phpList and Mailman Comparison

Both phpList and Mailman are available to customers, via our cPanel control panel. Both can be used for newsletters, customer mailings, email marketing, etc.

Below, we discuss both products, to help you decide which one is right for you. Of course, you are not limited to these two options... you are always welcome to install and utilize your own mailing list software, from the many that are available via open source.

  • Mailman is primarily designed to be a discussion list (i.e. users send a message to the group, and group members can then respond privately, or back to the whole group). However, some customers have configured Mailman to be a one-way newsletter distribution system.
  • Mailman has easy archiving of messages, and the archives can be private (requiring password) or public (easily spidered and archived by Google, by the way).
  • Mailman handles bounces well (will unsubscribe members automatically after a certain number of bounces).
  • Mailman is not "pretty". It is fairly text based, although it can be configured for HTML mail. It's user interface (for users to manage their subscriptions) and admin interface (for the list admin to take care of the list) are both very plain and simple.
  • Users can subscribe and unsubscribe via the user interface.
  • Mailman is already installed and accessible via the Mailman icon in your cPanel.
  • When Mailman has a new version available, it is installed automatically, so customers do not have to worry about installing updates.
  • There are some links to Mailman tutorials HERE that you may find helpful.

  • phpList is an open-source mailing list system. It is only used for one-way newsletter distribution.
  • It is more pretty than Mailman. :-)
  • The customer will log into phpList via a web interface, compose their pretty HTML newsletter mailing in the web interface, then save and submit it to their members.
  • Each mailing has a unique unsubscribe link so members can easily unsubscribe with a single click.
  • phpList has a learning curve, but is very powerful and very popular. Try a Google search for phpList to see what I mean about popularity.
  • phpList also handles bounces very well, if configured correctly. Bounces go to a special mailbox, and then before sending out a newsletter, you first process previous bounces to clean up the list.
  • To install phpList, customers must click on the Fantastico icon in their web hosting control panel (cPanel), then proceed to install phpList.
  • When phpList has a new version available, customers are required to the update -- they are not installed automatically. To perform the upgrade, customers log into cPanel, click Fantastico, then update via the provided link.
  • You can read more about phpList, and even try a DEMO, by going to phpList's website at

Both Mailman and phpList are extremely popular and there are hundreds of helpful tutorials and help resources on the Internet, if needed.

Both options are included as part of our web hosting packages, at no extra cost. However, if you need help to configure and troubleshoot, we charge our standard hourly rate ($60/hr as of June 10) unless it is a simple question, of course.

If you have further questions, please feel free to contact us.
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