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Lists: Info for list subscribers including subcribe, unsubscribe, search archives
Information for List Subscribers:


To subscribe, unsubscribe, or change your list settings, follow these instructions:

  1. Go to
  2. Follow the link for List Subscribers.
  3. You will need to login. If you don't already have a LISTSERV password set, go to the Register LISTSERV Password page.
  4. If you would like to change subscription options or for a list you are already subscribed to, click on Subscriber's Corner at the top of the page. You will see the LISTSERV lists you are subscribed to. Next to the list you want to change your subscription options for, click on [Settings].

    If you would like to join a list, click on Email lists at the top. You will see a listing of all public lists. If the list you wish to subscribe to is on this page, click it. Otherwise, scroll to the bottom of the page and in the Access Unlisted Archives: form type in the list name and click on Submit. Then, click on the Join or Leave link.

  5. From this page you are able to change the following options:
    • Subscription Type
    • Mail Header Style
    • Acknowledgements
    • Miscellaneous

Make the changes you desire and then click the appropriate button. More details about these options are available below.

How do I access the e-mail archives for a list for which I am a subscriber?
The list archive consists of all of the notebook logs for a list. To access the archives, go to the LISTSERV system at Follow the link for the Subscriber's Corner to view the lists you are currently subscribed to, and click on the list name to view the archives.

Listserv's new web interface features preferences which allow you to customize how the archives are displayed. To set these preferences, follow the instructions above to access the archives then click on Preferences at the top of the page and select the Archive Preferences tab.

How do I access the RSS feed for a list?
Listserv now features RSS feeds, enabling you to view messages using an RSS reader. Follow the instructions above to access the archives, and then click on the button at the bottom of the page corresponding to the type of RSS feed you want. For more information about RSS, see

How do I send a formatted e-mail message or a message with attachments using LISTSERV?
With the new LISTSERV web interface, you can send messages to a list with paragraph and character formatting using standard HTML code. Go to and select Subscriber's Corner. Click on the list name you want to post to and then select Post New Message.

HTML Code can be added to messages by either uploading an HTML file created outside of LISTSERV or by directly entering HTML code into the text box of the composition window. To upload HTML code, click the Upload HTML button. This will start an applet that will allow you to browse for your HTML file and then automatically upload it. After the upload is complete, your message will be displayed as HTML code in the text box.

To add HTML formatting directly from the composition window, enter the appropriate HTML tags within the content of your e-mail and be sure to select HTML from the Content-Type pull down menu.

Files can now be attached to e-mail messages from the LISTSERV composition window. To attach a file, enter the name of the file or use the "Browse" button to find the file and click the "Attach" button to attach your file to your outgoing message.

Subscription Options
For a more comprehensive reference on all LISTSERV option settings (including how to set options by mail), please see the section on How To Set Your Subscription Options in the General User's Guide to LISTSERV.

Subscription Type

  • Regular

    With a "regular" subscription, you receive individual postings immediately, as they are processed by LISTSERV.

  • Digest (traditional)
  • Digest (MIME format)
  • Digest (HTML format)

    With a "digest" subscription, you receive larger messages (called "digests") at regular intervals, usually once per day or once per week. These "digests" are collections of individual list postings. Some lists are so active that they produce several digests per day.

    Digests are a good compromise between reading everything as it is posted and feeling like the list is clogging your mailbox with a multitude of individual postings.

    There are three digest formats: the "traditional," text-only format; the MIME format which (with mail clients that understand MIME digests) "bursts" the individual messages out of the digest so that you can read them separately; and the HTML format, which requires a mail clients capable of displaying HTML messages.

  • Index (traditional)
  • Index (HTML format)

    With an "index" subscription, you receive short "index" messages at regular intervals, usually once per day or once per week. These "indexes" show you what is being discussed on the list without including the text of the individual postings. For each posting, the date, the author's name and address, the subject of the message and the number of lines is listed. You can then download messages of interest from the server (the index contains instructions on how to do that).

    An index subscription is ideal if you have a slow connection and only read a few hand-picked messages. The indexes are very short and you do not have to worry about long download times. The drawback of course is that you need to reconnect to order messages of interest from the server.

    You can choose to have the index sent to you in either a traditional format (plain text) or in HTML format with hyperlinks.

Mail Header Style

  • Normal LISTSERV-style header

    "Full" mail headers (normally the default), containing Internet routing information, MIME headers, and so forth.

  • LISTSERV-style, with list name in subject

    "Full" mail headers (like the default) except that a "subject tag" is added to the subject line of mail coming from the list. If there is no subject tag defined in the list's configuration, the name of the list will be used. This can be very useful for sorting and filtering mail.

  • "Dual" (second header in mail body)

    Dual headers are regular short headers followed by a second header inside the message body. This second header shows what list the message is coming from ('Sender:'), the name and address of the person who posted it ('Poster:'), the poster's organization, if present, and the message subject. Dual headers are helpful if your mail client does not preserve the original return e-mail address.

  • sendmail-style (advanced option)

    This option selects sendmail-style headers, i.e. an exact copy of the original, incoming mail header with the addition of a 'Received:' line and of a 'Sender:' field. Some technical people prefer this type of header.

  • Normal LISTSERV-style (RFC 822 Compliant) (advanced option)

    These headers are similar to the normal LISTSERV-style header except that Internet routing information and MIME headers are removed.

  • No acknowledgements

    LISTSERV will not send any acknowledgement at all when you post to the list. This is probably not a good setting unless you really do not want any feedback from LISTSERV as to whether or not your posting was received and distributed.

  • Short message confirming receipt

    Typically this is the default setting, although it can be overridden by the list owner. If you choose this setting, LISTSERV will send you a short message whenever you post to the list, confirming the distribution of your message and telling you how many people it was sent to.

  • Receive copy of own postings

    Some people prefer this setting over the short acknowledgement message. It tells LISTSERV to send you a copy of your own postings, so that you can see exactly how it appeared on the list (useful if you are behind an unreliable gateway or firewall).

  • Mail delivery disabled temporarily

    This option toggles the receipt of mail from the list. You may want to disable mail delivery if you will be away from your mail for an extended period of time.

  • Address concealed from REVIEW listing

    This option conceals you from the list of subscribers shown by the REVIEW command. Note that the list owner and the LISTSERV administrator can always get the complete list of subscribers, regardless of this setting. Nowadays, most lists are configured so that only the list owner can use the REVIEW command, but some lists still allow subscribers to get a listing of all the other participants.


For lists with topics enabled (if the Topics: section of the form is not visible, topics are not enabled), this section allows you to subscribe or unsubscribe to all, some, or none of the available topics.

Last Updated:
September 26, 2011

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