Mailing lists are the most important communication media in Gentoo. They are used to announce events, discuss changes, review code. Use of mailing lists is explicitly required by some of the processes such as package last rites.
The complete list of Gentoo mailing lists can be found in the mailing list section of the Gentoo website. All mailing lists are archived. The archives for the public lists can be found on the mailing list archives site. The data from the non-public archives can be provided by the Infrastructure team at the request of a developer.
There are five primary lists intended for Gentoo developers (and contributors):
- gentoo-core — internal non-public Gentoo developer list
- gentoo-dev — public technical discussion list
- gentoo-dev-announce — developer announcement list
- gentoo-nfp — Gentoo Foundation discussion list
- gentoo-project — public non-technical discussion list
Most of the discussions take place on the gentoo-dev and gentoo-project mailing lists. Strictly technical topics (e.g. ebuild development, system behavior) go into gentoo-dev, while non-technical topics (e.g. organizational matters) go into gentoo-project. Both lists are public and open to everyone. Developers are strongly encouraged to follow these lists.
The gentoo-nfp list is used for affairs strictly related to the Gentoo Foundation. For example, this includes funding and legal affairs.
The gentoo-dev-announce is used for important announcements that affect developers, for example major policy changes, project news. This list is also used to announce last rites and packages needing new maintainers. gentoo-dev-announce is not meant to accept replies, so all messages sent to it must be cross-posted to another mailing list and have their Reply-To header set to that list. Messages without Reply-To are rejected, the remaining messages are moderated to prevent accidental replies from coming through.
The gentoo-core mailing list is restricted to developers. It is generally used when developers wish to share information regarding their personal situation with other developers and to discuss sensitive matters that cannot be published at the time. The list is non-public and it is forbidden to publicly discuss messages from -core, forward them or cross-post to another mailing list. All developers are subscribed to it.