Make your own free website on

Macjordomo © -

A Macintosh Listserver by Michele Fuortes

Brought to you as freeware by Leuca Software(TM).

Please make sure you read limitations on use and redistribution at the end of this document.

Developed with support from the Office of Academic Computing at Cornell
University Medical College, and help by Steve Erde, Bob Hablutzel, Eric Hagberg
and others. TCP/IP low level routines (and advice) by Peter "the Great" Lewis.

What is a list server?

A program that distributes email to a large number of people that are all subscribers to the same list. How does this works? Somebody send an email message to the list address. Macjordomo picks up the message from the list address and send it to the members of the list.
With Macjordomo you can also either subscribe/unsubscribe people by hand yourself or let the users do it themselves by sending email to the listserver address

What do you need?

You need:

Macintosh : The minimum system I tested it is a SE30. It needs a 32bit clean system (this is a problem only in machines before a IIci, in which case you need Mode32)

Internet connection : it does not have to be a permanent connection. Macjordomo works well with a dial-up connection, BUT you have to start the connection before starting Macjordomo. If you don't do that it will tell you that "You don't have the hardware or software necessary to run this program".

Mail server (POP3/SMTP) : to hold your mail. It does not have to be on the same Macintosh. You can use any mail server (UNIX, Macintosh, etc.). You can use your ISP (Internet Server Provider) server. If you have a permanent Internet connection you might want to run AIMS (Apple Internet Mail Server) on the same Macintosh

Mailboxes: for optimal use Macjordomo needs one mailbox for each list you want to create plus one for the listserver address. If you have control of the mail server (e.g. you use AIMS) you can create them yourself. Otherwise you can ask your system administrator (if you are at a University/School/Company) or your ISP. Most ISP do not charge at all (or charge few $) for extra mailboxes.

Recipe - A Macintosh Listserver -

In this example it's assumed that you want to create three lists.
All for wine lovers ;-)

One for Barolo lovers called: Barolo-Lovers
One for Bordeaux lovers called: Bordeaux-Lovers
One for Champagne lovers called: Champagne-Lovers

It also assumes that you use AIMS and that the Internet name of your Macintosh (i.e. the name that corresponds to your Macintosh IP number) is
If this last sentence does not make any sense, you are probably using an ISP so ask your ISP set the proper mailboxes or get help from your System Administrator.


Macjordomo ©
POP3/SMTP Server - Mailshare or AIMS by Glenn Anderson are
perfect but any other Mac or UNIX based system is fine
One POP address for each list you want to maintain
One POP address for subscriptions etc.

Five easy pieces:


Open AIMS:
Under Account Information create one account for every list
that you want to manage e.g.
with password Brunate
with password Margaux
with password Krug

plus one account for subscriptions:
with password omodrojcam
and one account for problems
with password momtsil

As I said in the case you are using an ISP that charges you for extra mailboxes, you don't need absolutely the account for subscriptions, if you are willing to manage them by hand, and you don't need the listmom address, you can use your personal address for that.

Note that the account for subscriptions can be called anything you want (subscription, listserv, listserver, etc. etc.)

If you are using another POP3/SMTP server follow the instructions of your server on how to create accounts.

2. Launch Macjordomo, it creates a preference file, a log file, an error
file and a folder to hold its own files in the Preferences folder.

3. Choose Subscription List...

Subscription Address: is the address where the requests for
subscriptions, option settings should be sent. In this example something like

POP Password: is the password for the subscription address.
e.g. omodrojcam (note: the same as in Mailshare)

SMTP Server: it's usually the same as the POP server but it can be
different. e.g.

Problems to: is the address where the problems, bounced mail etc. is
sent. MUST BE DIFFERENT from the subscription address or
you will generate nasty mail loops.

Accept Users Commands : check it to allow subscriptions and other

Subscription Interval: Timing between mail checking.

4. For each list that you want to create choose New List...

A window will appear with a list of options on the left (General and Digests) and settings on the right.

At the bottom there is a setting called Advanced. If all you want to do is a simple list just ignore it and set only the General and Digests settings...

There is also a Balloon icon. That one is to turn on balloon help but there are no balloons yet.

General Settings

List Name : name of the list, NO SPACES PLEASE.
e.g. Barolo-Lovers

List Address: is the address where the messages for the list are sent.
I suggest something like

The address does not have to be the same as the list name

POP Password: is the password for the subscription address.
e.g. Brunate (note: the same as in Mailshare)

SMTP Server: it's usually the same as the POP server but it can be
different. e.g.

Problems to: is the address where the problems, bounced mail etc. is
sent. MUST BE DIFFERENT from the subscription address or
you will generate nasty mail loops.

Reply to : You can choose the Reply To: field in the messages to be
filled with:
list address in which case the replies will go to the list for
everybody to read them.
original sender, in which cases replies would go to him/her.

Reply Address: if you choose Reply To List you can put here the same
address as the list ( or a

List is Active : check it to activate the list.

List interval: Enter the interval for the mail to be checked.

5. Click on Users if you want to enter the users yourself.

For each new user click on New:

Address: The subscriber E-mail address.

Real Name. the user real name Bacchus

Organization : Not necessary.

Send : set to send either individual messages or digest.

Conceal : the user name does not appear in a REVIEW request.

Send Ackn: the user receives an acknowledgment of the message he

Inactive : suspends the subscription.

Import : Import users from text files
(address, name separated by space, comma or tab)
Export : Exports users to text file

6. Digests settings

If you want digests to be created click on Create Digests and then fill the other settings

Digest Name : the name of the digest barolo-lovers-digest

Digest Folder : you can choose a different folder

Digest Interval: You can choose to have the digest sent when it
reaches a certain size or at a given interval.

7. You are done.

To test everything send a message to the list and then choose
Connect Now

Users can send command messages to the subscription address to subscribe, unsubscribe, change settings, get files etc.

The currently accepted commands from users are: the following and all
must appear in the *BODY* of the message. More than one
command can be sent on separate lines
BOLD TYPE denotes aliases. (i.e. just send sub instead of subscribe)

SUBSCRIBE List_Name Your_FirstName Your_LastName
Subscribes you to the list called List_Name.

Unsubscribes you from the list called List_Name.

Shows the list served at this site.

REVIEW List_Name
Shows the list of user currently subscribing to List_Name.

Sends a help message.

INDEX List_Name
List of files that can be GET
(Text files that must be put in the Digests folder)

SEARCH List_Name Key_Word
Searches the documents in INDEX for key_word

GET List_Name File_Name
Retrieves the file File_Name (must be a text file
in the digest folder)

INFO List_Name
Send info on the list (you have to edit the info to make it meaningful)

Set subscription parameters to OPTION for the list List_Name.
Currently available options are: (default options are indicated)

ACKN : Acknowledgment when you send a message to the list.
NOACKN : No Acknowledgment is sent [Default option].

CONCEAL : Hides your name from a REVIEW command.
NOCONCEAL : Shows your name [Default option].

ACTIVE : Makes your subscription active [Default option].
INACTIVE : Suspends subscription until an ACTIVE command.

DIGEST : Sends you a digest rather than individual messages.
MAIL : Sends you individual messages. [Default option]

REPRO: Sends a copy list messages also to the original sender
[Default option]
NOREPRO: Original senders do not get a copy of their message


Advanced settings:

You don't need to change this is all you want to run is a simple discussion list.

List type:

Open discussion list:
Anybody can post messages.

Only subscribers can post:
Only a subscriber can post. Note that the From: address of the message
has to be exactly the same as the subscriber.
i.e. and are NOT
the same address

Moderated list:
Only mail from the Moderator (or from the Allow Posting addresses)
will be sent to the list. All other mail will be redirected to the

Distribution (read-only) list:
Only mail from the Moderator (or from the Allow Posting addresses)
will be sent to the list. All other mail will be sent back to the sender
with a note explaining that the list is read-only

Insert the name of the moderator

Allow Moderator address as '... by way of...'
This setting will allow messages to be sent to the list if they have been
redirected by the moderator.

Use also POP password in the Subject field
Allow posting if the POP password of the list is present in the subject.
(The password will be deleted)

Always require POP password in the Subject for posting

Messages will be distributed ONLY if they contain the POP password
in the Subject (The password will be deleted).

Block posting of MIME attachments:
It will block messages that contains attachments.
Mail will be sent back to the sender explaining this.

Allow Posting:

This settings will allow you to limit posting to certain people. They also work with substring. Example:
You have a list from the Rome Polytechnic and you want only students to post you can add a Allow Posting with:
In this case ONLY mail with in the From address will go through.
If you want the whole Rome University to post put just in the Allow post.
All other mail will be sent back with a note.

Deny Posting:
Erase Posting:

They work very similarly to Allow posting. The difference is that with Deny posting a message is sent back saying that the address the mail is coming from is not allow to post. Example if you put in the Deny Posting, mail coming from the Italy Online ;-) domain will not go through.
Erase Posting just erases mail from a certain address. It's useful to make sure that mail from server, automated reply, or a spammer that you know is posting from a certain address is rejected.

User Commands

Allows you to block the list from all or just some specific users commands like subscribe, review, get, index. You can also hide the list from a LIST command.

Messages/Digests Headers/Footers

Allow you to add a few lines at the beginning and the end of each message and digests that goes to the list. It's useful to add reminders on how to unsubscribe, set digests, ask for help etc.

You can customize the Subject of the messages to be preceeded, followed or substituted with text of you choice.


Editing of Response Messages

You can edit the automatic response, i.e. the messages that Macjordomo returns
to the users that sent a command.
Generic messages are used if no list specific message is found. Changed generic
message (kept in the Macjordomo Preference file) can be reverted to Default (the
ones I wrote) messages in the Edit window.
List-specific messages (kept in each List file) can be reverted to generic messages
in the Edit window.


Disable Quit Menu
Self explanatory. You can use in a setting where you don't' have a dedicated

Process all waiting mail at the same time
Instead of processing one message per connection, process all messages
that are waiting in one go. Most useful if you are on a dial-up line.

Wrap messages at X characters.

Very few mailers (including Apple Mail) do not break long paragraphs into
single 80 chars lines. This option does it for them. Don't use it unless you
are having problems with messages that have lines cut off.

Common questions.

Q: I want list in which I'm the only one that can post.
That is called a Read-Only (or Distribution list). Check Read Only in the list
window, put you name in the Reply Address: field and choose Reply To Original
Sender. The list address will not be sent to the subscribers with a message.
Furthermore you can choose to Hide the list so that it does not appear in a LIST
command response.

Q: Do I need to have Macjordomo always running?
No, the beauty of it is that you can run it, distribute all the messages that are
waiting and then quit. This is particularly useful if you can use a POP mailbox
from a service provider and its SMTP server. Connect with a modem one or few
times a day. Run Macjordomo, quit when it's done. Disconnect the modem.

Q: Can I prevent other people from accidentally quit Macjordomo
Yes, in the Preferences... choose Disable Quit Menu

Q: I want to be able to moderate a list.
Very simple. Do this: Make sure Advanced.. is checked.
Choose List type..., Moderated List, add the Moderator Address.

Q: I want to be able to moderate the subscriptions as well
Make sure Advanced.. is checked. Go to User Commands, check deny subscribe

and problems

Q: Macjordomo does not connect.
The most common problem is a wrong password.

Q: I checked the password and Macjordomo still does not connect.
The second most common problem is a wrong address.

Q: Macjordomo connects, gets the messages but then nothing happens
The most common problem is a wrong SMTP server.......

Q: Macjordomo connects, gets the messages but then nothing happens and I checked the SMTP server
......followed by the fact that there are no users ;-)

Q: The digest are not created.
You did not fill a name or you chose a folder and then deleted it. Make sure
there is a name and that the folder you choose it's still there

Q: Macjordomo quits on its own.
If you have a lot of list or users Macjordomo quits if it finds itself with very little
memory. Check the Error Log and increase the memory partition for

I hope you will find this piece of software useful.
I wrote it in my spare time, to increase the use of Macintosh in the Internet
community and because I wanted to see if I was able to.

Developed with support from the Office of Academic Computing at Cornell
University Medical College, and help by Steve Erde, Bob Hablutzel, Eric Hagberg
and others.
TCP/IP low level routines (and advice) by Peter "the Great" Lewis.

Questions and comments:
Help and support:

Fine Print:

Macjordomo© is freeware.

Michele Fuortes (the author) grants you permission to use it and redistribute as freely as you like with the following limitations:

Permission is granted to copy both the software and the manual, provided no charge is made beyond reasonable reimbursement for duplication and handling costs, and provided that this notice is retained in all such copies.
This permission does NOT include reproduction of Macjordomo in CDROM or floppies accompanying books or other for-profit software collections.

The author hereby disclaims all warranties relating to this software. Any use of this software for purposes against current laws or regulation, included, but not limited to, dissemination of copyrighted or otherwise illegal material is EXPRESSELY PROHIBITED.

The author make no warranties, either express or implied, with respect to the Macjordomo software and/or associated materials provided, including but not limited to any warranty of merchantability, or of fitness for a particular purpose.

The author shall not be liable for any claims or damages whatsoever including property damage, personal injury, intellectual property infringement, loss of profits, data, sleep, patience or interruption of business, or for any special, consequential or incidental damages, however caused.

Original file name: macjordomo.txt - converted on Saturday, 1 April 2000, 14:30

This page was created using TextToHTML. TextToHTML is a free software for Macintosh and is (c) 1995,1996 by Kris Coppieters