Mailing List Managers

9 Best Free and Open Source Mailing List Managers

An electronic mailing list offers the ability to efficiently distribute information to many internet users. It is similar in some ways to a traditional mailing list.

Electronic mailing lists are normally automated using dedicated mailing software and a reflector address. Mailing lists are often used as a two-way method of discussion between interested parties, or a one-way dissemination of information where only selected individuals can make posts.

Mailing lists provide a popular method of information exchange for both Linux developers and users. For example, the Linux kernel mailing list gets a high volume of traffic, acting as a focal point for sharing patches, discussing implementation details, reporting bugs, and new features. Many prominent companies participate in these discussions including Intel, IBM, Oracle, and VMware.

Mailing list software enables users to manage electronic mail discussion and e-newsletter lists. There is a good range of mature open source mailing list software available for the Linux platform.

Spammers unfortunately try to obtain the lists of subscribers to mailing lists. Good mailing list software seeks to thwart the spammers’ activities. Mailing lists can accept email from non-subscribers. To prevent spam being posted to subscribers, mailing list servers employ layers of spam blocking and filtering.

To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled a list of 9 valuable open source mailing list managers. All of these tools are released under a freely distributable license. Here’s our verdict.

Rating chart for Mailing List Managers


Let’s explore the 9 mailing list managers at hand. For each application we have compiled its own portal page, a full description with an in-depth analysis of its features, together with links to relevant resources.

Mailing List Managers
MailmanManage electronic mail discussion and e-newsletter lists. Python-based
SympaScalable and highly customizable modern mailing list manager
listmonkSelf-hosted newsletter and mailing list manager
DiscourseCapable mailing list, and long-form chat room
schleuderGroup’s email-gateway
ezmlm-idxHighly automated mailing list manager
Dada MailMature and intuitive web-based e-mail list management system
MajordomoPerl based mailing list manager
ulistMailing list service that keeps it simple
Best Free and Open Source SoftwareRead our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.

The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.

There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.
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