coudln't
> really handle the mails to mailman, and hence queued them?

Not exactly. Postfix delivered the mail via postfix_to_mailman.py and it
queued the mail in Mailman's in/ queue where it waited for
IncomingRunner to process it. When you started Mailman (actually the
qrunners), IncomingRunner processed the mail.

Also note, steps 2.2 and 6.2 in the FAQ at
<http://wiki.list.org/x/4030723> would have pointed you to the problem.

Mark Sapiro <mark at msapiro.net>        The highway is for gamblers,
San Francisco Bay Area, California    better use your sense - B. Dylan

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