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Multiple messages; Administrivia

I apologize for the multiple messages that people have been getting.  As you
may know we had to move SLUG off R20.UTEXAS.EDU as that host appeared to be
leaving the ARPANET imminently (but it now has a slight reprieve) and was
going to go away in the fall anyway.  I had been running the SLUG mailing list
at UT by telnetting there and using their machine when necessary.

We moved the mailing list to a machine at SRI that I have control over.  Only
after we did the move did I find out that our mailer had a misfeature that has
been causing problems.  It takes about 1 hour (clock, not CPU) to try to
deliver a message to each of the hosts on SLUG.  If during that time, either
the mailer dies or the system is taken down, the mailer starts all over again
on the list.  (This mailer has been used at sites where lots of mail is moved
around but it hadn't ever run into delivering a single piece of mail to a
large number of hosts.  The design had been intended to make sure mail never
got lost.)

We are also doing some code development on the machine that delivers the
mail.  Therefore it is going down once a day at lunchtime.  If SLUG mail
arrives between 11AM and Noon, it probably will be sent out twice to
some users.  (A week and a half ago, we had some network problems that
were causing this host to die more often.  There were several sets of
multiple messages sent out.)

We are attempting a modification to the mailer to prevent multiple mailings
from happening.  If this hasn't been done in about a week from now, I will
probably try to move the outgoing mail to another host under my control that
uses a different mailer.

Please bear with us.
Let me explain also a little bit about how I run this mailing list.  All
messages to SLUG are immediately sent out without me seeing them (I
actually don't get them until the end of the hour mentioned above--Other
people get it before I do.)  Mail to SLUG-REQUEST gets recorded into a file and
also put in my own personal mail box.  So I see those quite quickly.  I tend
to cache requests to be added to the list and process those about once a week.
I try to handle other requests (eg, deletion or address change) immediately.
Those new people added to the main list (ie, the one I maintain, but there are
a lot of people who read this via a local redistribution list) get the message
that I will append below.  I'm including it here for those people who never
saw it and also to tell people where I store archives that they can get to.

Also about once a week (usually when I add people), I wade through all the error
messages that I get.  It is my intent that people submitting mail to SLUG should
not get error messages about bad addresses.  I see megabytes of them each week.
I generally try to let an address that is generating a possibly temporary
error to stay on the mailing list for about a month.  If the address isn't
working then, I'll remove it.  Sometimes I can ask postmasters about people
whose accounts aren't accepting mail anymore.  Sometimes I get irritating,
information-less error messages from mailers (particularly Unix!) and I just
don't know how to handle them.  Most of the errors I get tend to be with hosts
that aren't accessible.  Those are very frustrating since I don't know whether
the host still exists or not.  I kept one host on the list for 6 months never
knowing when mail would start getting through.  (It finally did.)

Please, if you know you are changing addresses or losing your mail address,
let SLUG-REQUEST know.  I am happy for local people to maintain redistribution
lists as long as I have someone to contact at the site to point out problems
on their list.

Here is the welcome message that I send out to new users:
Subject: Welcome to SLUG mailing list
Reply-To: SLUG-Request@AI.SRI.COM

Welcome to the Symbolics Lisp Users Group mailing list.

This is an ad hoc mail group to exchange information about the care and
feeding, use and abuse, problems and pitfalls, wonders and crocks of the
Symbolics Lisp machines.

There is also a national users group SLUG, Inc. that is loosely related to,
but distinct from, this mailing list.  Joining one or the other does not
necessarily mean you are in both groups.  Being a member of SLUG, Inc.
does not automatically enroll you in the mailing list.   Joining this
mailing list does not make you a member of SLUG, Inc.  For information
about joining SLUG, Inc., please see the file SLUG-INC.INFO (below) or
ask SLUG-Request to send you a copy.

Mail to the group should be addressed to:

If you have problems, you can also send the mail to

This is a distribution list, and the mail will be forwarded to everyone on the
list.  Requests and questions regarding the list or SLUG, Inc. should be
addressed to:


The distribution list and mail archives will live here at SRI.
Some relevant files for those who care are:

SRI.COM:STRIPE:<SLUG>	SLUG.TXT		;the current mail
			SLUG.*			; older mail (* = 871231, etc)
	      		SLUG-INC.INFO		;Info about SLUG, Inc.

There are miscellaneous LISPM and SLUG related files in the <SLUG>
directory.  You are welcome to FTP any of these files you want.
SRI.COM supports TCP FTP with anonymous login.

If anyone else has on-line notes, tips, or tidbits, we will be glad to
add them to the <SLUG> store.

Your friendly list maintainer,

Mabry Tyson