Difference: MailerContrib (4 vs. 5)

Revision 52008-01-22 - TWikiContributor

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MailerContrib

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Mailer Contrib

 
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Add-on to the TWiki kernel that allows users to "subscribe" to regularly scheduled e-mails containing either:
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Allows users to "subscribe" to regularly scheduled e-mails containing either:
 
  • A report on changes to all topics that have changed within a particular TWiki web.
  • A report on changes to a specific topic or set of topics the user can define flexibly.
  • The entire content of a specific topic or set of topics. This is referred to as "news mode."
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WARNING: TWiki-4 only. If you want to use this extension with an earlier version of TWiki, please see here
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WARNING: TWiki-4 only. If you want to use this extension with an earlier version of TWiki, please use revision 17 of the zip.
 
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tools/mailnotify

The central component of MailerContrib is a script, tools/mailnotify, that generates and sends out the emails based on analysis of
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tools/mailnotify

The central component of MailerContrib is a script, tools/mailnotify, that generates and sends out the emails based on analysis of
 
  1. users' subcriptions listed in the WebNotify topic in each web, and
  2. changes within the respective webs.
This script is designed to be run from cron (or an equivalent off-line job scheduler), or from the command-line.
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 Each web can optionally contain a topic called WebNotify.
<-- Included by WebChangesAlert -->
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Users subscribe to email notifications using their WikiName or an alternative email address, and can specify the webs/topics they wish to track using one of these bullet list formats:
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Users subscribe to email notifications using their WikiName or an alternative email address, and can specify the webs/topics they wish to track, WWhole groups of users can also be subscribed for notification.
 
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three spaces * [ webname . ] wikiName - SMTP mail address
three spaces * [ webName . ] wikiName
three spaces * SMTP mail address
three spaces * SMTP mail address : topics
three spaces * [ webname . ] wikiName : topics

In the above examples, topics is a space-separated list of topic names. The user may further customize the specific content they will receive using the following formats:

  • Specify topics without a Web. prefix
  • Topics must exist in this web.
  • Topics may be specified using * wildcards
  • Each topic may optionally be preceded by a '+' or '-' sign. The '+' sign means "subscribe to this topic" (the same as not putting anything). The '-' sign means "unsubscribe" or "don't send notifications regarding this topic". This allows users to elect to filter out certain topics (and their children, to an arbitrary depth). Topic filters ('-') take precedence over topic includes ('+').
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The general format of a subscription is:

three spaces * subscriber [ : topics ]

Where subscriber can be a WikiName, an E-mail address, or a group name. If subscriber contains any characters that are not legal in an email address, then it must be enclosed in 'single' or "double" quotes.

topics is an optional space-separated list of topics:

  • ... without a Web. prefix
  • ...that exist in this web.
Users may further customize the specific content they will receive using the following controls:
  • You can use * in a topic name, where it is treated as a wildcard character. A * will match zero or more other characters - so, for example, Fred* will match all topic names starting with Fred, *Fred will match all topic names ending with Fred, and * will match all topic names.
  • Each topic may optionally be preceded by a '+' or '-' sign. The '+' sign means "subscribe to this topic". The '-' sign means "unsubscribe" or "don't send notifications regarding this particular topic". This allows users to elect to filter out certain topics. Topic filters ('-') take precedence over topic includes ('+') i.e. if you unsubscribe from a topic it will cancel out any subscriptions to that topic.
 
  • Each topic may optionally be followed by an integer in parentheses, indicating the depth of the tree of children below that topic. Changes in all these children will be detected and reported along with changes to the topic itself. Note This uses the TWiki "Topic parent" feature.
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  • Each topic may optionally be immediately followed by an exclamation mark ! or a question mark ? with no intervening spaces, indicating that the topic (and children if there is a tree depth specifier as well) should be mailed out as complete topics instead of change summaries. ! causes the topic to be mailed every time even if there have been no changes, ? will mail the topic only if there have been changes to it. This only makes sense for subscriptions.
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  • Each topic may optionally be immediately followed by an exclamation mark ! or a question mark ? with no intervening spaces, indicating that the topic (and children if there is a tree depth specifier as well) should be mailed out as complete topics instead of change summaries. ! causes the topic to be mailed every time even if there have been no changes, and ? will mail the topic only if there have been changes to it. This only makes sense for subscriptions, and is intended for mailshotting regular newletters.
  For example: Subscribe Daisy to all changes to topics in this web.
   * daisy.cutter@flowers.com
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Subscribe Daisy to all changes in all webs that start with Web.
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Subscribe Daisy to all changes to topics that start with Web.
 
   * daisy.cutter@flowers.com: Web*
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Subscribe IT:admins (a non-TWiki group defined by an alternate user mapping) to all changes to Web* topics.
   * 'IT:admins' : Web*
 A user may be listed many times in the WebNotify topic. Where a user has several lines in WebNotify that all match the same topic, they will only be notified about changes that topic once (though they will still receive individual mails for news topics).
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If a TWiki group is listed for notification, the group will be recursively expanded to the e-mail addresses of all members.
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If a group is listed for notification, the group will be recursively expanded to the e-mail addresses of all members.

__ALERT! Warning: Because an email address is not linked to a user name, there is no way for TWiki to check access controls for email addresses. A user identified by an email address will only be sent change notifications if the topic they are asubscribed to is readable by guest users. You can limit what email addresses can be used in WebNotify, or even block use of emails altogther, using the {MailerContrib}{EmailFilterIn} setting in =configure.

  TIP Tip: List names in alphabetical order to make it easier to find the names.

In the future it is intended that individual users will be able to control the frequency with which they are notified of topic changes, by changing a schedule specification in their home topic. However at present, the notification schedule is controlled by the frequency of activation of the cron job that runs the mailnotify script.

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Note mailnotify ignores permissions in webs. It is entirely possible for a user to get added to one of the subscription topics in a web, when they are not authorised to view the topics in that web. This could result in them having access to sensitive information, particularly with news mode.

Note that when using the "news mode" ! or ? specifiers are used the entire topic text is mailed out as HTML. The newsletter template is used to generate the content in this mail, using whatever skin is selected in the topic being mailed.

In addition, the %STARTPUBLISH% and %STOPPUBLISH% markers used by TWiki:Plugins.PublishContrib to delimit the text to be published are respected.

TWiki/Contrib/MailerContrib code library

The second part of the module is a code library that provides the services for other applications to modify the subscription topics through a clean, well documented API. This allows (for example) plugin developers to add (for example) a "Register me for this newsletter" button to their pages. The main interface is the WebNotify package described below.

package TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::WebNotify

Object that represents the contents of a WebNotify topic in a TWiki web

ClassMethod new($web, $topic)

Create a new object by parsing the content of the given topic in the given web. This is the normal way to load a WebNotify topic. If the topic does not exist, it will create an empty object.

ObjectMethod writeWebNotify()

Write the object to the WebNotify topic it was read from. If there is a problem writing the topic (e.g. it is locked), the method will return an error message. If everything is ok it will return undef.

ObjectMethod getSubscriber($name, $noAdd)

  • $name - Name of subscriber (wikiname with no web or email address)
  • $noAdd - If false or undef, a new subscriber will be created for this name
Get a subscriber from the list of subscribers, and return a reference to the Subscriber object. If $noAdd is true, and the subscriber is not found, undef will be returned. Otherwise a new Subscriber object will be added if necessary.

ObjectMethod getSubscribers()

Get a list of all subscriber names (unsorted)

ObjectMethod subscribe($name, $topics, $depth)

  • $name - Name of subscriber (wikiname with no web or email address)
  • $topics - wildcard expression giving topics to subscribe to
  • $depth - Child depth to scan (default 0)
  • $mode - ! if this is a non-changes subscription and the topics should be mailed evebn if there are no changes. ? to mail the full topic only if there are changes. undef to mail changes only.
Add a subscription, adding the subscriber if necessary.

ObjectMethod unsubscribe($name, $topics, $depth)

  • $name - Name of subscriber (wikiname with no web or email address)
  • $topics - wildcard expression giving topics to subscribe to
  • $depth - Child depth to scan (default 0)
Add an unsubscription, adding the subscriber if necessary. An unsubscription is a specific request to ignore notifications for a topic for this particular subscriber.

ObjectMethod stringify() -> string

Return a string representation of this object, in WebNotify format.

ObjectMethod processChange($change, $db, $changeSet, $seenSet, $allSet)

  • $change - ref of a TWiki::Contrib::Mailer::Change
  • $db - TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::UpData database of parent references
  • $changeSet - ref of a hash mapping emails to sets of changes
  • $seenSet - ref of a hash recording indices of topics already seen
  • $allSet - ref of a hash that maps topics to email addresses for news subscriptions
Find all subscribers that are interested in the given change. Only the most recent change to each topic listed in the .changes file is retained. This method does not change this object.

ObjectMethod processCompulsory($topic, $db, \%allSet)

  • $topic - topic name
  • $db - TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::UpData database of parent references
  • \%allSet - ref of a hash that maps topics to email addresses for news subscriptions

ObjectMethod isEmpty() -> boolean

Return true if there are no subscribers

package TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::Subscriber

Object that represents a subscriber to notification. A subscriber is a name (which may be a wikiName or an email address) and a list of subscriptions which describe the topis subscribed to, and unsubscriptions representing topics they are specifically not interested in. The subscriber name may also be a group, so it may expand to many email addresses.

ClassMethod new($name)

  • $name - Wikiname, with no web, or email address, of user targeted for notification
Create a new user.

ObjectMethod getEmailAddresses() -> list

Get a list of email addresses for the user(s) represented by this subscription

ObjectMethod subscribe($subs)

  • $subs - Subscription object
Add a new subscription to this subscriber object. The subscription will always be added, even if there is a wildcard overlap with an existing subscription.

ObjectMethod unsubscribe($subs)

  • $subs - Subscription object
Add a new unsubscription to this subscriber object. The unsubscription will always be added, even if there is a wildcard overlap with an existing subscription or unsubscription.

An unsubscription is a statement of the subscribers desire not to be notified of changes to this topic.

ObjectMethod isSubscribedTo($topic) -> $subscription

  • $topic - Topic object we are checking
  • $db - TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::UpData database of parents
Check if we have a subscription to the given topic. Return the subscription that matches if we do, undef otherwise.

ObjectMethod isUnsubscribedFrom($topic) -> $subscription

  • $topic - Topic object we are checking
  • $db - TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::UpData database of parents
Check if we have an unsubscription from the given topic. Return the subscription that matches if we do, undef otherwise.
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Note that when using the "news mode" ! or ? specifiers the entire topic text is mailed out as HTML. The newsletter template is used to generate the content in this mail, using whatever skin is selected in the topic being mailed.
 
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In addition, the %STARTPUBLISH% and %STOPPUBLISH% markers used by TWiki:Plugins.PublishContrib to delimit the text to be published are respected in news mode.
 
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ObjectMethod stringify() -> string

Return a string representation of this object, in WebNotify format.
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TWiki/Contrib/MailerContrib code library

The second part of the module is a code library that provides the services for other applications to modify the subscription topics through a clean, well documented API. This allows (for example) plugin developers to add (for example) a "Register me for this newsletter" button to their pages. Developers should refer to the POD documentation for the WebNotify class as their starting point.
 
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package TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::Subscription

Object that represents a single subscription of a user to notification on a page. A subscription is expressed as a page spec (which may contain wildcards) and a depth of children of matching pages that the user is subscribed to.

ClassMethod new($pages, $childDepth, $news)

  • $pages - Wildcarded expression matching subscribed pages
  • $childDepth - Depth of children of $topic to notify changes for. Defaults to 0
  • $mode - ! if this is a non-changes subscription and the topics should be mailed evebn if there are no changes. ? to mail the full topic only if there are changes. undef to mail changes only.
Create a new subscription.

ObjectMethod stringify() -> string

Return a string representation of this object, in WebNotify format.

ObjectMethod matches($topic, $db, $depth) -> boolean

  • $topic - Topic object we are checking
  • $db - TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::UpData database of parent names
  • $depth - If non-zero, check if the parent of the given topic matches as well. undef = 0.
Check if we match this topic. Recurses up the parenthood tree seeing if this is a child of a parent that matches within the depth range.

ObjectMethod getMode() -> $mode

Return ! if this is a non-changes subscription and the topics should be mailed even if there are no changes. ? to mail the full topic only if there are changes. undef to mail changes only.


package TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::Change

Object that represents a change to a topic.

ClassMethod new($web)

  • $web - Web name
  • $topic - Topic name
  • $author - String author of change
  • $time - String time of change
  • $rev - Revision identifier
Construct a new change object.

ObjectMethod merge($change)

  • $change - Change record to merge
Merge another change record with this one, so that the combined record is a reflection of both changes.

ObjectMethod expandHTML($html) -> string

  • $html - Template to expand keys within
Expand an HTML template using the values in this change. The following keys are expanded: %TOPICNAME%, %AUTHOR%, %TIME%, %REVISION%, %TEXTHEAD%.

Returns the expanded template.

ObjectMethod expandPlain() -> string

Generate a plaintext version of this change.

package TWiki::Contrib::MailerContrib::UpData

Object that lazy-scans topics to extract parent relationships.

ClassMethod new($web)

  • $web - Web we are building parent relationships for
Constructor for a web; initially empty, will lazy-load as topics are referenced.

ObjectMethod getParent($topic) -> string

Get the name of the parent topic of the given topic

package TWiki::Contrib::Mailer

Package of support for extended WebNotify notification, supporting per-topic notification and notification of changes to children.

Also supported is a simple API that can be used to change the WebNotify topic from other code.

StaticMethod mailNotify($webs, $session, $verbose)

  • $webs - filter list of names webs to process. Wildcards (*) may be used.
  • $session - optional session object. If not given, will use a local object.
  • $verbose - true to get verbose (debug) output

Main entry point.

Process the WebNotify topics in each web and generate and issue notification mails. Designed to be invoked from the command line; should only be called by mailnotify scripts.

Installation Instructions

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Installation Instructions

 You do not need to install anything in the browser to use this extension. The following instructions are for the administrator who installs the extension on the server where TWiki is running.
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Like many other TWiki extensions, this module is shipped with a fully automatic installer script written using the BuildContrib.
  • If you have TWiki 4.1 or later, and Perl 5.8, you can install from the configure interface (Go to Plugins->Find More Extensions)
    • The webserver user has to have permission to write to all areas of your installation for this to work.
  • If you have a permanent connection to the internet (and Perl 5.8), you are recommended to use the automatic installer script
    • Just download the MailerContrib_installer perl script and run it.
  • Notes:
    • The installer script will:
      • Automatically resolve dependencies,
      • Copy files into the right places in your local install (even if you have renamed data directories),
      • check in new versions of any installed files that have existing RCS histories files in your existing install (such as topics).
      • If the $TWIKI_PACKAGES environment variable is set to point to a directory, the installer will try to get archives from there. Otherwise it will try to download from twiki.org or cpan.org, as appropriate.
      • (Developers only: the script will look for twikiplugins/MailerContrib/MailerContrib.tgz before downloading from TWiki.org)
    • If you don't have a permanent connection, you can still use the automatic installer, by downloading all required TWiki archives to a local directory.
      • Point the environment variable $TWIKI_PACKAGES to this directory, and the installer script will look there first for required TWiki packages.
        • $TWIKI_PACKAGES is actually a path; you can list several directories separated by :
      • If you are behind a firewall that blocks access to CPAN, you can build a local CPAN mini-mirror, as described at http://twiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Codev/BuildingDakar#CPAN_local_minimirror
  • If you don't want to use the installer script, or have problems on your platform (e.g. you don't have Perl 5.8), then you can still install manually:
    1. Download and unpack one of the .zip or .tgz archives to a temporary directory.
    2. Manually copy the contents across to the relevant places in your TWiki installation.
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Like many other TWiki extensions, this module is shipped with a fully automatic installer script written using the BuildContrib.
  • If you have TWiki 4.2 or later, you can install from the configure interface (Go to Plugins->Find More Extensions)
  • If you have any problems, then you can still install manually from the command-line:
    1. Download one of the .zip or .tgz archives
    2. Unpack the archive in the root directory of your TWiki installation.
    3. Run the installer script ( perl <module>_installer )
    4. Run configure and enable the module, if it is a plugin.
    5. Repeat for any missing dependencies.
  • If you are still having problems, then instead of running the installer script:
    1. Make sure that the file permissions allow the webserver user to access all files.
 
    1. Check in any installed files that have existing ,v files in your existing install (take care not to lock the files when you check in)
    2. Manually edit LocalSite.cfg to set any configuration variables.
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    1. Run configure and enable the module, if it is a plugin.
    2. Repeat from step 1 for any missing dependencies.
 
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  • To make sure the installation was successful, run the mailnotify script from the command line, with no parameters. In this case it will print out what it would have done to STDOUT.
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  • To make sure the installation was successful, run the mailnotify script from the command line, with no parameters. In this case it will print out what it would have done to STDOUT.
Additional settings
  • You can change the regular expression that matches email addresses in WebNotify using the {MailerContrib}{EmailFilterIn} setting in =configure. This allows you to limit the domains to which emails can be sent, or even block email addresses altogether.
 
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Setting up your cron job(s)

You need to set up a cron (or equivalent) job to run tools/mailnotify.
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Setting up your cron job(s)

You need to set up a cron (or equivalent) job to run the tools/mailnotify perl script.
 
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Usage: perl -I <bin> mailnotify [-q] [-news] [ web1 web2 ... webN ] <bin> is the path to the TWiki bin directory, so that the script can find the rest of TWiki.
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The script is used as follows: perl -I bin mailnotify [-q] [-news] [ web1 web2 ... webN ]
bin path to the TWiki bin directory, so that the script can find the rest of TWiki.
 
-q Don't print progress information
-news Run in news mode (process NewsNotify instead of WebNotify)
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web1 web2 ... webN List of webs to process, separated by spaces or commas. Default is to process all legal TWiki webs. Wildcards (*) are supported.
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web1 web2 ... webN List of webs to process, separated by spaces or commas. The default is to process all webs. Wildcards (*) are supported.
 For example, assuming TWiki was installed at /usr/local/twiki, this cron entry:
0 0 * * * cd /usr/local/twiki && perl -I bin tools/mailnotify -q Public Private
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will generate change notifications for the Public and Private webs every night at midnight.
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will generate change notifications for the Public and Private webs every night at midnight. (Google for crontab for more information on what all the 0 0 * * * fields mean)
0 0 * * * cd /usr/local/twiki && perl -I bin tools/mailnotify -q -Sandbox
will generate change notifications for all webs, except the Sandbox web.
 
0 0 * * 0 cd /usr/local/twiki && perl -I bin tools/mailnotify -news
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  • Set STUB = TWiki::Contrib::Mailer
  • Set SHORTDESCRIPTION = Supports e-mail notification of changes.
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Developer Notes

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Developer Notes

 The changes mails sent to users are based on a TWiki template called mailnotify. This template must contain the following definitions.
HTML:before Section of a HTML mail before the changes
HTML:middle Repeated in a HTML mail for each change
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  Newsletters are sent after formatting using the standard view template, using whatever skin is selected in the topic being mailed.
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Contrib Info

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Contrib Info

Another great TWiki extension from the WikiRing - working together to improve your wiki experience!

Many thanks to the following sponsors for supporting this work:

 
Author: TWiki:Main/CrawfordCurrie (http://c-dot.co.uk)
Copyright ©: 2004, Wind River Systems; 2006, http://WikiRing.com
License: GPL
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Version: 16078 (22 Jan 2008)
 
Change History:  
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2 Nov 2007 Bugs:Item4818: added quotes to support non-alphabetic and other wierd group names Bugs:Item4887: corrected minor rendering error Bugs:Item4917: removed dependence on symbolic web names
9 Sep 2007 Bugs:Item4326 workaround for possible error in WebNotify API in old releases, Should not affect most users.
6 Sep 2007 Bugs:Item4488 doc tweaks
14550 Bugs:Item4461 - 'Changed' link now points to most recent changes, not the entire history
22 Jun 2007 Bugs:Item4284 - added access control checks and email filter
21 May 2007 Bugs:Item3969 - 8bit email fix (TWiki:Main.WillNorris)
13623 Bugs:Item4014 no changes was resetting the notify time to 0. Thanks to TWiki:Main.JeffCrawford for nailing this down.
 
12496 Item3415 mailnotify did not send notifications to intranet users because of wrong call to findUser.
11672 Added newsletter support, after much harassment from TWiki:Main.LynnwoodBrown
11534 Item2153 Clarified docs. Item2698 Improved error reporting.
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Feedback: TWiki:Plugins/MailerContribDev
Appraisal: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/MailerContribAppraisal
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META FILEATTACHMENT attr="h" comment="" name="wikiringlogo20x20.png" version="1"
META FILEATTACHMENT attr="h" comment="" name="logo.gif" version="1"
 
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