[spambayes-dev] Thought on mass hosting spambayes....

Michael C. Neel neel at mediapulse.com
Tue Aug 3 17:12:59 CEST 2004

I'm emailing the list to get ideas on how spambayes could be used in a
mass email hosting setup, as an ISP would have.  There wound/t be much
trouble in setting up seperate sb databases per email account using
existing methods already found in sb code, such as the mysql/sql
option.  Filtering can occur on the smtp recieve side, placing a header
to be filtered by the client (or subject line).  This is the easy part.

The hard part is the training.  I'll assume it's generally accepted that
for spambayes to be effective, training must be done on a per account
basis.  One man's spam is another man's ham after all.  So we need a
training interface to handle a mass hosting setup that is per account.

It gets worse though.  IMAP folders could help here, but an ISP does not
want users saving mail on the server.  Also, support needs to be low, so
I'm not sure expecting users to view source and cut and paste into a web
app will be the answer either.

Most email client support some form of 'forward as redirect', in which
the message is sent again with a new envlope.  The brainstorming here
has gone down the road of some type of email account that does training,
i.e. a ham at isp.com and a spam at isp.com.  the smtp server for these
accounts would require authencation to prevent real spammers from using
them, and also to tie the sender to an account and database for
training.  Using the forward as redirect, the user trains his database. 
I'm also thinking it would also be possible to detect if the user did
not forward as a redirect, but instead did a normal forward, because
there would be no recieved headers, and there would also be no spambayes
headers, so we could reject the message for training and prevent the
user from incorrectly training his account.

We would want a basic online application for the user to tune his
spambayes preferences, but again this isn't much to do and is really
just working with exiting code and interfaces.  I think if spambayes had
a solution for the mail server in a mass hosting, it would get alot of
use by ISPs who constantly hear spam complaints from users.  Current
commercial options are too costly and don't provide the results
spambayes can.  Current open source server solutons also don't compare
with spambayes in results.

I'm interested in hearing back thoughts, and open to other interface
ideas.  I'm ready to start coding away on the solution, but I want to be
sure in the solution before I start =).


michael.neel at mediapulse.com
vice president of information systems
865.675.4455 x30

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