These are some frequently asked questions (along with the answers) about the MySQL mailing lists (not the topics discussed on the lists). Before asking questions on the mailing lists, you are always encouraged to make use of the online documentation to see if you can find your own answer.


I got sent spam via lists.mysql.com. Can you stop it?

In almost all cases, we find that the spam did not actually come from lists.mysql.com. Unfortunately, some spammers have taken to adding forged Received header lines that happen to mention lists.mysql.com.

Every once in a while, someone sends a spam email to our discussion lists that makes it through our spam filtering. While we do our best to avoid this, the methods and persistence of some spammers makes avoiding all such spam impossible.


I'm having trouble unsubscribing from the list, can you help?

Yes, but the best way to get unsubscribed is to use the URL that is included in the footer of every message you receive from the list, which looks something like: http://lists.mysql.com/listname?unsub=joeschmoe@example.com. Even if you are not able to send email from that address, you will be able to confirm your unsubscribe request.

If you find yourself unable to unsubscribe from one of our mailing lists, send an email to list-admin@lists.mysql.com. In your request to be unsubscribed, please tell us which of our mailing lists you are subscribed to, what address (or addresses) you may be subscribed with, and include a copy of one of the most recent message you have received from the list.

Keep in mind that there's a human being at the other end of that last email address, so you'll have to be patient.


I asked a question, but nobody answered me! Why not?

Most answers on the mailing list come from volunteers, and there is information you can provide that will make it easier, and thus more likely, that people will answer your question. Eric Raymond and Rick Moen have written a paper about how to ask your question in a way that is most likely to get someone to help you: "How To Ask Questions The Smart Way". Please note that Eric and Rick are not able to provide help using our mailing lists or MySQL software.

If you can't get an answer for your questions from one of our mailing lists, one option is to pay for support from MySQL AB, which will put you in direct contact with MySQL developers. See our support page for more details.


I sent an email to the list, but it never made it. What happened?

First, the lists do not accept emails formatted using HTML. You should receive a rejection notice for such emails.

Second, if you send email to the list using an email address that is different from what you used to subscribe to the mailing list (or you are not subscribed to the mailing list at all), you will be sent an email with instructions on how you can verify that you are a real person. You may need to double-check your own mail filters to make sure that the instructions were not treated as spam.


Why isn't the list set up so that it forces my email client to send to the list when I reply to messages?

This is an oft-debated topic with regard to mailing lists. There are a pair of well-known treatises on the subject: "Reply-To" Munging Considered Harmful and "Reply-To" Munging Considered Useful. We agree with the author of the first.

If you use procmail for sorting your email, you can also use it to add a Reply-To header if that is the behavior you desire. Here's an example of how to sort messages from the general MySQL list to a dedicated folder, and also rewriting the Reply-To header:

:0
* List-ID:.*mysql.mysql.com
{
  # filter the Reply-To: line so it goes to the list, not the sender
  :0hfW
  | formail -Ybi "Reply-To: mysql@lists.mysql.com"

  # send to proper mailbox
  :0
  mysql
}

Why don't the lists include a tag like [MySQL] in the Subject header for mail sorting?

None of our mailing lists include a subject prefix, such as [MySQL], because that takes up space that could be used to provide a more clear subject. To be able to sort mail from the lists, they all include a "List-ID" header that looks something like: List-ID: <mysql.mysql.com>.

Here are instructions for how to do so with some popular mail clients:

procmail

You can use a rule like this one to sort the mail from the general MySQL mailing list into a folder name "mysql-general".

:0:
* ^List-ID:.*mysql\.mysql\.com
mysql-general
Apple Mail
  1. Select "Preferences..." from the "Mail" menu.
  2. Click on the "Rules" toolbar icon.
  3. Click the "Add Rule" button.
  4. In the first condition, select "Edit Header List..." from the pulldown. (It will say "From" at first.)
  5. Enter List-ID in the "Header" field and click "Add Header" and then "OK". (You will only have to do this step once.)
  6. Select "List-ID" in the first condition.
  7. Enter the list identifier in the text field to the right of the pulldown that says "Contains". (For example, mysql.mysql.com for the general list.)
  8. Select the mailbox you wish to transfer the message to in the pulldown in the "Perform the following actions:" section.
  9. Click "OK".
Eudora (Macintosh)
  1. From the "Window" menu, select the "Filters" item.
  2. In the window that appears, select the "New" button.
  3. For "Match:", select "Incoming" and "Manual".
  4. For "Header:", enter List-ID:
  5. From the popup, select "contains", and enter mysql.mysql.com in the text box to the right of the popup.
  6. For "Actions:", select "Transfer To" from the first popup, then select a mailbox into which list messages should be stored.
  7. Close the filters window, and select "Save" when Eudora asks you whether to save your changes.
Mozilla Mail

To sort mail from the MySQL General Mailing List into a subfolder of your Inbox folder named "MySQL List", follow this procedure:

  1. Right-click on "Inbox", choose "New Folder...". When prompted, name the new folder MySQL List and click "OK".
  2. From the "Tools" menu, choose "Message Filters..." to set up a new mail filter.
  3. In the dialogue window named "Filter Rules":
    • Enter some descriptive "Filter Name", e.g. MySQL Mailing List.
    • Leave the default setting for "For incoming messages that: Match any of the following" as is.
    • From the dropdown menues, choose "To or cc" (default is "Subject") and "contains" (which is the default). Enter "mysql@lists.mysql.com" into the text box next to those dropdown menues.
    • Under "Perform these actions", check "Move to folder". In the dropdown menu next to the checkbox, choose the folder "MySQL List" that you set up in step 1.
  4. Click "OK".

I'm subscribed to the digest, and it arrives as a bunc h of .ezm attachments. How am I supposed to view them?

These .ezm attachments are the original messages in RFC-822 format. If you are using Microsoft Outlook Express, you need to follow the instructions below to configure it to handle the attachments properly:

  1. Run Windows Explorer "Start/Programs/Windows Explorer"
  2. Choose View/Options... then click on the "File Types" tab.
  3. Click "New Type..." In the dialog box, enter the following:
        Descripton of type: Outlook Express Mail Message
        Associated extension: .ezm
        Content type (MIME): message/rfc822
        Actions:
            Select "New..."
            In the dialog box, enter:
                Action: open
            For "Application used to perform action:"
                Click "Browse..." and go to Outlook Express (probably under
                My Computer/C:/Program Files/Outlook Express/msimn.exe), 
                Click "Open".
                After the quote ("), add a space and this to the end:
                    /eml:%1
                The default is this:
                    "C:\PROGRAM FILES\OUTLOOK EXPRESS\MSIMN.EXE" /eml:%1
                Click "OK"
            Click "OK" again.
    
  4. Click "Close"

There's a problem with the lists, who should I contact?

You can contact list-admin@mysql.com.