Migration of Google Groups to discourse



The plan for the migration is:


  • Put out an announcement of upcoming move to julia-dev
  • Put out a statement of intent to julia-users explaining why (and soliciting feedback from the broader community)
  • After a 5-7 days put julia-dev into read only move
  • Send out a e-mail again notifying subscribers
  • Include instructions for setting up email forwarding from Discourse
    • is bidirectional email possible/advisable?


  • After a successful migration of julia-dev (Time frame for evaluation: 4 weeks?)
  • Put out an announcement giving a timeline for the move
  • Put Julia-users in read-only mode

Other mailing-list

  • After migration of julia-dev. Any other mailing-list or subcommunity is welcomed to contact the @admins to create a category/subcategory
  • We should discuss the set of top-level categories


  1. We are not doing an automate migration of e-mails.
  2. No migration of prior content (since that would complicate the move)
  3. Mail-in is enabled for a subset of categories Discourse as a mailing list
  4. Sign in via Google and Github is enabled for now. It also works for users who have already created a account manually given that the e-mail address is the same.

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Note: This and the post above are wiki-posts, so feel free to edit them.

Announcement to julia-dev

We are currently in the process of moving julia-dev from Google Groups to a forum/mailing-list platform powered by Discourse. For the reasons behind this move, please see the statement of intent on julia-users. We decided to move julia-dev first because of the smaller mail throughput and to see if our community is happy with the features Discourse offers.

The new web address is http://discourse.julialang.org/c/dev.

The timeline for the migration is the following:

  • Discourse is available from now on and we encourage everybody to post new topics there.
  • On DATE, julia-dev will be set to read-only mode.

In order to give people the choice of opt-in, we opted for a non-automated migration, therefore we won’t move over previous content nor previous accounts.

Participation purely through e-mails is possible. For instructions on how to set it up, head over to http://discourse.julialang.org/t/discourse-as-a-mailing-list .

Statement of intent on julia-users

The Julia community has been growing rapidly over the last few years and for its discussions uses many different services, including Google Groups (julia-users, julia-dev etc.), IRC and Gitter. Sometimes individual packages or organizations also use their own forums and chat rooms. All in all, that results in the fragmentation of our community’s online knowledge and in difficulties finding it, which leads to repetition of questions and other loss of time or cause for frustration.

To host the entire Julia community into one place, Discourse has been brought up in the past as a convenient platform to replace the currently used ones. Changing something established is tricky, so we decided to move slowly on this. For a first step, we are only migrating julia-dev to Discourse (see the corresponding post on julia-dev for a timeline).

We would like to solicit feedback from the broader Julia community about migrating julia-users to Discourse as well, and potentially other mailing lists like julia-stats. If you are interested in trying it out, please visit http://discourse.julialang.org. Discourse is organized by categories, so Development is the new home of julia-dev and General would be the future home of julia-users.

If the community is happy with Discourse as a solution, we will move forward with the migration. The timetable would be roughly as follows:

  1. About 4 weeks after the migration of julia-dev, decision to be made on executing or not the migration of julia-users, and on its date.
  2. One week before the date of migration, post preparative announcement on julia-users.
  3. On the date of migration, post final announcement on julia-users and set it into read-only mode.

Please post feedback or comments either at http://discourse.julialang.org/t/migration-of-google-groups-to-discourse or in this thread.

Discussion categories

I think it’d be great to enable sign-on via Github/Google.


Done for Google. For github I need one of the Owners of the JuliaLang organisation.
Important to not that it is not a one or other choice. As long as it is the same e-mail address they link to the same account.


How do I enable this on GitHub?


You need to create a oauth_client_id and secret for the JuliaLang Github repository. And them add them under Admin->Login

Base address is http://discourse.julialang.org
Callback is http://discourse.julialang.org/auth/github/callback


It seems like we should be using HTTPS for everything. Is there some way to do that?


I contacted discourse about it.

@StefanKarpinski with regards to e-mail forwarding. Do you mean between discourse and Google Groups or
setting up discourse in a way that Users can use it like a mailing list?

We can activate creation of topics via e-mail and answering to topics via e-mail is already possible.


Both or either? Some people will really want to do everything with email, but it’s a little unclear to me how good an idea even trying to support that is since it may be such a limited way to experience the Discourse forums.


Just FYI, this also probably means the end of Gmane/NNTP support, as I don’t think the Discourse mail-out format is compatible / Gmane supports subscribing to Discourse forums (definitely not straight away, as the service is still getting restored).


Ok, I will write a post explaining how to use discourse purely per e-mail and activate mail-in for registered users. As an example you should be able to send an e-mail to julialang+dev@discoursemail.com to create a new topic.

Update: See Discourse as a mailing list


Any other feedback on this for now? We are working on enabling SSL for this site and then we are ready to go from my perspective.


Would this mean that one cannot read the message using an nttp client (julia-users is mirrored by gmane and can be read using any email client that supports nttp)? AFAIK, discourse does not have an nttp interface.


We could continue to forward Discourse to julia-users, which could be forwarded to Gmane. Given that people can edit messages that won’t be a completely faithful representation of the conversation but it’s a decent approximation. I have to confess that I don’t really understand why people want to access a mailing list (or discourse) via gmane.


I have to confess that I don’t really understand why people want to access a mailing list (or discourse) via gmane.

Habit and laziness…

Personally, I subscribe to a mailing list only for projects that I am actively involved in. For other projects, I read the message a few times a week. With mailing lists, I need to subscribe (which often involves filling out a form, etc; at one stage, you had to jump through hoops to subscribe to googlegroups without a google id) and then create a filter to move those message to a specific folder. With Gmane, I don’t need to do anything. Simply add the newsgroup in my nttp client (using an interface that I am familiar with), and read messages.


julia-users is in read-only mode as of this morning.


Thanks for the announcement on julia-users.

split this topic #19

A post was split to a new topic: Establishing category Domain/Quantum