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uk.telecom.broadband (UK broadband) (uk.telecom.broadband) Discussion of broadband services, technology and equipment as provided in the UK. Discussions of specific services based on ADSL, cable modems or other broadband technology are also on-topic. Advertising is not allowed.

User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?



 
 
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  #1  
Old June 12th 09, 02:34 AM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
Jeremy Nicoll - news posts
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 18
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

Does anyone know of any ISPs who allow users to define versatile filters for
mails?

Lots seem to allow simple filters, eg on who a mail came from or who it is
addressed to. But I'm looking for somewhere where one can use boolean logic
to link several tests together, and tests that can involve regex, and access
by those tests to all the headers in each mail as well as info like how big
each mail is...


--
Jeremy C B Nicoll - my opinions are my own.

Email sent to my from-address will be deleted. Instead, please reply
to replacing "nnn" by "284".
  #2  
Old June 12th 09, 03:55 AM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
The Natural Philosopher
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Posts: 2,728
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

Jeremy Nicoll - news posts wrote:
Does anyone know of any ISPs who allow users to define versatile filters for
mails?

Lots seem to allow simple filters, eg on who a mail came from or who it is
addressed to. But I'm looking for somewhere where one can use boolean logic
to link several tests together, and tests that can involve regex, and access
by those tests to all the headers in each mail as well as info like how big
each mail is...


Claranet certainly does more than most, but not all you want.

Since you cant see their info without an account..here is the help page

Note that you don't need to use them as transport to use their mail
hosting services. You can simply set up your own domain as a clarahost
package. By and large I find the hosting service is better than their
transport service. I will likely switch to IDNET for that, but retain
the hosting on claranet.


Mail filters allow you to selectively process incoming email. When you
define a filter you specify how messages are to be selected and what is
to be done with the selected messages. Creating filters generates a
filter file which is read by the mail delivery
agent (mail server) which allows you to:

Deliver: normal delivery of the message

Drop: the email is silently dropped, no bounce

Forward: normal delivery, also copied to the address(es) specified in
the argument column

Redirect: message is not delivered to the mailbox, and is only copied to
the address(es) specified in the argument column.

Sms: forward header information to a mobile phone (maximum 160 characters)

Vacation: send an auto response you can specify

When you have logged in you will see five fields where you can input
information. The first three of these allow you to select which messages
will be acted on; the other two allow you to specify what action to
perform on them.

First you need to set which messages will be acted on, so select which
mail header you want to create a filter for.

E.g. the "from: header" might be used if you want to filter out spam.
Next select what criteria you want to set for the filter i.e. contains,
doesn't contain, matches regex. (stands for regular expression).

Taking an example of deleting emails from a particular source e.g. spam
coming from :

The header should be set to "from", the next column should be set to
"contains" and the third field should contain the email address to block
i.e.
. Select the action to perform, e.g. "delete it" or
"redirect to" - the address to forward to in this case goes into the
fifth and last field, then click on add.

You can create as many filters as you like.

The same idea can be applied to the: to, from, cc, subject, any, content
or RBL (stands for Real Time Blacklisting) headers of a mail message.

Deleting filters is straightforward - click on delete for the
appropriate filter to completely remove it. You do not need to delete it
if you think you may want to use it again later. These rules can be
activated or deactivated by using the "Active" tick box on the left side
of each of these filters.


Email Forwarding and Redirection

The difference between the two is that with forwarding, the message is
delivered as normal to the original (recipient) address as well as a
copy being generated and sent to the forwarding address. With
redirection, the message is not delivered to the original address, only
to the redirection address.

To forward to another address you can do the following:

Select header: "To", that "Matches Regex", ".", "Forward to", and lastly
the address to forward to "

Alternatively, if you only wanted emails from a particular address, or
concerning a particular subject, you could use:

Select header: "From" or "Subject", that "Contains", "string to match",
"Forward to" and then "

A couple of things you would need to be aware of - first is that as long
as the string is matched, that message will be selected. Hence setting
"From", "Contains" and will select messages from
but also and also . Also, if
you know how to use the "Matches Regex" option, you should be aware that
some characters have special meanings such as: . * ? + and if you want
to use them literally, you must put a \ before them.

E.g. to select all emails from a particular domain you could select
"matches regex" and " with \ in front of the dot as a dot is a
reserved character.


Email Responders/Vacation Messages

To send a vacation message, select an appropriate header (e.g. to send a
vacation message to anyone sending you a message, you could select "any"
header), that "matches regex", again put a "." in the next field, "send
vacation message" then click on Add. This will add the filter and give
you another option which is to "edit vacation message". Click on this
and then add your message (which does not have to be vacation related -
just any automated response message) and then click on Save.


SMS Messages

These too can be set up from within mail filters.

SMS service is currently available to customers with a Freetime or One
for All type account and is operational when a call balance already
exists. Customers who wish to use SMS can use the online facility at
customer.clara.net to authorize a ï10 call balance charge or to top up
their existing balance. There is a charge of 10p for each individual
message.

SMS can be set from the mail filters option:

As an example, if you wanted to send yourself an sms message to alert
when a message from a particular sender has arrived, select header
"From", that "Contains", ", "send sms message to" and then
the phone number to send the message to in the last field. Then click on
Add and it is done

RBL

Claranet's mail servers check incoming connections against some public
databases which contain details of computers which are used to send spam
(Realtime Blocking Lists). If a server is listed in one of these
databases, Claranet adds a header to your email of the form
"X-RBL-Warning: 123.123.123.123 is listed at xyz...". You may elect to
filter messages based on these headers.

For example, to drop mail which is listed in Spamcop, select header
"RBL", that "contains", "spamcop", "delete it". Then click on Add.

Sender Verification

Claranet's mail servers check whether they would be able to deliver
bounce messages to the senders of messages. Some spam is sent with
addresses which don't exist, so Claranet adds a header to messages which
we wouldn't be able to return to the sender, to help highlight such
messages. The header is "X-Sender-Verification-Failed: Bounce messages
would not reach ".

Some legitimate mail servers are misconfigured and cause this check to
be triggered for legitimate email addresses. For this reason we
recommend you don't delete email that matches this header, but perhaps
redirect it to another address for checking at intervals.

For example, to redirect mail which it would not be possible to bounce,
select header "Sender Verification", that "exists", "redirect to",
". Then click on Add.



clara.net.

  #3  
Old June 14th 09, 01:24 AM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
Jeremy Nicoll - news posts
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 18
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

The Natural Philosopher wrote:

Claranet certainly does more than most, but not all you want.


Thank-you for taking the time to reply with all this info.

In the page you quoted, it says of the headers that can be tested:

The same idea can be applied to the: to, from, cc, subject, any,
content or RBL (stands for Real Time Blacklisting) headers of
a mail message.


Do you know if by 'to' they really do mean 'to:' or whether one can test the
SMTP envelope-to value? Generally I regard 'to:' filters as worthless.


I guess that one can achieve a test for any other header type by using an
'any' test with 'match regex' test and a pattern which actually specifies
the header-type as the first part of the pattern. Do you know if that's the
case?


Also, do you know if filter precedence/order is definable?


--
Jeremy C B Nicoll - my opinions are my own.

Email sent to my from-address will be deleted. Instead, please reply
to replacing "nnn" by "284".
  #4  
Old June 14th 09, 10:14 AM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
The Natural Philosopher
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,728
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

Jeremy Nicoll - news posts wrote:
The Natural Philosopher wrote:

Claranet certainly does more than most, but not all you want.


Thank-you for taking the time to reply with all this info.

In the page you quoted, it says of the headers that can be tested:

The same idea can be applied to the: to, from, cc, subject, any,
content or RBL (stands for Real Time Blacklisting) headers of
a mail message.


Do you know if by 'to' they really do mean 'to:' or whether one can test the
SMTP envelope-to value? Generally I regard 'to:' filters as worthless.

I think both actually.


I guess that one can achieve a test for any other header type by using an
'any' test with 'match regex' test and a pattern which actually specifies
the header-type as the first part of the pattern. Do you know if that's the
case?


Also, do you know if filter precedence/order is definable?



Sorry,you are running off the edge of my knowledge here.


  #5  
Old June 14th 09, 12:01 PM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
Tony
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

On Sun, 14 Jun 2009 09:14:11 +0100, The Natural Philosopher
opined:



Also, do you know if filter precedence/order is definable?



Sorry,you are running off the edge of my knowledge here.


Yes, the filters are processed in order, and once a match is found, no
further filters are processed.

--
Tony )
  #6  
Old June 14th 09, 07:30 PM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
Alex Fraser
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 553
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

Jeremy Nicoll - news posts wrote:
The Natural Philosopher wrote:
Claranet certainly does more than most, but not all you want.

[snip]
In the page you quoted, it says of the headers that can be tested:

The same idea can be applied to the: to, from, cc, subject, any,
content or RBL (stands for Real Time Blacklisting) headers of
a mail message.

Do you know if by 'to' they really do mean 'to:' or whether one can test the
SMTP envelope-to value?


I would imagine it means the "To" header. Likewise "from" means the
"From" header, as opposed to the envelope sender.

Sometimes there is a header which has the envelope recipient in it, eg
"X-Original-To".

Generally I regard 'to:' filters as worthless.


OTOH, applying rules on the envelope recipient is pointless except if
the same set of rules is applied to multiple envelope recipients (eg
some kind of mailbox aliasing).

Alex
  #7  
Old June 15th 09, 12:20 AM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
stephen
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 381
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

On Fri, 12 Jun 2009 01:34:05 +0100, Jeremy Nicoll - news posts
wrote:

Does anyone know of any ISPs who allow users to define versatile filters for
mails?

Lots seem to allow simple filters, eg on who a mail came from or who it is
addressed to. But I'm looking for somewhere where one can use boolean logic
to link several tests together, and tests that can involve regex, and access
by those tests to all the headers in each mail as well as info like how big
each mail is...


maybe you need to do your own filtering once the mail gets past the
basic ISP filters?

mailwasher pro is one of several utilities which work with the ISP
inbox or integrate into a mail program to allow you to do your own
filtering:
www.mailwasher.com
--
Regards

- replace xyz with ntl
  #8  
Old June 15th 09, 12:34 AM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
Jeremy Nicoll - news posts
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 18
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

Alex Fraser wrote:

Jeremy Nicoll - news posts wrote:


Generally I regard 'to:' filters as worthless.


OTOH, applying rules on the envelope recipient is pointless


I don't understand that, since envelope recipient determines who the
specific mail is actually for (whereas 'to' only tells you who the sender
wants you to think it was addressed to).

'to:' will contain nothing relevant for most mails from mail lists and often
nothing relevant on BCCed mails.

except if the same set of rules is applied to multiple envelope recipients
(eg some kind of mailbox aliasing).


Ah... Maybe your first comment was written from the pov of someone with only
a single email address (and presumably then just one mailbox). I have
several hundred addresses to cope with. Some ISPs say the way to cope with
this is to define a mailbox on their server for each address, but I do not
want to have to maintain a set of mailboxes in sync with the addresses.

I'd prefer to define a modest number of mailboxes (for classes of address) &
use regex-based filters to assign incoming mails to the relevant mailbox.
It's important though that I can override some of the generic filters if and
when required.

There are patterns of character usage within the addresses that make sense
to me, & would be susceptible to regex testing, thus making it unnecessary
to have one filter & one mailbox per in-use address.

--
Jeremy C B Nicoll - my opinions are my own.

Email sent to my from-address will be deleted. Instead, please reply
to replacing "nnn" by "284".
  #9  
Old June 15th 09, 01:29 AM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
Jeremy Nicoll - news posts
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 18
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

Stephen wrote:

maybe you need to do your own filtering once the mail gets past the
basic ISP filters?


mailwasher pro is one of several utilities which work with the ISP
inbox or integrate into a mail program to allow you to do your own
filtering: www.mailwasher.com


Thanks for the link.

At the moment I fetch some mail via my email client's built-in POP3 fetcher,
but unfortunately there's a bug that breaks some fetches, and the fetcher is
not configurable to - say - fetch only 5 mails at a time, or skip those
above a certain size (so that the bulk of the smaller ones can be fetched
first).

I also run a highly configurable rules-based fetcher (and in some cases
deleter of spam) somewhat like MW. It is written in BASIC (so is easily
changed if needed) and runs under an emulator under Windows. It's slow, not
least because the emulator needs started up first.


I've been hoping that finding an ISP which will allow more versatile (but
generic regex-based) filtering will allow me to categorise 'classes' of
mails into multiple mailboxes.

I'm also still looking for a standalone Windows POP3 fetcher which can be
configured to nibble away at downloading, rather than attempt to do all
outstanding fetches in one POP3 session.


--
Jeremy C B Nicoll - my opinions are my own.

Email sent to my from-address will be deleted. Instead, please reply
to replacing "nnn" by "284".
  #10  
Old June 15th 09, 08:34 PM posted to uk.telecom.broadband
alexd
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,765
Default User-configurable mail-filtering on ISPs' servers?

Jeremy Nicoll - news posts wrote:

I'm also still looking for a standalone Windows POP3 fetcher which can be
configured to nibble away at downloading, rather than attempt to do all
outstanding fetches in one POP3 session.


This might be worth a look: http://unixmail-w32.sourceforge.net/
If you're used to handling mail with a BASIC interpreter, then you won't
balk at Cygwin and Perl!

Also: http://search.cpan.org:80/~jv/Mail-P...il/Procmail.pm

and:

http://cygwin.com/cgi-bin2/package-g...?grep=procmail

If you can't do it with procmail or Mail::Procmail and perl, it probably
can't be done.

--
http://ale.cx/ (AIM:troffasky) )
19:24:20 up 40 days, 47 min, 2 users, load average: 0.13, 0.12, 0.09
A few flakes working together can unleash an avalanche of destruction


 




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