4. Communicating with Mailing List Servers

You send administrative commands to a mailing list server in the form of email messages. The messages should be sent to the general administration address (not to the address of the list itself). For Ezmlm the command is always part of the To address. Any results of your commands will be returned to you via email; you may also be sent a log file.

Whenever you subscribe to a mailing list you will normally be sent a "welcome" message from the list owner. This message will contain instructions on how to send messages to the list and, more importantly, how to unsubscribe. It is advisable to keep these messages so that you can refer back to them at a later date.

The different mailing list systems have different sets of commands which may be used to find out what lists are available and to manage your subscriptions. There is, unfortunately, no consistent set of commands used by all mailing list software - an exception being the command help which will get you a list of other commands available.

4.1. Ezmlm and Sympa Lists at maillist.ox.ac.uk

The following are the addresses for basic commands that can be sent to both Ezmlm and Sympa based mailing lists:

listname -help to receive a help file
listname -info to find out more about a particular list
listname -subscribe to add yourself to a particular list
listname -unsubscribe to take yourself off a list

4.2. Who can use Oxford's maillist service?

The mailing list service at Oxford is open to all members of the University who wish to set up mailing lists relating to the academic and social/cultural life of the University.

4.3. Jiscmail Lists

The JISCmail facility is a nationally funded service to provide mailing lists for the UK academic community. It holds a large number of lists covering a wide range of academic disciplines. JISCmail uses its own set of commands, sent to the address jiscmail@jiscmail.ac.uk, including:

help to receive a help file
get jisclist memo to see a list of all current lists
review listname to find out more about a particular list
join listname firstname lastname to add yourself to a particular list
leave listname to take yourself off a list
leave * to take yourself off all lists you are subscribed to
set listname nomail stop messages sent to the list being forwarded to you
set listname mail start messages being sent to you again
query * Find out which lists you belong to

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