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I was having a problem with gdb, and while there issue appears to be recurring, I found only one instance of someone recently experiencing the same problem. I found this other instance on a mailman archived mailing list.

Then I tried some more things and finally solved the issue with gdb. So, now I want to report back the solution I found to the mailing list. However, this is really only of use if mailman recognizes my mail as being the same thread as the original problem, but I do not have that mail (just the online archived version of it) so I cannot reply to it.

My question: How can I make sure mailman considers my mail as a reply to that thread? Is simply copying the topic enough?

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migrated from superuser.com Jan 25 '12 at 18:58

This question came from our site for computer enthusiasts and power users.

up vote 6 down vote accepted

For one thing, even if you do reply to that old message, Mailman will still show your email in the month it was sent. So it's probably not worth the hassle to try replying to a message you don't have. Just send a new email out to the mailing list with your solution (assuming it is topically relevant).

However, for educational purposes: copying the subject won't be enough, because not every message on a mailing list can be expected to have a unique subject. The standard way to indicate that you're replying to a message is through the email header In-Reply-To. The value of that header is taken from the Message-ID header of the message you're replying to. Normally this is done automatically by your email client, but if you use a program that allows you to set custom header fields, you should be able to do it manually. If you go to the list archives of the mailing list in question and click on the "Gzip'd text" link for the month in question, you should get a gzipped text file that includes the Message-ID headers for each email sent that month. Copy the value of the header from the message you're trying to reply to, and add a custom In-Reply-To header with that value to the message you're sending. For instance, if you see

Message-ID: abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz@mail.example.com

in the message you're replying to in the downloaded text file, you should add the custom header

In-Reply-To: abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz@mail.example.com

to the message you're sending, and your message will then be considered a reply to the old message.

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I have already found a thread on mingw-users (the list in question) that spans more than a single month, yet is recognized as a single thread in the archives: sourceforge.net/mailarchive/…. This means your first comment seems not of interest for this mailing list. – Jasper May 18 '10 at 2:54
The reason that I want to post it as a reply to that thread is because the problem exists only for a very specific subset of the users (mingw users under x64 windows) and because the question is already a top result in google, it would be a pity if the problem without solution came up higher in searches, while the solution was provided right there. – Jasper May 18 '10 at 2:55
As for your solution, I am using gmail that does not allow me to specify a custom in-reply-to header, but there are ways around that. However, I can't seem to find any message-ID header in the archive (lists-archives.org/mingw-users/…) but it seems that there is no way around that, so I guess there is simply nothing I can do except copying the topic/ – Jasper May 18 '10 at 2:59
ah, see that link would have been useful. I was basing my answer on a standard Mailman installation (e.g. python-list) but Sourceforge's installation of Mailman is heavily customized. I can't find any way to access the Message-ID header either. – David Z May 18 '10 at 6:55
Just a tip for anyone coming across this: by using the Gmail API explorer you can manually craft your own raw emails, including whatever header you feel like. Write your email, base64url encode it, and add it to the "raw" property in the explorer: developers.google.com/gmail/api/v1/reference/users/messages/… – oligofren Dec 11 '15 at 10:34

According to http://lists.sugarlabs.org/archive/fourthgrademath/2009-September/000337.html

Notice, on the archived message, there's a link for [the author's] spam-safe email address? That link is actually an HTML mailto link. Clicking it will create a new message to the list with a matching subject line.

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It's interesting, but it doesn't really seem to hav to do much with my question... – Jasper Aug 2 '13 at 19:22

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