Great Circle Associates Majordomo-Users
(October 1996)
 

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Subject: Fwd:Important fix for majordomo email list users
From: chris <chris @ sparkie . osl . state . or . us>
Date: Fri, 18 Oct 96 10:01:36 +1200
To: <majordomo-users @ greatcircle . com>

I received this and am wondering if anyone else has seen it and 
implemented it.

Christopher Adams

******************************************************************

WARNING TO ALL MAJORDOMO ADMINISTRATORS: The patch below is required
to prevent infinite loops of bounced messages from nonstandard mailers.

I've been hit by another infinite loop of bounced messages problem in a
majordomo email list. The problem is due to subscribers that have
defective email gateways, and bounce messages to the wrong address.

I'm sending this fix here since, unfortunately, government users have a
disproportionate share of proprietary email (and X.400) systems that do
not work properly. (Most Internet Providers, universities, and high-tech
compaines use Unix systems with a "standard" mailer. Governments
historically use mainframes and proprietary software, and fear Unix
as if it were a communist plot. (Public domain software, after all!))

If you subscribe to an email list, you probably (or will sometime) have
been flooded with a loop of messages. If you have majordomo at your site,
you should apply these changes or you too will be hit by this problem.
Please pass along this message to the majordomo maintainers. You may wish
so save this and forward it to the list admins on other majordomo elists
you subscribe to which are hit by this bug.

You can also help by finding and eliminating defective email systems.  I
don't know how to get government Information Resources Management policies
changed, but at least people need to complain about such defects.  The
typical retoric that "X.400 will solve email incompatibility" is flat
wrong, and needs to be reversed. Governments need systems that conform to
the vast majority of other internetworked email systems, not a proprietary
system with a big name or one based on a hypothetical or MIL-only 
standard.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

The problem is that a mailer does not properly follow the "Errors-To:"
header and bounces messages to the elist. Moreover, the Subject: header
does not conform to the "usual" mailer error message (Unix sendmail is the
"standard" behavior used by nearly all Internet email systems), thus
majordomo can't catch this bug.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

The main problem is that mailers ignore (or lose) the "Errors-To:"
header. This problem should be reported as a serious bug, and corporate
and government CIO's should ban such mailers in thier organization.
(CIO's should also ban mailers that lose the From: address, but since
big names like Lotus/ccmail do this, it's probably a lost cause.)

To determine if a mailer has this problem, send email to a bogus
user in the domain, e.g. bogus@????????, and set the Errors-To: to
some other email address. (This may need to be done from outside a
proprietary email system to test a gateway.) If the message does not
bounce to the Errors-To address, this system could cause an infinite
loop if the subject line in the bounce message doesn't match a "usual"
email system.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here is a patch to majordomo-1.93.tar.Z which will filter many of the
bounced messages that cause infinite loops, including some vacation
programs: (use "patch" or manually edit)

diff -c resend.orig resend
*** resend.orig Fri Sep  8 17:03:56 1995
--- resend      Thu Oct 17 11:04:16 1996
***************
*** 206,218 ****
                       && (/^subject:\s*subscribe\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*unsubscribe\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*help\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*RCPT:\b/ ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Delivery Confirmation\b/ ||
!                          /^subject:\s*NON-DELIVERY of:/ ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Undeliverable Message\b/ ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Receipt Confirmation\b/ ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Failed mail\b/ ||
!                          /^subject:\s.*\bchange\b.*\baddress\b/ ||
                           /^subject:\s*request\b.*\baddition\b/i)) {
                       &bounce("Admin request");
                       }
--- 206,232 ----
                       && (/^subject:\s*subscribe\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*unsubscribe\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*help\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*RCPT:\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Delivery Confirmation\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*NON-DELIVERY of:/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Undeliverable Message\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Receipt Confirmation\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Failed mail\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Mail failure\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Message not deliverable\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Delivery of Certified mail\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Service Message\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Delivery problems with your 
mail\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Delivery(-| )Report\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*AUTO-REPLY\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Waiting Mail\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*REJECTED:/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Invalid destination\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Non-Receipt Notification\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*Returned mail\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s*unable to deliver mail\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s.*\baway from my mail\b/i ||
!                          /^subject:\s.*\bchange\b.*\baddress\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*request\b.*\baddition\b/i)) {
                       &bounce("Admin request");
                       }
%% End %%

I sent a similar fix last year. If you applied these fixes, you need to
apply the following patch:

diff -c resend.9508 resend
*** resend.9508 Thu Oct 17 09:45:08 1996
--- resend      Thu Oct 17 11:04:16 1996
***************
*** 212,217 ****
--- 212,228 ----
                           /^subject:\s*Undeliverable Message\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*Receipt Confirmation\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*Failed mail\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Mail failure\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Message not deliverable\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Delivery of Certified mail\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Service Message\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Delivery problems with your 
mail\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Delivery(-| )Report\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*AUTO-REPLY\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Waiting Mail\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*REJECTED:/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Invalid destination\b/i ||
+                          /^subject:\s*Non-Receipt Notification\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*Returned mail\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s*unable to deliver mail\b/i ||
                           /^subject:\s.*\baway from my mail\b/i ||
%% End %%

For majordomo-1.94a3 users, the corresponding patch is:

diff -c sample.cf.orig sample.cf
*** sample.cf.orig      Thu Oct 17 11:10:25 1996
--- sample.cf   Thu Oct 17 11:21:17 1996
***************
*** 202,207 ****
--- 202,217 ----
  /^subject:\s*Returned mail\b/i
  /^subject:\s*unable to deliver mail\b/i
  /^subject:\s.*\baway from my mail\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*Message not deliverable\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*Delivery of Certified mail\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*Service Message\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*Delivery problems with your mail\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*Delivery(-| )Report\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*AUTO-REPLY\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*Waiting Mail\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*REJECTED:/i
+ /^subject:\s*Invalid destination\b/i
+ /^subject:\s*Non-Receipt Notification\b/i
  END

  # Taboo body contents to catch and forward to the approval address
%% End %%
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Carl Hage                                              C. Hage Associates
<email:carl@chage.com> Voice/Fax: 1-408-244-8410       1180 Reed Ave #51
<http://www.chage.com/chage/>                          Sunnyvale, CA 94086




-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= RFC822 Headers Follow
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
X-ENSMTPTo: freesem
X-ENSMTPSubnet: fcmail
X400-Received: by /c=US/admd= /prmd=or.gov/; converted ( IA5-Text);  
Relayed; 
  17 Oct 1996 16:26:24 -0700
X400-Received: by mta Salem-MTA1 in /c=US/admd= /prmd=or.gov/; converted (
   IA5-Text);  Relayed; 17 Oct 1996 16:26:24 -0700
X400-MTS-Identifier: [/c=US/admd= /prmd=or.gov/; 
065F53266C0A0001-Salem-MTA1]
Content-Identifier: 065F53266C0A0001
Content-Return: Allowed
X400-Content-Type: P2-1988 ( 22 )
Conversion: Allowed
Original-Encoded-Information-Types: IA5-Text
Priority: normal
Disclose-Recipients: Prohibited
Alternate-Recipient: Allowed
X400-Originator: Kelly.HARMS@state.or.us
X400-Recipients: non-disclosure;
Message-Id: 
  <"065F53266C0A0001*/c=us/admd=
/prmd=or.gov/o=CBS/ou=msmac/s=HARMS/g=Kelly/"@MHS>
Date: 17 Oct 1996 16:26:24 -0700
From: HARMS Kelly <Kelly.HARMS@state.or.us>
To: "FREESE Michael" <Michael.FREESE@state.or.us> (Return requested) 
(Receipt
notification requested),
    "SANCHEZ Mike A" <Mike.A.SANCHEZ@state.or.us> (Return requested) 
(Receipt
notification requested),
    PEREZ Ernest R <Ernest.R.PEREZ@state.or.us> (Return requested)
Return-Receipt-To: HARMS Kelly <Kelly.HARMS@state.or.us>
Subject: FW: Important fix for majordomo email list users
MIME-Version: 1.0



--

Mike Freese
freesem@fcmail.state.or.us
http://www.open.org/freesem
(503) 378-3397 Ext. 224
FAX (503) 373-7789


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