Chapter 13. Mailing Lists and ~/.forward

A mailing list is the name of a single recipient[19] that, when expanded by sendmail aliasing, becomes a list of many recipients. Mailing lists can be internal (in which all recipients are listed in the aliases file), external (in which all recipients are listed in external files), or a combination of the two. The list of recipients that forms a mailing list can include users, programs, and files.

What’s New with V8.13

There is one new addition to mailing lists, but it is not covered until Chapter 23:

  • Extend the use of LDAP to include aliases files so that LDAP recursion can be used to automate mailing list creation via LDAP queries (Section 23.1.2 [V8.13]).

Here, we cover a few of the do’s and don’ts of mailing list management that were omitted from the third edition.

Mail List Etiquette

Managing your own mailing lists can become tricky, especially in light of the recent explosion of spam email and the effort and cost of fighting it. In this section, we cover positive behaviors associated with mailing lists that will help you avoid being labeled a spam emailer.

  • Clearly indicate subscription and management information

  • Keep messages small

  • Don’t use the To: or Cc: headers to create lists

  • Let software do the job for you

  • Boot members who send spam email

Before we begin, however, we need to mention the difference between an “open list” and a “closed list.” An open list allows anyone interested in it to subscribe through some (usually) automatic process. ...

Get sendmail 8.13 Companion now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.