Projects / The SpamBouncer

The SpamBouncer

The SpamBouncer is a set of procmail instructions that search the headers and text of your incoming email to see if it meets one or more of a list of conditions for probable spam. It will then either tag the suspected spam and return it to your main incoming mailbox, tag the suspected spam, delete spam from known spam sources, and file suspected spam in a separate folder, send a simulated MAILER-DAEMON daemon "bounce", complain to the "upstream providers" of known spammers or spam sites/domains, etc.


Recent releases

  •  21 Nov 2005 09:26

    Release Notes: New features include the possibility to check the retired spammers list, autoreporting to SpamCop, finer grain control of reverse-DNS-lookup-based scoring of spam, support for new blocklists, easy bundling of minimal default options for quick-starting new users, and more. Usual housekeeping updates were performed.

    •  19 Nov 2004 22:08

      Release Notes: Regular houskeeping updates (haven domains, spam sources, and identified spammers) were made. The bug when the spam bouncer caused a procmail crash on extremely large email messages was fixed. The default procmail.rc template has increased the LINEBUF to 8192; please incorporate this in your .procmailrc.

      •  26 Aug 2004 15:25

        Release Notes: Minor bugs were fixed. The usual housekeeping updates were made to the lists of haven domains, spam sources, spam phone numbers, and identified spammers.

        •  17 Aug 2004 14:40

          Release Notes: Minor bugs were fixed, so now more spam can be caught. Regular houskeeping updates were done (free haven domains, small fry, etc.). Newly identified spammers were added. (Notably, the "Australian porn mafia" is now being caught.)

          •  02 Aug 2004 09:51

            Release Notes: Updates were applied to virus filters, spam sources, spam haven domains, small fry, and other basic filters. SURBLCHECK was obsoleted in favor of other variables that allow the selection of a finer-grained usage policy for the SURBL blocklist. Minor bugs were fixed.

            Recent comments

            24 Feb 2008 21:11 rajceeri

            Spambouncer Status

            The spambouncer site news ( indicates the last release to be dated April 16, 2006 version 2.2 and 2.3 beta.

            I understand that Catherine Hampton (Ariel) author of spambouncer has since got married and appears to have put spambouncer on "hold".

            26 Jul 2006 08:10 TheGolem

            Need Updates
            A lot of spam is beginning to get through even with my additional procmail recipes and these are usually caught with the updates. I wonder if Catherine is sick or giving up the project or just behind on this? Does anyone know? I really don't want to install spamassassin on my server. I use it on another server and while it works well, it takes a lot of the control away from me whereas spambouncer provides so many ways to control and filter manually that it just puts me in the driver's seat and I prefer that.

            Anybody know what is going on with Catherine?


            07 Mar 2006 10:07 brainchild

            3 months no update?
            Anyone happen to know what's going on with SpamBouncer? The last update is 2005-12-22, and it's now nearly 3 months later. I'm worried something may have happened to Catherine. Anyone have any news?

            02 Mar 2006 12:36 SallyShears

            SpamBouncer is Terrific
            I'm just a little confused about spambouncer here on freshmeat vs., but I want to say that SpamBouncer is just terrific.

            I depend on Catherine's frequent updates and I have added a few procmail recipies of my own. In particular, SpamBouncer helps by checking lists of URLs mentioned in spams. I'm seeing a few false positives (msgs with links to cgi scripts named ?.exe for example), but it's doing a great job here.

            Thanks, Catherine, for SpamBouncer.

            04 Jul 2004 13:35 BACbKA

            freshmeat subscribers of SpamBouncer: thanks for your patience
            Due to various personal reasons (and hence a lack of time) I couldn't devote enough resources to beta-testing and announcing spambouncer updates. Hopefully, it's back to normal effective immediately. (My policy is to announce it on freshmeat only once I have checked the major source code differences and tested it on my site, unless it is marked upstream as an "urgent fix"). BTW, happy holiday to the U.S. readers...


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