Home Forums AFP548 Community Projects PHPList – Email Announcement System

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    PHPList is a very effective solution for transmitting bulk emails in an annoucement fashion. While Mailman and other Mailing List Managers can operate in announcement mode as well as a fully interactive mode, PHPList focuses solely on a system where a set of list administrators control the content sent to the list.

    The main benefits to PHPList include ease of use, support for HTML personalized emails, and the fact that it uses MySQL for everything.

    PHPList can also be used with other Open Source solutions such as the Joomla CMS.

    Note: Please do not respond with questions to this thread. If you have difficulties with your installation create a new thread in the Special Ops forum, post at the PHPList Forum, or contact me.


    Step 1: Download PHPList

    Download PHPList from the following URL:

    PHPList 2.10.2


    Step 2: Install PHPList on server

    Open the resulting folder and navigate within the public_html folder. Copy the “lists” folder to your web hosting directory. If you want to have a site that is just for running PHPList, make this folder your site home, otherwise, place it within an existing website directory to act as a subfolder of that directory.


    Step 3: Create MySQL database

    Using PHPMyAdmin, create a new database for PHPList. By default, it expects this to be “phplistdb”, but you can make it any name you prefer especially if you plan on running multiple copies of PHPList.


    Step 4: Edit Configuration file

    Within the “lists” directory, navigate to the “config” directory and open “config.php” in a text editor (I suggest SubEthaEdit).

    At the top of the document, you need to edit these areas:

    # what is your Mysql database server
    $database_host = "localhost";
    # what is the name of the database we are using
    $database_name = "phplistdb";
    # who do we log in as?
    $database_user = "phplist";
    # and what password do we use
    $database_password = 'phplist';
    # if you use multiple installations of PHPlist you can set this to
    # something to identify this one. it will be prepended to email report 
    # subjects
    $installation_name = 'PHPlist'; 

    By default, PHPList expects you to use the public_html as you root directory. However, I find this annoying and it is much more useful to go directly ot the “lists” folder as a I mentioned in step 2. If you followed my suggestion, you must edit the config.php at this point:

    $pageroot = '/lists';
    $adminpages = $pageroot . '/admin';

    changing it to read:

    $pageroot = '';
    $adminpages = $pageroot . '/admin';

    At this point you are ready to go. However, PHPList will be in test mode and not actually send any message. When you are ready to send messages in the system, you also must edit the following section:

    # if test is true (not 0) it will not actually send ANY messages,
    # but display what it would have sent
    define ("TEST",1);

    Step 5: Administer PHPList

    You are now ready to log into the system and begin administering the site. PHPList will populate the MySQL database and log you in. It will then request you configure the system, changing the default admin password and the basic configuration options as well. You then can use the default “test” list and add some emails to it for testing. Click on the “send a message” link to create an email and send it. PHPList does not automatically sent messages and you must then click the “process queue” link for actual transmission. This last step can be scripted to happen automatically.

    PHPList allows you to create subscription pages and templates to help customize your lists. To send an html email, you can create the email in an html editor and paste the raw code into PHPList.

    If you would like to send attachments, you must go back to the config file and enable the attachments option along with specifying how many attachments should be allowed.



    thanks for the good instructions.
    I tried to follow them, but when trying login to my admin index at
    i get this messae:
    Fatal Error: Cannot connect to database, access denied. Please contact the administrator
    any idea what could be the problem?
    i think it might be the config.php configuration.
    do you what should be my sql db server?


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