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Central IT

SYMPA for list owners

List configuration

Parameters configured by the Central IT

Few parameters are set by the IT services. These are parameters which can disturb the operation of the whole server:

  • Quotas of the archives of the single lists

Parameters configured by IT managers

There are parameters that require a special trust in the configuring person and that do not have to be taken over by the IT services. Such parameters can be set by the IT managers:

  • Hierarchical lists

Parameters configured by list owners

All parameters of the lists that list owners are allowed to change can be customized on the web pages. We would like to highlight just a few here:

  • The list description/visibility item defines who gets to see the list for a possible subscription.
  • Under Admin/Configure list/Data source external data sources (databases, Ldap data, files, SYMPA lists) can be specified. Passwords, which have to be entered here in part, are stored in clear text on the server. Set up accordingly.
  • For database queries, make sure that multiple entries are eliminated during the query if possible (e.g. select distinct <row> from <table>)..
  • Database queries should be checked for validity before configuration. Sympa sometimes has problems to correctly update changed queries immediately.

Special constructs

  • Authorization lists : Corresponding to write.nd implementation in Majordomo, we have introduced a construct that allows to separate the group of senders from the group of receivers without having to maintain a list of moderators that goes on for ages. This is done with an "authorization list". This is a closed SYMPA list , whose purpose is to provide a set of email addresses, but which does not receive or send email. Such a list has the name <listname>_auth. Now, in an actual mailing list <listname>, the parameter "Admin/Configure list/Send Receive/Who can send messages" can be set to "byauthorizedlist". This allows only the members of the <listname>_auth list to be allowed into the list's

Authorization hierarchy

In the list configuration, scenarios are used to control the various permissions and views in detail. The permissions range from worldwide view to restriction to the list owner. The list below shows this hierarchy and its individual levels. It is important to ensure that when the list is created, the corresponding permissions are also set so restrictively that the list can subsequently be well controlled by the owner and is not used for mass spams or other illegal activities.


Level Name in SYMPA
Owner owner
Moderator editor
Subscriber private intranet uzh
logged in auth
everyone public/open

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