Guide: LISTSERV security settings

Tags SysOps

Purpose

  • To provide general guidance on selecting and modifying popular LISTSERV configuration settings according to list purpose and intended audience

User

  • LISTSERV list owner

Environment

  • 10283: LISTSERV

Guidelines 

List configuration settings can be established at two points:

  • When requesting the list: LISTSERV list request form allows you to use drop-down lists to select from the available options for each configuration setting
  • After the list is created: Change the list settings after your distribution list is created by editing its header using the List Configuration (Listname) menu and the various, colored tabs

Note: If your list has already been created, you can modify the configuration settings by editing the list header using the configuration tabs in the web interface. For details on how to access the List Configuration (Listname) menu tabs, see the related item Changing LISTSERV list security settings.

 

Attachments

LISTSERV can handle attachments in several different ways. These settings are found on the orange Access Control tab in the List Configuration (Listname) menu. For more information, review LISTSERV's Access Control Keywords.

Option  Description Edit List Header
Allow all attachments All attachments sent to list are distributed to all subscribers 
This simple method can also open a list to virus-related attachments
Attachments= Yes
Remove attachments from messages All attachments are stripped from incoming messages before messages are distributed to list
This protects list from email-borne viruses, but prevents subscribers from posting legitimate attachments for distribution
Attachments= No,Filter
Reject messages with attachments Any messages with attachments are rejected and sent back to sender without being distributed to list
Often, previous option will be more effective
Attachments= No

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List Visibility

Most lists appear in an index of Miami LISTSERV lists at listserv.miamioh.edu/archives. This option allows a list owner to control whether a list appears in this index or not. These settings are found on the blue Security tab in the List Configuration (Listname) menu. For more information, review LISTSERV's Security Keywords.

Option  Description Edit List Header
List visible Makes list name, title, and subscriber count appear on list index Confidential= No
List hidden Prevents list from appearing on list index
If list has public archives, these archives will still be web-accessible, but there will be no link to archives on list index page
Confidential= Yes

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Archives

LISTSERV can keep archives of all messages sent. IT Services policy requests the creation of these archives as a way to identify lists that fall into disuse and can be deleted. These archives can be very useful to list subscribers who have accidentally deleted a message or want to refer to older list messages. Archives are available at http://listserv.miamioh.edu/archives/listname.html where listname is the name of the list. These archives will exist and be available even if List Visibility is set to hidden (Confidential= Yes), there simply will not be a link to the archives on the list index page. These settings are found on the light blue List Maintenance tab in the List Configuration (Listname) menu. For more information, review LISTSERV's List Maintenance and Moderation Keywords.

Option  Description Edit List Header
List archives are public Allows anyone to visit and read list archives Notebook= Public
List archives are restricted to subscribers Allows only subscribers to visit and read list archives after logging in to LISTSERV web interface Notebook= Private

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Reply-To

Replies to list messages can either be directed back to the message's sender or back to the entire list. This option allows a list owner to set this behavior for a list. Please note that changing this option does not change the behavior for messages previously sent to the list, it only affects the Reply-To behavior of new messages. These settings are found on the green Distribution tab in the List Configuration (Listname) menu. For more information, review LISTSERV's Distribution Keywords.

Option  Description Edit List Header
Replies to list messages go to message sender Replies default back to original message sender
Subscribers must explicitly reply to list, if they desire
Reply-To= Sender,Respect
Replies go back to list Replies default back to entire list
May be troublesome
Subscribers who are unfamiliar with mailing lists can easily send personal replies back to entire list
Reply-To= List,Ignore

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Subscriber Review

By default anyone can request a list of subscribers for any given list. This option lets a list owner control who has access to this feature. These settings are found on the orange Access Control tab in the List Configuration (Listname) menu. For more information, review LISTSERV's Access Control Keywords.

Option  Description Edit List Header
Only subscribers can request list of subscribers Restricts subscriber review to only current list subscribers Review= Private
Anyone can request list of subscribers Opens subscriber review to anyone
May create security and privacy issues 
Review= Public Only
List owners can request list of subscribers Restricts subscriber review to only the list owners
Useful for lists on which subscribers shouldn't know about other subscribers
Review= Owner

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Send

LISTSERV allows a list owner to restrict who can send messages to a list. This option provides several possibilities. These settings are found on the orange Access Control tab in the List Configuration (Listname) menu. For more information, review LISTSERV's Access Control Keywords.

Option  Description Edit List Header
Anyone can post to list  Allows all incoming messages to be distributed to list
Works well for public discussion list, or any list to which general public should be allowed to send messages
Send= Public
Only subscribers can post to list  Allows subscribers to post to list and rejects messages from non-subscribers 
Works well for private discussion list, like fraternity or sorority

Will expose problems with subscribers whose messages contain different From address than their subscription address
Send= Private
All messages are sent to editor for approval Blocks all incoming messages and sends them to editor for approval
Often used for an announcement-only list on which subscribers should not be allowed to send messages to list
Send= Editor,Hold,Confirm

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Subscription

Subscription options allow a list owner to determine how subscription requests are handled. These settings are found on the Subscription tab in the List Configuration (Listname) menu. For more information, review LISTSERV's Subscription Keywords.

Option  Description Edit List Header
Anyone can subscribe to list  Allows anyone to subscribe to list via web interface or email — no approval is necessary  Subscription= Open,Confirm
Owner must approve all subscription requests Allows anyone to request subscription to list, pending approval of list owner
If owner approves, requestor will be subscribed to list
Subscription= By_owner
No subscription requests are honored Rejects all subscription requests with message stating that list is closed to subscriptions Subscription= Closed

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Details

Article ID: 6227
Created
Tue 5/26/15 11:03 AM
Modified
Thu 12/19/19 1:29 PM
Can you resolve this issue yourself?
Yes! This is self-service with a smile.