REVIEW: "Slamming Spam: A Guide for System Administrators", Robert Haskins/Dale Nielsen
- BKSLMSPM.RVW 20071110
"Slamming Spam: A Guide for System Administrators", Robert
Haskins/Dale Nielsen, 2005, 0-13-146716-6, U$44.99/C$64.99
%A Robert Haskins www.slammingspam.com
%A Dale Nielsen
%C P.O. Box 520, 26 Prince Andrew Place, Don Mills, Ontario M3C 2T8
%I Addison-Wesley Publishing Co.
%O U$44.99/C$64.99 fax: 416-443-0948 800-822-6339 bkexpress@...
%O Audience i Tech 2 Writing 1 (see revfaq.htm for explanation)
%P 396 p.
%T "Slamming Spam: A Guide for System Administrators"
For once the title means no more or less than it says. The authors
state, in the preface, that the book is intended as a reference for
administrators to use as a "how to" guide to stop spam. Well,
possibly not stop it entirely, but to use widely known and available
tools for mail transfer agents that can seriously reduce the level of
the problem. The authors assume little about the reader's familiarity
with Linux or UNIX, even though most of the tools discussed are for
Chapter one is a brief introduction to email entities and components,
with a list and description of anti-spam technologies. There is also
a discussion of policies and the likely level of user acceptance of
both policies and functions. Procmail, a utility that can be used by
a variety of anti-spam applications, is explained in chapter two. The
multi-function SpamAssassin program is examined in chapter three.
Chapter four outlines anti-spam functions that are built into common
mail transfer agents. Various systems for authentication of users,
and authorization to use SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) are
discussed in chapter five. Chapter six notes the advantages of
Distributed Checksum Filtering (DCF). (This may not be as widely
known among administrators of single systems, since it relies on the
collection of calculated signatures of spam messages, gathered from a
number of mail servers. It is more widely used by systems that
provide mail services to a large number of clients.) Bayesian
filtering is introduced in chapter seven, and chapter eight follows up
with details of the installation and use of a few such programs.
Various client filtering applications are described in chapter nine.
Spam related functions of the Microsoft Exchange mail server are noted
in chapter ten, with Lotus Domino and Lotus Notes covered in chapter
eleven. Chapter twelve examines sender verification. This is not
quite the same material as is covered in chapter five, since we are
not looking for specific authorization, but an intelligent response
indicating that the entity sending the mail is a user and not a bot.
The book, while not exciting, is a clear and useful guide to tools
that will be of value to system administrators who wish to reduce
overall spam levels.
copyright Robert M. Slade, 2007 BKSLMSPM.RVW 20071110
====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
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For years we have been saying you could not get a virus just by
opening E-Mail. That bug is being fixed. - A. Padgett Peterson