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Top FAQs - Groups



General Usage

How do I create a Group?

To create a new Google Group, follow these steps:

  1. Click the "Create a group..." button on the Google Groups homepage. Enter a descriptive name for the group. A group email address will automatically be generated with "-list" appended to it. The "-list" is mandatory; it identifies that the group is user-created.
  2. Give your group a description.
  3. Set the Access level the option that's most appropriate for the type of group you are trying to create. Then click the Create my group button.
  4. Enter the email addresses of the people you'd like to invite to your group. If you'd prefer to directly add your members, click the "Add members directly" link. (Copying and pasting an existing list of email addresses into this form is one easy way of populating your group.)
  5. Write an invitation or welcome message, and select an email subscription option for your members if you're directly adding them.
  6. Click the "Invite members" or "Add members" button. Google will send notifications or invitations to your group members.
For a guide with pictures, see the Creating a New Group page.

Are there restrictions on the name of the group?

All new groups created by the user will have a "-list" appended to the name, but there are no restrictions on the name of the group itself. The group names are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Stern IT reserves the right to delete groups that use offensive language. Users who abuse Stern IT services will be reported to the administration. 

How do I subscribe to a group?

You can subscribe to a group through our web interface or via email. To subscribe to a group through our web interface, simply log in to your Google Account and visit the group of your choice. Then click the "Join this group" link on the right-hand side of the page under "About this group."

To subscribe to a group via email, send an email to [Groupname] For example, if you wanted to join a group called google-friends, you'd send an email to

Note: for restricted-membership groups, the group owner will need to approve your subscription request before you can join.

How do I submit a post to a group?

You can submit a new post to a group either by posting directly to the group or sending a message via email.

To submit a post directly to a group

Visit the group's homepage and click the + new post button in the colored Discussions bar on the right side of the page. (Alternatively, you can click the Discussions link on the right side of the page and then click the + Start a discussion button at the bottom of the page. This button only appears for the first post to the group.)

To reply to an existing topic, click Reply near the bottom of the posting.

To submit a new post via email:

Send an email to your group's email address. The subject line of the email will be the title of the post, and the body of the email will be the content of the post.

Users can post on behalf of the group itself

Instead of their individual username, using the web interface. This setting is on the "Group settings" | "Email delivery" page. You have to be an owner/manager to enable this setting. Turning it on means that when users post from the web interface, a dropdown menu appears where users can choose whether the email appears to come "From:" or "From:".

You can reply to an existing post over email

If you're set up to receive all posts to the group through email. Simply find the post you'd like to reply to in your email inbox and click the Reply button in your email program. Type your message into the body of the email, making sure you keep the subject line of the email intact so that your post is sent to the correct thread.

How do I send a large attachment to a group?

Google Groups has a 25MB message limit. This includes the message body and the attachments. If there are multiple documents that need to be sent as attachments, consider putting document within Google Documents and sharing a link to the document instead.

How can I stop receiving email messages sent to a group?

There are two ways to stop receiving email messages to a group. If you are no longer want to be affiliated with a particular group, you can unsubscribe from the group. Click on Edit My Membership on the right-hand side of the group and there will be an "Unsubscribe" button.

If you want to remain affiliated with the group, but don't want to receive all the messages that are posted to the group, you can change how messages will be presented to you. Click on Edit My Membership on the right-hand side of the group and there will be an option for "No Email". By selecting this option, you are still permitted to enter the group interface and read the discussion archives.

How do I add a user as a sender?

If you are coming from the Stern's old mailing list system (Hermes), you will notice that there is no longer a designated "sender" role within Google Groups. Instead, to add a sender, a user should be added as a regular member. Once added, an owner or manager can click on the Management Tasks link on the right-hand side of the group, click on the Manage Members tab, then click on Edit next to the name of the user. The posting permission of this user can be modified to "Member is allowed to post". This will override group-level access settings that only permit only Managers to post.

For a guide with pictures, see the Managing Groups Membership page.

How do I enable/disable message archives?

By default, the Group will keep a copy of all messages. These messages are accessible to all members who visit the specific group page. To disable this option, go to Group Settings > Advanced > Do Not Archive Messages To This Group  and check off this option. To re-enable message archives, uncheck this option at any time. Any messages posted to this group when this option is checked will not be saved in the group.

Administrative Usage

When migrating from Hermes, will Stern accounts that no longer exist be added to the new Google Group?

No. During the migration from Hermes to Google Groups, entries in Hermes that refer to Stern accounts that no longer exist will not be migrated. 

Can the owner/manager of a Google Group disable the "No Email" subscription option for its members?

No. Google gives its users control of the mail that he/she receives. While an owner or manager of a group can assign the default subscription for its members, the members always have the option of changing it to another subscription type. It is not possible to force users to retain a particular subscription type and it is not possible to disable the subscription options of its users.

If discussion archives are disabled, will members still have the "No Email" subscription option?

Yes. Even when discussion archives are disabled, users can continue to choose the "No Email" option. This effectively means the user will not be able to read any emails send to a Google Group. It is imperative to communicate when discussion archives will not be available. 

How do I add/remove members to a Human Resources group?

HR groups (faculty, staff, administrative) are synchronized nightly from the HR database. It is not necessary to manually add/remove members to an HR Google Group. If an exception must be made prior to the nightly synchronization, the request must be made through Stern IT.

How do I add/remove members to a Class List?

Class lists (ie. FINC-GB-2301-20-S2012) are synchronized nightly from the AIS database and no manual changes to the membership should be necessary. The class instructor is the owner of the group and can manually add TA's as managers to give them management rights to the group. If a student must be added before the group is updated by AIS, the owner or manager can add the student manually as a member through the Google Groups web interface. Although a student can also be manually removed from the group, unless the student is officially removed through AIS, that student may end up being repopulated into the member list.

How do I add/remove members to a Student List?

Student Lists (MBA1, mba1blk3) are synchronized nightly from the AIS database with newly added users, but users who are removed from the AIS database will not be removed from the Google Groups list. Therefore, to add a user to the Google Group, the owner or manager must ensure that the user is properly categorized within AIS. To remove a user from the Google Group, the owner or manager must unsubscribe the user through the Google Groups interface.


I did not receive a copy of the message I sent to Google Groups. Why not?

In Hermes, "senders" receive a copy of their message if they are also listed as "members" of that list. In Google Groups, the sender does not receive a copy of the message they post to the group. There are two methods to verify that the message was posted:
- Adding another account as a member. When the message is sent to the group, the non-sending member account will receive a copy.
- Turn on Discussion Archives and verify it is posted to the group. First, verify the Discussion Archives are permitted. Go to Group Settings > Advanced and make sure the "Do Not Archive Messages To This Group" option is UNCHECKED. When a message is sent to the group, a copy of the message will be posted on the group website.

I sent a message to the group, but no one sees it. Why not?

This can be due to multiple reasons. Please be aware that you, as a sender, will not receive a copy of your own message. If other recipients don't receive a message, here are a few possible reasons:
- A message can take up to an hour to be sent.
- The recipient's subscription is set to "No Email". The recipient must enter the Google Group page for your group, click on "Edit My Membership" and select the Email option.
- The message is being moderated. This can occur because the group owner set the group to moderate messages or your message was flagged as spam. The group owner must decide to "post" your message before it appears. The group owner can also reject your message. [Moderating Messages]
- You are not an authorized sender. Groups can be configured to prevent external addresses (not Stern address) or to prevent non-members from sending. If you need to send to this group, please contact the group owner to open the access settings to allow you to send.

Why can I see the group email address within the BCC field?

Google shows recipients the email address of the group they belong to. This is an expected result by Google. The recipient will not be able to see any of the other BCC recipients.