04 Jun 2004, 02:48

No, I do not need your dubiously spelled prescription medication, thank you very much.

Brett’s recent post on the horrors of spam and the need for advanced filtering tools reminded me that I’d been meaning to mention my own spam filtering set up that I switched to several weeks ago. I’ve been using Popfile in addition to Outclass (which integrates it into Outlook 2002) and I love it. Previously I’d been using SpamFighter, which was decent but no longer had a free version, at least not one without ads. Popfile uses Bayesian filtering which definitely seems to be the way to go. It wasn’t too bad right after installing it, but after training it by reclassifying what it missed for a while it’s become nearly unstoppable. I’d say that I average maybe 20-30 pieces of spam per day and out of that maybe 1 per week makes it through. False positives were a bit of a problem, but again its gotten much much better by learning. Unfortunately, no matter how reliable a filter is with false positives I still feel the need to scan my junk folder from time to time just to check, which sort of defeats the purpose a little.


Comment by Tobin on 2004-06-04 07:59:13 +0000

Have you tried Mozilla Thunderbird yet? I really like it a lot, and it has some nice spam filtering built in.

Comment by Will on 2004-06-05 09:19:56 +0000

No, I haven’t tried that yet. Does it use Bayesian filtering? I’m all about the Bayesians.

Comment by Neal on 2004-06-05 10:13:27 +0000

Thunderbird does have bayesian filtering, although I can’t compare it performance-wise to popfile’s because I don’t get any spam anyway. I do know that it is a lot simpler in both good and bad ways. (It just does spam/not spam, but it’s easier to use and set up (there is no set-up) and everything).

Probably not worth switching, since you already have popfile set up nice (unless you wanted to cast off the taint of Microsoft).

Firefox/Thunderbird are all about the clean UIs and lack of confusing options, but they still manage to pack some powerful features. Personally I don’t think you can find more friendly software outside of Mac-land.