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GPCA IT Group Service Information

The Green Party of California uses the network services of the Green Internet Society (Cameron Spitzer). This information page was written from his experiences in maintaining our system.

Please read this list of common questions and guidelines if you are requesting any of these services or help:


This is what the different requesters need to answer before
their request will be considered "valid" or complete or unambiguous.

1. I want an email address.

a.  what address?  If it's greens.org, could this person
make do with cagreens.org?
b.  Is it a common first name?  Does it reveal the owner's gender?
Those addresses are usually unacceptable because they're unfair
to future volunteers with the same first name, and female sounding
first names attract harrassers.  Also common first names are easily
guessed by spam robots, and once they seem valid they get spam
forever.
c.  Is someone already using it?
d.  Does it preempt a likely name for a listserve, candidate office,
or local?
e.  Is this person doing Green work?  Are they likely to misuse it?
Pseudonyms are a bad sign.  Someone who insists their real name is
"Internal Exile" or "Seabob" is probably a troublemaker.
We probably need a policy here.  We can't hand out 150,000
cagreens.org forwarding aliases.  Maybe this particular requester
should check out mailshell.com instead.


2.  I want a mailbox.

I don't have a separate "mailbox only" account.  If you have a
user account on petra-k, you can make a mailbox (or we have to
convert your default forwarding to a mailbox for you) if you
want.  You also get "personal" Web server space and a shell.
Most people who ask for a "mailbox" should be convinced to
store mail on their ISP account (or mailshell.com...) and use
a cagreens.org forwarding alias.
3. I want "access to the Web site"
a.  What "web site"?  A new directory for a new local under
http://cagreens.org/ ?
b.  Is this an additional volunteer to maintain stuff we
already have?  Do the current maintainers know this person?
Have the "current maintainers" wandered away?
c.  Is this person known to the leadership of whatever
organization they claim to be volunteering for?  Did they
cc their request to those people?  Did those people say okay?
d.  Did this person read and understand the usage policy posted
at http://cagreens.org/it/accounts/ ?
Did they agree to it?  Did they identify themselves adequately?
Are they known kooks or liars?  Or felons?
e.  Does this person have a clear idea of what they want to
do with the account?
f.  Do they want something we don't do?  (Microsoft Front Page
Server Extensions, Microsoft Advanced Server Pages, Cold Fusion,
Squishdot, Zope...)?
g.  Have they obtained an SSH2 client? (Try http://winscp.vse.cz/eng/)
I have shut down FTP access due to recent problems caused by
this unsecure protocol!

4. The mailing list isn't working.

a.  *which* mailing list?
b.  are you posting to the right address?
c.  is there a bounce message or do your messages just vanish?
d.  from where are you sending?  (is it on a spam block list?)
e.  are you a subscriber?  do you send with your subscription
address in your From: line?
f.  Has that list been abandoned or closed down?
 


5. I want a domain name for my local

a.  Please read http://web.greens.org/about/domains.html (again)
b.  Are you sure?  How about http://cagreens.org/yourlocal ?
c.  Do you have truly reliable contact info for registrant
and admin contact?
d.  Is there some reason you need it to be on petra-k?
(associated list servers or email tricks?)
 


6.  I already registered a domain name for my local, make it work!

a.  Did you delegate the name service to us?
Currently the name servers are cesarchavez.cagreens.org
and amybiehl.greens.org.  This will change over time.
b.  Did you buy Web or email forwarding from your registrar (oops)
c.  Did you use an ICANN-accredited registrar?  After the fiasco
with Hostica I want to make that a requirement.
d.  Are your registered contacts appropriate and valid?
e.  do you need URL forwarding from http://cagreens.org/someplace ?

7.  I can't upload files to our Web site

a.  Are you trying to use FTP from (campus, broadband, screwy ISP)?
please try SSH2.
b.  You uploaded your files to your home directory.
Please move them to your project directory.
c.  Are you using the right hostname and password?
d.  I never heard of you before, please go back to "Get an account."
e.  Your other team members have turned off group-write on the
directory or file you are trying to write.
Have they wandered off?
Please help them fix the settings in WinSCP2
or run a "chmod -v g+w" command from the shell.

8.  My domain name is registered to Joe Flake and he has wandered off.

a.  It sucks to be you.
b.  Please *try* to contact Joe and get the account information
for the account at the Registrar that controls this name.
c.  (Joe is gone)  Please contact that Registrar/ follow the
instructions at that Registrar for recovering control of the
account.  You may have to prove you represent the Registrant.
You may need notarized documents.  This is a good thing, you don't
want Jane Angry Democrat hijacking your name.

9.  I want a "list serve"

a.  Proposed name and topic?
b.  Who will nanny?  Do they realize what they're committing to?
c.  Is there already a list about that?
d.  Is it for both news and discuss, you may need two, it's
hard to split them later.
e.  Is there a sign-up sheet with addresses to preload?
f.  That name is too vague, please pick a more specific one.
g.  That's the name of the county contact address, please use
a name with a dash in it instead, it's traditional.
h.  If this is for your local or WG, do they know you're doing it?
Are you self-appointed or elected?  Please CC the co-chairs
with your reply

10.  Which lists won't accept attachments?

Many of our lists are run by the Mailman program. Mailman does
not allow you to attach a file to a message. It tries to read the file and
incorporate it into the body of the message. There are also logistical
reasons why attachments are not a good idea on a mass distribution list.
It's better to place the attachment on a server, then provide a link to
it in the list message thus allowing those interested to download the file.

Here is a list of GPCA lists on Mailman.

We also operate a few lists run by the Majordomo program. Majordomo will
allow attachments, but it is a serious security risk to send attachments on
any list. Accordingly, the following Majordomo lists have been configured
to not allow attachments:

   gpca-cc
   gpca-intlp
   gpca-sttst
   gpca-wpj

Also many other lists whose names don't start with gpca, such as grns-cal-forum.

These lists will bounce a message that has a "Content-Type: multipart\/related;"
or "Content-Type: multipart\/mixed;" header line. That header line appears in
messages with attached files, including various email worms. It also appears in
messages that are formatted as Web pages.

This mechanism stops email worms.

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