Still using a desktop mail client? Those smug devils with Google Mail and Hotmail are chuckling at you – guffawing as you disappear under a tsunami of spam. Well, help is at hand from SpamSieve – the Mac’s best junk mail filtering application.
Working with virtually any desktop mail application you can think of, including Mail, Entourage and Thunderbird, SpamSieve requires some setting up before you start. You launch the program then install a plug-in or script for the target mail program. You’ll also have to set up your mail client to work with SpamSieve in return. Fortunately the help documentation is clear on all counts – so you’ll soon have everything installed and running. If you rely on email for work and play, it’s well worth the effort.
The next stage is training SpamSieve. Selecting spam messages enables the program to recognise them in your inbox. You’ll find over time that the application gets smarter too – letting through less spam and flagging fewer false positives.
SpamSieve filters junk mail using several tried and tested methods. Bayesian filtering compares juxtaposed keywords in incoming messages against a dictionary of common spam combinations. This is more effective than blocking words in isolation. There’s also a blocklist built in and a white list of trusted providers. You can add and remove entries from either list and tweak the operation of the built-in filters in the main interface.
We found that SpamSieve works consistently and well with just a little training. You’ll need to keep an eye on your junk folder to begin with – in case of false positives – but these dwindle to zero in no time and you can confidently leave SpamSieve to do its job.?Your inbox has never been so minty fresh.