Top Performance in 2012: Checklists for L-Soft Customers
With the start of the new year upon us, it's a great time to gear up for a new year of opt-in email list communication with L-Soft's solutions. Whether you're running LISTSERV or LISTSERV Maestro, licensed or hosted, you want to get the best possible performance and results from your email list solutions. Be sure to check out the to-do checklist and resources from two of L-Soft's experts, one from technical support and one from training and consulting, to help you do just that.
If your lists are running on LISTSERV
1. Make sure your anti-virus protection is up-to-date
If you're relying on LISTSERV's built-in F-Secure Anti-Virus protection, keep in mind that F-Secure Anti-Virus (FSAV) versions 7 and 8 will reach end of life on December 31, 2011. After this date, F-Secure will no longer distribute virus signature updates for these old versions. F-Secure Anti-Virus version 9 is a free upgrade for customers with an L-Soft maintenance contract and can be downloaded at:
2. Stop spam from ever getting to LISTSERV
Recent versions of LISTSERV for Windows have allowed the LISTSERV SMTP Listener (which accepts incoming mail and delivers it to LISTSERV) to use a local SpamAssassin installation to see whether incoming mail is likely to be spam. Using this feature means that LISTSERV won't have to waste time processing any spam that SpamAssassin intercepts and that your list owners and moderators won't be bothered by the blowback from spam being sent to LISTSERV. Information about this feature can be found in Section 5 of the LISTSERV Advanced Topics Manual:
3. Be certain that your licenses are up-to-date
In recent LISTSERV versions, you can do this by going under "Server Administration" to "Server Dashboard" and looking under "License Information". The "Version" field should say 16.0, and if you have a maintenance contract with L-Soft, then the "Maintenance Until" field should be a date in the future. Finally, there should be a green shield with a check mark at the bottom of this area and in the "Technical Support" area. If any of these things are not the case, then contact support or your sales representative at:
4. Consider participating in training classes
If you feel that you haven't been getting the most out of your LISTSERV installation, or if there are LISTSERV features that you have heard of but haven't had time to educate yourself about, then perhaps you would find a training class useful. Information about the available classes and their costs can be found at:
5. Check out our technical support discussion lists
L-Soft hosts several discussion lists for our customers and users of our solutions on our peach.ease.lsoft.com server:
LSTSRV-L – for site administrators
LSTOWN-L – for list owners
LISTSERV-LITE – for LISTSERV Lite users
LISTSERV-DEVELOPERS – for customers using some of the more advanced features in LISTSERV, such as TCPGUI and list exits
These mailing lists are a great forum to share experiences and advice and to allow our customers to help each other. Go through the archives or post a note of your own and get a discussion going. The available technical support discussion lists can be found at:
6. Explore your web interface preferences
If you haven't ever explored your LISTSERV web interface preferences, why not do it now? Log into the web interface and click on "Preferences" in the upper right-hand corner. You might, for instance, want to change your Mode. The default is "Basic Mode", but changing to "Expert Mode" will result in some additional options becoming visible on some screens, and picking "Tutorial Mode" will result in additional help text being displayed on many screens.
If you frequently find yourself changing things like the way posts are sorted in the archives, or the amount of time covered by activity reports, clicking on the "Archive Preferences" and "Report Preferences" tabs will reveal many customization options.
On all of the preference screens (and many other pages of the web interface as well), you can click on the question mark icon next to any item to get more information about it.
If your lists are running on LISTSERV Maestro
1. Revisit your backup strategy
By default, LISTSERV Maestro makes a nightly backup of its data and keeps backups for seven days. Make sure that you're copying those backups to an off-site location in case of a disaster.
2. Configure notifications in the LISTSERV Maestro Administration HUB
LISTSERV Maestro can notify you of successful (or failed) backups, as well as notify you of any critical system errors.
3. Archive old mail jobs, and set up auto-archiving in the LISTSERV Maestro Administration HUB
By default, mail jobs are retained in LISTSERV Maestro indefinitely. To boost system performance, log in to the LISTSERV Maestro User Interface (LUI) as "admin" and archive old mail jobs that are no longer needed. From the LISTSERV Maestro Administration HUB, configure LISTSERV Maestro to auto-archive old jobs after a set number of days. You may retrieve archived jobs at any time, but moving them to the archive will speed up many LISTSERV Maestro operations.
4. Revisit your log file retention policies
By default, LISTSERV Maestro log files are retained indefinitely. Consider putting a script in place to compress or delete old log files on a regular basis in order to preserve storage space.
LISTSERV Maestro has frequent updates, including bug fixes and new features, so it's a good idea to double-check and make sure that you have the latest version. You can always see the latest version at:
5. Simplify your team collaboration process
If you find yourself assigning the same team collaboration rights to the same users over and over again, you can automate this as follows:
1. Log into the LISTSERV Maestro User Interface.
2. Go under "Preferences" > "Mail Jobs" > "New Mail Job".
3. Under "Default Team Collaboration", click on "Edit".
4. Select the options you want new jobs to have by default.
5. Click on "OK".
6. Click on "OK" again. (Skipping this step will result in your changes not being saved.)
Note that changing the default team collaboration settings don't affect jobs that you have already created. However, any new jobs that you create will have the team collaboration setup you specified.
If your lists are hosted with ListPlex
1. Update your administrators
When someone leaves your organization, or is reassigned to new duties, they should be removed as a list owner or editor from any mailing lists that they administer. Just to make sure that this hasn't fallen through the cracks, it's not a bad idea to occasionally check your lists' configurations to make sure that everyone who is currently an administrator is supposed to be. Fortunately, in recent LISTSERV versions it's easy to generate a report of the current list owners as follows:
1. Go under "List Management" to "List Reports".
2. Under "Report Columns", click "Uncheck All", then select "Owners", "Editors" and "Moderators".
3. You can view the report on-screen, or if desired, you can export it to a CSV file that you can open in Microsoft Excel or a similar program. Select the option that you want under "Report Format".
4. Click on "Search", and the report will be generated.
If you're concerned about a particular person, you can type their email address next to "Show Lists Owned By", and only lists owned by that particular email address will be displayed.
For everyone running an L-Soft solution
Make sure that you're subscribed to the "L-Soft Product Updates" list for your particular solution. You can find the L-Soft Opt-In Center at:
Subscribe to LISTSERV at Work.