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Re: [Devel] special answer to spam

From: David Turner
Subject: Re: [Devel] special answer to spam
Date: Fri, 26 Mar 2004 05:51:36 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla Thunderbird 0.5 (Windows/20040207)

Hello All,

Werner LEMBERG wrote:
Speaking of spam, is there any way we can reduce the amount of
garbage being propagated through this mailing list?  I'm getting
increasing amount of junk with [Devel] in the subject line.  Is
there some technical reason why this cannot be stopped by the
mailing list software (e.g., checking if the "received from" domain
matches the domain of some mailing list subscriber)?

I will have a look, but I can't help here much since I'm neither the
list owner, nor do I have administrator rights.  There is *no* spam
filter active!  David could do something, but he has no time, as we
all know :-(

As a first aid, I'm now filtering address@hidden' which seems to
post the spam on the list; additionally, I've removed the spam from
the March archive.

Well, one problem is that I'm not the sysadmin on the FreeType server
(I only get an account with a few things I can tweak myself, but that's
all :-), so drastic changes take time, because they need not interrupt
other services on the machine.

It seems that the first thing we need to do to reduce the clutter is
to upgrade to a more recent version of Mailman (we're currently at 2.0.13
which doesn't even allow me to limit the size of attachments !), since
it now provides much better content filter control.

However, this involves shutting down the smtp daemon for the time of the
upgrade, which could be significant if something doesn't work as expected,
as well as re-configuration of mail aliases and other sad hacks.

This needs the full cooperation of the sysadmin, which is also busy, and
probably doing this at night to prevent regular users of the machine from
not receiving mail for a few hours.

I'll try to see if it's possible soon, and I'll inform all lists about it
before we cut anything.

- David Turner
- The FreeType Project  (

PS: A small additionnal note regarding the spam:

  - I routinely receive mail that pretends to come from but
    really originates from other places. Some of these even have a
    [FreeType] or [Devel] tag in the subject header. I can't do much
    about these things

  - I installed junkfilter on my account to (hopefully) remove most of
    the junk in my personal inboxes. This had a surprising effect though:
    I didn't received most of the spam that goes through the list, and
    was not aware of the amount of shit transiting here. Just discovered
    it lately browsing through the archives. Terrific.. :-(


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