[Replicant] Changes on how the mailing list handles email addresses

Denis 'GNUtoo' Carikli GNUtoo at cyberdimension.org
Tue Jul 20 16:19:51 UTC 2021


We have got a bug report of someone not being able to receive the
Replicant mailing list though OSUOSL which handles the Replicant
mailing list, along with pointers on how we could fix it.

Background information:
You can skip this section if you are already familiar with mail servers
can reject mails from mailing list because of DMARC/SPF/DKIM etc.

The issue is that nowadays many mail servers verify if the mail server
sending the mail matches the email address to increase security.

There are several standards to do that (DMARC, SPF, DKIM, etc)

Without such standard, anyone can choose any mail address to send the
mail from, and servers would blindly accept that.

So for instance anyone could send emails as GNUtoo at
cyberdimension.org (which is my mail address) from many servers around
the world that accept to send such emails.

So before I did any changes, if I sent a mail to the mailing list as
GNUtoo with my cyberdimension.org address, the mailing list software
(Mailman) hosted at osuosl will send the mail from osuosl.org and not
from cyberdimension.org while keeping my address in the from. 

So some mail servers would simply reject that mail and all the other
mails sent from the Replicant mailing list.

How it was fixed:
So, to fix it I changed the way Mailman handles the From field: I
configured mailman to rewrite the From field in the emails it sends.

The only other option we have with Mailman 2.1.29 was to not touch the
message being sent but wrap it in a special MIME attachment. As I've no
idea if all supported mail clients support that new standard, I didn't
choose that option.

I was also pointed to this wiki page that has more information on the
topic: https://wiki.list.org/DEV/DMARC

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