Ways to deal with Junk Mail (2 of 2)



Okay, in a previous post I talked about a server side solution for junk mail filtering. Now it’s time to ask…. “what if I can’t install filtering software on our mailserver?” Here is one way to deal with the answer…

Most home users have mail from their internet service provider and are at the whim of whether or not the ISP does junk filtering. At one point I was upset with my charter mail because it seemed to be too aggressive a junk filter. But, let’s say you’re getting junk mail and don’t have a mailserver that you can add software too. The answer then is either an addon for your mail program or a different mail program. Microsoft has been rather slow in implementing effective junk filtering features into their products. That’s one reason why I’ve recommended Mozilla Thunderbird to a number of users fighting junkmail.

Mozilla Thunderbird is another open source project from the makers of the Firefox web browser. It essentially has junk mail filtering tools built in. By default there is a junk folder for messages that are spam and there’s even a tool on the toolbar to classify a selected message as junk.

The one thing I’ve noticed about Thunderbird is it needs to be trained. Make sure to make a habit of skimming through the inbox messages and instead of deleting junk, tag it as junk using their toolbar. It will learn and improve it’s ability to filter it out of the inbox to start with.

There are other mail programs out there that take similar approaches to built in filtering. On the linux side, Kontact and Evolution both can interface with spamassassin to provide client side filtering. Of course, there are also many plugins for Outlook Express that can deal with junk mail as well. Thunderbird, just as Firefox is free to download and install though and might be worth a try.

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