[BALUG-Admin] dreamhost list issues?

Rick Moen rick@linuxmafia.com
Fri Mar 27 08:48:45 PDT 2009

Quoting Michael Paoli (Michael.Paoli@cal.berkeley.edu):

> Hmmm, just noticed, getting some errors on the dreamhost hosted list
> archives, e.g. this works:
> http://lists.balug.org/pipermail/balug-announce-balug.org/2009-March/date.html
> but following liks from there, e.g.:
> http://lists.balug.org/pipermail/balug-announce-balug.org/2009-March/000125.html
> doesn't work

Specifically, one gets both 403 (forbidden), and 404 (not found).
If you're able to go in at shell level, have a look at permissions and
ownership of files in
$MAILMANHOME/archives/public/balug-announce-balug.org/2009-March/ .

Here, from my own Debian-based Mailman server, is the contents of one
such directory:

drwxrwsr-x 2 root list 1024 2005-05-23 20:33 .
drwxrwsr-x 5 root list 1024 2005-05-24 03:27 ..
-rw-rw-r-- 1 root list 3562 2005-05-23 20:33 000011.html
-rw-rw-r-- 1 root list 1681 2005-05-23 20:33 author.html
-rw-rw-r-- 1 root list 1685 2005-05-23 20:33 date.html
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root list   11 2005-05-23 20:33 index.html -> thread.html
-rw-rw-r-- 1 root list 1679 2005-05-23 20:33 subject.html
-rw-rw-r-- 1 root list 1748 2005-05-23 20:33 thread.html

If you don't have access from the shell, then I guess you'll need to
open a ticket with Dreamhost staff.

Obviously, I cannot guarantee the exact
pathspec applies:  A hosting company might do weird things to where
Mailman's pipermail puts things.  But I assume you can figure out where
the balug-announce-balug.org mailing list's files are.

> Seems to mostly (or entirely) be just some of the newer archived stuff
> (or stuff that *should* be archived).

Well, the $MAILMANHOME/bin/arch utility, which is the engine for
pipermail, probably screws up permissions/ownership on occasion.  I've
never seen it do so in its automated operations.  I _have_ seen it do 
so when I wield bin/arch manually to rebuild a list's HTML archive:  You
successfully rebuild the list, but then get 403 Forbidden errors.  You
go into the archive/public/[listname] tree and look, and lo!  It created
files with the wrong group ownership, or something like that.
chown/chgrp them to match other nearby trees, and everything works

As a less likely candidate explanation (speculation only), I guess
filesystem damage could also cause such symptoms.

By the way, when I say $MAILMANHOME, I don't literally mean the homedir
shown in /etc/passwd for a user.  I mean the main Mailman basedir.  On
Debian, that's /var/lib/mailman.  "$MAILMANHOME" is a term I picked up
from some of the documentation, somewhere (and I might have mutated it,
for all I know).

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