Menu Close

Email Lists

“the BMW motorcycle electronic campfire”

The main mailing list is like an electronic campfire at a rally for BMW motorcycle owners and enthusiasts. Other lists focus on technical issues, or the BMW Motorcycle Owners of America club, and they have fewer email messages per day.

If you join the IBMWR by subscribing to one of the lists, you’ll read discussions on technical issues like repairs and custom modifications, product reviews, dealer reviews, trip reports of all kinds, meetings all over the world, and hundreds of other topics (including a monthly email on how to unsubscribe). You’ll also see that the list is a free, readily-available source of help and information for your BMW-related problems and mysteries.

We have two different lists you can subscribe to:

  • The Main List. The mainstay of the club, which currently has about 1200 members world-wide! (subscribe)
  • The Tech List. Technical discussions, the place to ask technical questions. Currently about 1100 members (subscribe)

Subscribing and Unsubscribing

To subscribe to any BMW mailing list or digest (and become a President of the IBMWR), go to and from there, open the information page of the list you’re interested in joining.

You can also subscribe by sending an email message with the subject “subscribe” to the following addresses

You will receive a confirmation email. SAVE THE EMAIL and BOOKMARK THE URL it points you to. The email contains your password and the URL is your personal account management page.

To unsubscribe to any BMW mailing list, visit your account management page, login and unsubscribe. If you’ve lost your password or the URL of your page, go to, and click on the list you want to unsubscribe from. All the way at the bottom, where it says “To unsubscribe from BMWMc, get a password reminder, or change options”, type your email address and click the “Unsubscribe or edit options” button. Your options page is displayed.

To Set Digest Mode, NoMail, or Other Options

On your account management page, you can switch digest mode on and off, set NoMail to temporarily stop list emails, and other options.

Just go down the list of options, checking or unchecking the ones you want. NoMail is what you’d use if you’re going on vacation. Any option that says “global” allows you to set that option for all IBMWR mailing lists to which you subscribe. Be sure to click “Submit My Changes” when you’re done – you must do this to complete the edits you make.

The regular IBMWR mailing list distributes anywhere from 1 to 50 messages per day to each subscriber. If that sounds like too much of a good thing for you, think about subscribing to the digest instead of the regular list.

What’s the “digest?”

A digest of a mailing list is one large message that contains several “regular” mail messages. When you subscribe to the digest mode of the list, instead of getting each individual message one by one, you’ll get one large message every now and then, typically one or two each day. The list server stores up the individual messages until they reach a certain file size and then sends the bundle out to you. This naturally delays some email.

You can also choose from two types of digests – all the messages strung together in a long text file, or with the individual messages included as attachments (MIME).

Some people prefer digests, some don’t. If you like to post to the list, it may be easier to get individual mail messages; if you mostly just like to read what others say, then the digest may be more convenient for you. If you use the digest, there’s some special writing stuff you need to know.

Special digest stuff

Remember that you’re in digest mode when replying to messages. When you reply to a message within a digest:

  • Edit your reply’s Subject field so that it contains the subject of the message you are replying to. Do not send a reply that says Subject: RE Digest XXXX. Instead, cut-and-paste the subject of the message you’re replying to into your reply.
  • Most mail tools include the entire original message in a reply. Do not do this. Edit your reply so that only the specific message you’re replying to is included. (But don’t delete the names of previous writers; people following the thread like to know who said what.)

More info

We’ve set up a “Help!” email account if you have a problem that can’t be resolved. Messages sent to will reach a mailing list administrator.

If you’d like more information on Mailman, the package that’s used to manage the list, the URL for the user’s manual is:

Problems and troubleshooting

If you’re having trouble subscribing or unsubscribing, the cause is likely to be an incorrect address being generated somewhere in the chain of computers between you and the list server. There are two things you should do yourself to fix the problem before you contact the list administrator for a manual fix:

  1. find out who your computer thinks you are and
  2. find out who the mailing list server thinks you are.

Make sure your email address is correct, then check, login, and make sure that you have subscribed the same email address.

Ohmigod, I’m not getting any mail!

Every once in a while, you’ll wake up and log on or go into work, get a cup of coffee and settle down for your daily fix of BMW trivia. Only your mailbox will be empty.

Try not to take this personally. Everyone else isn’t really off somewhere talking about you.

What probably happened is that one of the many computers and network links between your computer and the IBMWR server went down, so mail addressed to you is returned (bounces back) to the server. After the server receives several bounces from your address, it reaches the conlusion that something is wrong with the route to your address. So you’re unsubscribed. This prevents stacks of messages from being sent back and forth over the net until the problem resolves itself.

To fix the problem, you need to subscribe again. You cannot subscribe to the list twice, so don’t worry about it. The worst thing that will happen is that you’ll receive an error message from the IBMWR server, telling you that you’re already a member of the list. If this happens, it means your mail is disappearing into the great bit bucket in the sky. Which means that it’s a problem for you and your system administrator to resolve.

When you need a person instead of a computer . . .

On occasion, like if you suddenly stop receiving mail and you cannot resubscribe, you may need to contact the list administrator, instead of the mail server.

Messages sent to will reach a mailing list administrator. And if you need something other than help, the email address for the list administrator(s) is:

Note that this is the address of a real person, not a computer managing the list. Normal list admin questions should be sent here, but may take a day or so to be handled. Please do not send requests to subscribe or unsubscribe unless you’ve tried to fix the problem yourself, and nothing has worked.