Don't use MailWasher... sorry

Hope nobody actually bought MailWasher Pro due to my recommendation in this forum since I now have to withdraw that recommendation. :oops:

The reason is the current Swen worm attack. MailWasher is completely helpless to handle this attack. Most of the time it fails to identify worm mails, and when it does (by consulting its spam ID servers) it automatically bounces the worms – which is completely pointless since the senders are all forged.

Even better, FireTrust’s home page shouts “Newsflash! Stop the SoBig.F worm with MailWasher Pro.” but when you go to the product page, sure enough, it’s the same old software of 9 June 2003 that can’t handle the worm – as evidenced by posts on their own forum. What’s worse, hackers or blatantly false advertising?

Anyway, the paid version of Eudora now includes a junk mail scanner that reliably identifies worm mails. Combined with my ISP’s virus filter which strips the executable attachments, that’s good enough for now.

Mailwasher has always had this problem that the bounce “feature” is broken by design. It’s a bad idea that simply does not work. And no amount of persuasive argument from knowledgeable technical people fighting spam has been able to convince the author of Mailwasher that this “feature” is a bad idea and makes a bad problem worse.

If you want to filter out spam, look at something like Pop File or SpamBayes. They filter out spam and as an added bonus, they are free.

edit: What in the fruit is going on with these URLs!!!

All urls must start with a www, or they won’t work.

Well that’s fucked! Not all web sites start with “www”.

Obviously. :)

You can still get links by starting with http://, but you can’t embed the links like you were trying to do.

Actually it was a pretty nice feature 1-2 years ago when I started using the program (then freeware). Spammers used to have actual return addresses, and bouncing could trick the address collectors into thinking your address wasn’t valid.

Unfortunately these days few spammers use valid return addresses anymore, and of course none of the virus/worm programs does…

The biggest problem right now is that the program doesn’t offer any option to reliably NOT bounce tagged mail. Any mail tagged by the spam database automatically gets bounced, and that’s just stupid.

If you want to filter out spam, look at something like Pop File or SpamBayes. They filter out spam and as an added bonus, they are free.

Looks like I don’t need another solution right now, I’m very pleased with Eudora 6.0 and its new “learning” junk filter. The filter recognised most worms “out of the box”, and learns whenever you junk or un-junk misplaced mail. Now I just got one valid e-mail among 800 worms, and Eudora filtered it out with only two false negatives. The program can also leave e-mail on the server so that it can be deleted without downloading, just like MailWasher.

I’ve read some reports about it. I’m using an older version of Eudora, plus Pop File already has learned what is and isn’t junk for me so I don’t feel like going through it again with Eudora. Pop File acts as a POP3 proxy so it usable with any POP3 client, for those who decide they much prefer Outlook Express (goodness knows why). And if you upgrade/switch mail clients, there’s no hassle.

That’s why it’s crashing on me…

Does Eudora use bayesian algorithms for its “learning” ability? I’m guessing that’s the most likely method, but I’m always curious what alternatives there are that are as malleable.

Lots of discussion of bayesian filtering over at

By the way, why are the urls so borked? I run a version of phpBB2 at work and it works fine…

Does the fact that I drool over Bayesian algorithms cement my status as a geek?

No, but the fact that you would make another post just to try and draw attention to your earlier post about it cements your status as a dork.

I am very malleable. And a bit squishy.

I actually use Spamnix ( with Eudora 6.0, rather than the built-in Spam blocker. It does use Bayesian filtering, and after a week or so of training it does an amazing job. Catches the vast majority of Spam, and more importantly, after the first couple of days I’ve had no false positives.