The email situation and plan?

Gary Kramlich grim at
Tue Oct 18 17:52:36 EDT 2022

So yeah.. Another quarter and email isn't done.. Sorry this has taken
so long, it's just difficult and complicated.. That said, I was
talking to Robby O'Conner (r0bby from #pidgin) and he's in charge of
the infrastructure for librehealth[1] and he mentioned that they use
mailgun[2] for their email.

Mailgun doesn't have an Open Source plan, which means we'd need to pay
for it. It does support both incoming routing rules (it looks like for
multiple domains but I need to confirm) as well email forwarding and
even a REST API if we need that for some reason. The price for 10,000
emails a month (their lowest plan) is $35 per month, which would be
about $420 USD a year. This seems like an obvious no-brainer to me as
supporting, securing, and maintaining an email system is no simple
task and we can make it not our problem for less than $500 USD a year.

So my plan, with the board's approval, is to roll out Discourse[3] on
a DigitalOcean node, import the mailman users lists into it, and
create spaces for Pidgin, Finch, Purple, GNT, and IMFreedom on it with
appropriate threads and stuff to replace our existing mailing lists.
We would then point Discourse to the current email server that Richard
has patiently been hosting as I try to get this all figured out. Once
that move is complete, we would then replace the email server with
mailgun and finally move past this.

I need to verify a few things yet, like confirming that mailgun does
support multiple domains, how robust their incoming filters are, and
testing the user import from mailman into Discourse.

When it comes to the existing archives, the easiest solution is to
just dump them in a container with pipermail and serve them at the
existing URLs, but I'd really like to not have to require that old
version of mailman to get pipermail. So if anyone knows of another
solution, including just rendering it all out to static HTML please
let me know.

Also, as a side note, I will be looking for employment soon as I'm
running out of funds, so if the board would like to pay me to do this
stuff, that would be very cool but of course not expected.



Gary Kramlich <grim at>

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