Email Distribution Lists

Available To: Faculty, Staff, Students

NAU provides several options for distributing email to small or large groups of people both on and off campus.  Please examine the options below; reviewing the various features to better assist you in choosing the option that best fits your needs.  If you have any questions, please contact the ITS Solution Center at 928-523-1511.

Email Client Distribution Lists

These are distribution lists that are created by you, within your email client (Outlook, OWA, Entrouage, etc.) and are only available for your use from the client that you created it in.  You can include any valid email address when you create a list this way, they are not restricted to NAU only addresses.  These lists are limited by the outgoing quota limit enforced on our mail servers.

Exchange Email Distribution Lists

These are distribution lists that are created by the system administrators for you to use on the NAU Exchange server.  Active Directory is used by individuals to maintain these lists and everyone on the list must be an NAU employee or affiliate with a valid NAU IRIS account.  As these are all NAU addresses, these lists are not restricted by our outgoing quota limit on our mail servers.

Students may be in Exchange Distribution Lists, however sending to a large number of students with an Exchange Distribution List may not work properly, because there are circumstances where a student’s primary NAU e-mail address will not be available in the Global Address List. The best ways to send e-mails to students are with Classlists or Listserv.

Classlists

These distribution lists are automatically generated and maintained for each class taught during the current semester at NAU.  Classlists are made available each semester to faculty teaching current courses for mailing content and information to their students.

Listserv

These are distribution lists that are created by request from an individual or group for a specific topic or focus of discussion.  People can self-subscribe or unsubscribe from a listserv list.  Owners of these lists have many options available to control how the lists are populated, who can subscribe, who can post, who can view the replies, etc.  Members of the list can use any email address, it does not need to be an NAU address.  There is effectively no limit to the number of people who can subscribe to a list.  A listserv can send a message to a large group of people very quickly without running into the outgoing mail quota enforced by our mail servers.

Email Distribution Lists Comparison

Email Client Distribution Lists (lists created by an individual) Exchange Server Distribution Lists (Server side)  Classlists  Listserv  
Person who creates their list maintains this list on their email client (Outlook, Mail, etc.)
Must be manually created and maintained by individual who created it from within their Email Client and only that individual may use the list.
One person or multiple owners maintains this list on the server and security is an additional feature. ITS or the existing owner of the list maintains the owners.
Created and initially configured by ITS. Who is on the list is maintained by the individual who requested it. The person who created the list may use this list as well as other people on the IRIS system.
List is automatically populated daily based on who is registered for the class.
System maintains list membership. The list is owned by the instructor of record for the class.
List owners update subscribers, may allow self-subscription, or list is automatically populated based on a list of criteria (employment, department, major, etc.).
List owners can configure their lists and update the list as they like (add/remove owners or any other listserv configuration).
 
One message goes out to each individual on the list – possible issues with outgoing mail quota. One message goes out to each individual on the list, and all messages stay completely within IRIS, there is no need to worry about send limits or limitations with Outlook. One message goes out to multiple people – no quota issues with outgoing mail. One message goes out to multiple people – no quota issues with outgoing mail.
Members of list need to contact the list owner to be removed from the list. Members of the group may leave the list if it is a public list with open subscription, but will need to contact the list owner to be removed if it is a closed list. Members are removed from the list automatically once the class has ended. Members can remove themselves from the list by unsubscribing themselves (unless the list is auto populated).
Reply messages go back to the owner or to the entire list if Reply All is used. Reply messages go back to the owner or to the entire list if Reply All is used. You can’t reply to postings. This is a broadcast list only. Reply messages can go back to the list, or to the list owner, or to a specified email address.
Posted messages may be saved by individuals on their email account. Posted messages may be saved by individuals on their email account. Posted messages are saved automatically in a list digest. Posted messages can be archived and made available to all members of the list if requested by owner at list set up.
Attachments can be included in messages. Attachment size limit is 20 MB. Attachments can be included in messages. Attachment size limit is 20 MB. Attachments can be included in messages. Attachment size limit is 5 MB. Attachments can be included in messages. Attachment size limit is 20 MB.
Anyone on the list can reply to “all”. Only the owner can start discussions. The owner can use BCC if they want replies going to them only. The owner of the list may work with ITS to allow students, other servers, or off-campus senders to send to the list. Moderation is available to use the list for broadcasting. These lists are set up as broadcast lists. Only the instructor can post to them. Lists can be set up so that they are moderated or open. Moderated lists are lists where the editors or list owners must approve postings.
Open lists can allow subscribers to post or anyone to post to the list even if they are not subscribed.
Listservs can also be configured to only allow the owner to send to the list.
Limited of number of addresses you can include in List (8 KB limit; somewhere between 60-120 addresses).
Can use any valid email address within the list.
Any number of people may be on this list. All of the recipients must have IRIS accounts. Entire class
Automatically populated with students email address.
Unlimited number of subscribers.
Can use any valid email address within the list.
Each recipient can see other recipients unless list owner uses BCC Each recipient can see other recipients unless the sender uses BCC, or the list has moderation enabled. Maintains confidentiality of individuals Maintains confidentiality of individuals
Must be logged into the NAU Domain using Active Directory or Outlook to use list. Owners and Senders must be logged into the NAU domain using Active Directory, Outlook, or Outlook Web Access to use list. Owner can be on any network to use list. Owner and people on the list can be on any network to use list.
      Many other list configuration options are available – this is a very powerful tool.

Related Services

Available to studentsAvailable to facultyAvailable to staff

Information and resources for Email at NAU.
Available to studentsAvailable to facultyAvailable to staff

Listserv is a bulk email tool that can send thousands of individual emails to predefined groups of people. Listserv provides the performance you need to manage all of your opt-in email lists, including email newsletters, announcement lists, discussion groups and email communities.

Training & Documentation


View tutorials for using OWA to manage distribution groups.