Local addition to mailman (lists.inf.ed.ac.uk)

We’ve recently made a small local change to mailman that allows users with the appropriate entitlement, automatic access to a list admin web page. Similarily, entitlements can now also be used to limit the visibility of the mailing list archives.

Entitlements are attributed to groups of users (or individuals), typically according to their status in the School Database. For example, all staff are given the “login/staffssh/remote” entitlement, and that allows them to remote login to staff.ssh.inf.ed.ac.uk.

So if you have a group of people (for example, ITO admin staff) that need to administer the various teaching-related mailing lists, and as they already have the entitlement “role/ito-admin”, that entitlement can be added to the new “admin_entitlement” field on the “General Options” page:

general options screenshot

Example of admin_entitlements option from the General Options page

In this example, the computing staff – role/sysman – would also have access.

Similarily the new field “read_archive_entitlement” has been added to the “Archiving Options” page. This gives users with the specified role the permission to view otherwise private web archives. Normally it is just the list members that can see private archives. This could be useful for taught course student lists, where normally only the students on that particular course can see the web archives, but perhaps we’d like students from the whole year to see the archives.

screenshot of read_archive_entitlement option

Example of read_archive_entitlement option on the Archiving Options page.

In this example any user with the “roles/student” entitlement would be able to view the web archives.

These entitlement changes require the use of our Cosign service, which means people must view the pages on lists.inf.ed.ac.uk via the HTTPS version of the URL, eg
https://lists.inf.ed.ac.uk/mailman/private/inf-general/ to view the inf-general web archive.

If this sounds like it may be of use to you, but are not sure about “entitlements”, submit a support ticket and we’ll give you a hand.


About neilb

Computing staff at the University of Edinburgh. Part of the Services Unit.
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