EndLayer Recommends Top Spam Filters for Mac and Windows

Published May 30th, 2014 by Michael Farin

Fun bit of trivia for you: did you know that computer spam actually gets its name from Monty Python’s Spamalot?

Sadly, there’s nothing else fun about spam. You hate it, your clients hate it and the entire IT and development staff at EndLayer hates it. Down with spam!

To help fight the influx of annoying, unsolicited junk email, we’ve decided to put together a post on the best spam filters for the Mac and Windows operating systems. No matter which OS you favor, the EndLayer team has got you covered.

If you missed the first three posts in our “EndLayer Guide to Spam” series, you can read them here, here and here.

Windows Spam Filters:

Here are some of our top spam filter picks for Windows users.

1.   POPFile. This is a flexible, powerful NNTP and POP proxy, very good at filtering spam and correctly filing good messages. Be aware, though, it can use up a good chunk of memory and CPUs if you have it trained on a lot of mail.    
2.   Spamfence  Spamfence is a great filtering service that protects against spam and viruses. Be aware: Spamfence does rely on a forwarding function, so you’ll need two different email accounts.

3.   MailWasher Pro Another combination virus and spam barrier, MailWasher Pro combines multiple approaches in order to detect spam and filter a number of threats. (It’s very secure, another plus.) Sometimes it has a bit of trouble integrating comfortably with email programs, though, so be forewarned.)

4.   K9 Remember those complex Bayesian filtering tools we were talking about in our earlier post? K9 is one of the best: precise, simple and a very quick “learner.” It does only work with POP accounts, however, and it does not include remote admin functions.

5.   SpamBayes Another Bayesian tool that relies on complex content analysis and algorithms to detect spam. We really can’t find anything bad to say about this one.

Mac Spam Filters:

You’d think the Mac OS would have evolved beyond spam at this point. Sadly, not so. Here are a few of EndLayer’s recommendations for Mac spam filters.

1. SpamSieve Superior Bayesian filtering for Mac OS X email clients. It’s just as simple as the junk filters on Mac Mail, and gives you the added bonus of statistics.  

2. SpamSweep  Precision spam detection and an interface that’s incredibly easy to use? Yes, please. (It’s a pity this filter doesn’t include a POP proxy mode, and that it’s a slightly slow processor. Otherwise, it would be perfect.)

3. POPFile Remember this one from earlier, on the Windows list? It’s a powerful, versatile POP and NNTP proxy that’s a pro at filtering spam and sorting out good mail. Just like the Windows version, however, POPFile does use up a lot of memory, so be aware.  

4. Spamfence Spam filtering plus virus protection? Sounds like a winner. As with the Windows version, it does require two email accounts for forwarding – something that’s not an issue, of course, if you have your own domain.

5. Spamfire Spamfire Another high-powered Bayesian tool that analyzes email contents and compares them to other spam and legitimate messages in order to categorize them properly. Our only problem with this one is that it could integrate a bit better with email clients, and it could move a bit faster. (Dream on.)

Well, there you go. On behalf of the EndLayer team, we hope you find that information useful.

To learn more on the basic types of spam filters, you can check out our post here! We’ll be writing more in our “Endlayer Guide to Spam” series, so stay tuned. 

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