Spam filtering for non-webmail clients?


I’m a Thunderbird IMAP user, and I’d like to set up some kind of spam filter. My goals are:

  1. Filtering is done on the server, so that it doesn’t matter where I’m running Thunderbird, or whether there might be multiple clients running simultaneously, and so that I don’t have to carefully configure every Thunderbird installation identically.

  2. Filtering happens even if I’m using Thunderbird instead of webmail, as is usually the case.

Is this possible with a Dreamhost account?

So far, this is the only article I’ve found that appears to be current:!_Junk_Mail_Filter

That article appears to refer to a feature that only applies to webmail. Is that correct? (If so, I’ll update the article to make that clearer.) I tried setting up SpamAssassin in webmail, but it seems not to have any effect when I’m using IMAP.

There are some older articles that talk about using procmail - this would be ideal for me, and I’m willing to invest some time in setting it up manually. Does anyone know if this is still possible? Or whether there are any other server-based solutions that work with IMAP? If not… well, that would be the first serious strike against Dreamhost that I’ve seen, and it would send me investigating other ISPs.

If there isn’t a solution that meets both of my goals, what other options do I have? I’m more willing to give up on goal (1) than goal (2) - in other words, I’ll use a client-side filter if I have to, but I won’t switch to using webmail. If I do use a client-side filter, does anyone have recommendations for what to use with Thunderbird? In particular, I’m curious how client-side filtering will work if there are multiple clients connected simultaneously. I’m also curious about the quality of various filters, including how well they learn from training data.

Many thanks,
Deneb Meketa,
Berkeley, CA.


No that is not correct. Also, its already clear: “Mail comes in and gets scanned by the anti-spam machine. If it’s okay, it gets passed on to your normal mail servers and goes in your INBOX.” That has nothing to do with webmail.

However if mail is quarantined it can either be delivered to a subfolder or kept in a database. If it is kept in a database, you have to use a separate function to read the quarantined messages and/or take action on them. DreamHost maintains its own Squirrelmail webmail client and has modified it to provide a link to the messages in the database. You get to chose whether or not you want quarantined messages in the database or subfolder.

Also since the junk mail filter is maintained by DreamHost, they provide a web interface to the settings you are allowed to change.

You’re free to host the web site at DreamHost and have your e-mail hosted elsewhere, such as with Google, since you can change the MX records. Other than it appears what you want is a dedicated e-mail server which is not something that is offered.

This is no longer an ideal solution due to restrictions in place to help prevent spam. The problem is that there are quotas on how many messages can be processed and the procmail solution effectively doubles the number (forward to shell, then forward to mailbox). Not to mention putting additional load on servers meant for running web sites might cause you to be flagged for resource abuse (unless you get this to run on DreamHostPS instead of shared hosting).

Customer since 2000 :cool: | Please don’t feed the trolls. :@