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Doc $Author: tong $
Doc $Date: 2003/12/26 22:35:20 $

SpamFree - Free you from spams


SpamFree - Free you from spams


spamfree [options]

where options can be:

  -c cfg_file           Use this alternative configuration file
  -m max                Set the maximum number of messages to download
  -v                    Verbose mode, more -v will increase output messages
  -h                    This help


SpamFree will download only normal emails. Spams are killed right on the server without being downloaded.


The ultimate goal of SpamFree is to free you up. Free you up from spams is only its most superficial feature.

Free you from configuration headaches

Unix/Linux tools are powerful. But configuring those powerful tools might be painful. Configuring SpamFree is most easy and intuitive. You won't work on things as cryptic as "user 'foo' there with password 'buzz' is 'bar' here".

Free you from putting up with awkward solutions

SpamFree will do spams deletion and mail retrieval in one shot. Statistics from shows that over 90% mails it gets are spams. So it is natural for POP3 clients to weed out spams right on server before downloading them. But don't expect fetchmail to do that for you, even in the future (from fetchmail-6.2.4 FAQ: "I'm not going to do these; fetchmail's job is transport, not policy, and I refuse to change it from doing one thing well to attempting many things badly").

However, if you turn to other client-side spam killing programs, you will then realized that those programs will only kill spams -- nothing more. So you end up with a solution that you have to install two set of programs, learn to configure them in their respectful syntaxes, and launch both of them one after another just to do one thing -- getting your email.

This really bothers me. Moreover, I use YahooPOPs, and I find the two step approach intolerable, because it takes an awful lot of time for YahooPOPs to connect. Each time I retrieved my mails from YahooPOPs, I wished I could have a one stop solution.

Free you from being tied to a certain tool

SpamFree allows you to keep your current spam-killing approach. Every client-side spam killing program (that I tried) claims that their spam filtering language is easy to learn and yet powerful to use. However, no matter how powerful they are, you are force to give up your current solution and learn a new language and try to find a way to map your current approach into the new language. Moreover, what if you find out that the new spam filtering language is still not able to meet your requirement?

SpamFree will free you from being tied to a certain tool and forced to learn a new language. Use back to your own tools. Or, if you don't have one yet, use procmail, the most powerful mail filtering tool ever built.

SpamFree allows you to use what ever spam detecting program you want, be it your own Perl script, or well praised SpamAssassin. You can even let the artificial intelligence help you out (e.g., bogofilter).

SpamFree even free you from the constrain of itself. SpamFree is designed to be fully configurable. Everything you want to twist should be configurable. If not, drop me a line, in the SpamFree "Feature Request" forum, For customizing and running SpamFree, please refer to the Customization.html file.

Free you from maintaining two sets of spam detecting scripts

One of the great benefit of using back your current spam-killing approach is that you can easily translate your current spam detecting scripts into scripts for SpamFree.

In fact, I wrote a one-line sed script to automatically translate my current procmail scripts for SpamFree. So my procmail scripts for remote pop (SpamFree) stay parallel to my local delivery ones. Whenever I update my local delivery procmail scripts, the scripts for SpamFree can be automatically updated. In this way, I only need to maintain one set of rule.

TODO: document how this can be done.

Free you from spams

SpamFree will delete spams right at server side without downloading them. To fight spams, you need to pay some prices. Either you delete them manually, or have some tools to delete them for you. In the latter case, you pay the price of your time to install the software, learn to use them, configure them, and your time to remove spams when getting your email. SpamFree tries to minimize the price you pay to fight spams -- in all respects, including minimizing your download bandwidth and time.

There are three applicable email download operation options: delete, retrieve or leave email on the server. As the result, you can retrieve what you really want ASAP, then closely exam/delete those "might-be" spams via the slow and not automated webmail interface.


Free you from other worries

SpamFree free you up in many other respects also. There will be no problem at all to use it as a cron job or in you ppp conect script. Nor there will be any problem to use it to connect to multi-pops simultaneously. Moreover, though it is powerful, it has extremely small installation footprint. So no worry about the disk space it will take. Furthermore, it does not need any compilation, and it is portable within all major platforms. Any platform that support Tcl/Expect can run it. This should include Unix, Linux, Mac and Windows. Best of all, it's free, open and actively maintained.


Tong Sun

For support requests, bug reports or patch submissions, please go to the above url.


Copyright (c) 2003 Tong SUN. All rights reserved. Freely use & distribute. Please refer to the BSD style license in source code for details.


Available at the software home url above, in the ``Feature Requests'' section.

Last updated on: Fri Dec 26 17:35:25 EST 2003

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