Tag Archives | spam

Notes from CentraLUG, 1-Feb-2010

Five people attended the February 1st meeting of the Central New Hampshire Linux User Group. We met at Room 146 of the New Hampshire Technical Institute’s Library from 7 to 9 PM.

There were lots of interesting discussion. Ed was attending for the first time, and is getting back into software engineering after some time in another career. He had some questions on what the different distros were and how they worked, and there were, of course, plenty of opinions. Susan had some updates on her research on the BF scheduler, the bleeding-edge Ubuntu releases, realtime kernels, and the Dragon Naturally Speaking application. I reviewed some of the upcoming meetings, and there was a lot of interest in the Seacoast LUG’s “Sugar on a Stick” presentation and the Cascading Stylesheet presentation at PySIG at the end of the month.

Mark McSweeney made the main presentation. Mark works in a small office with a few partners, and budgets are tight. A few years ago, they had deployed a Microsoft back end and discovered that there were no satisfactory solutions for spam filtering on the Exchange server they had as a mail server. Mark came up with a very effective and economical solution using PostFix, Amavisd-new, ClamAV, DCC, Razor, Pyzor and SpamAssassin. Mark’s slides can be found at http://wiki.gnhlug.org/twiki2/bin/view/Www/SpamFilter, including links to the solution he followed, an updated version of which can be found at http://www.freespamfilter.org/

Member Susan Cragin will be making the presentation at out March 1st meeting, on the Dragon Naturally Speaking 10 program running on WINE. Stay tuned for more details.

Thanks for Mark for his great presentation, to the NHTI and Library staff for the great facilities, to Dave Rose for bringing the projector, and to all for attending and participating!

Please don’t backscatter your spam to other innocent victims

One of my lesser used email accounts is overflowing this morning, filled with very polite messages like:

Hi. This is the qmail-send program at hurricane.mail.adnap.net.au.
I’m afraid I wasn’t able to deliver your message to the following addresses.
This is a permanent error; I’ve given up. Sorry it didn’t work out.

Thanks very much for the notice, but kse7rt93n@example.com isn’t a real “From:” address. If your email system was configured to examine the sending address, you would recognize that this was unlikely to come from my mail server. And if you’d fed the mail message contents into your spam detector, it would almost certainly tell you this was junk (if it didn’t, you need a better spam detector). Bouncing any email you can’t deliver could also tell a malicious program which addresses got through, encouraging them to try A-Z and noting which addresses didn’t bounce.

When you bounce this message, you double the amount of traffic that spam takes on the internet, and you burden yet another innocent email system who has to process and dispose of the message you should have handled. You have become part of the problem. Please be a good internet and email citizen and silently drop email you cannot deliver. Thanks.

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This work by Ted Roche is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States.