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More spam discussion

Bayard Coolidge USG <coolidge at> writes:

> In fact, it's an amusing irony that I am now running exmh 2.5 (thanks
> to Paul Lussier's excellent talk in Nashua a couple of months ago).
> ........
> One of the bad things about much of the spam is that the message is
> in HTML, which exmh will readily display inline for me, BUT all too
> often, there are references to .gif or other decorations from an
> external site that I have to wait forever for. Or, worse yet, there's
> an inline URL that calls up a web page using a specific serial number
> as an argument, which in effect tells the server/spammer that I
> opened the message.

Exmh can be configured to defer rendering the html until you click on
the highlighted placeholder. When I get one of these in my inbox,
I usually treat it as spam and delete it unseen, without rendering
the html.

Also, by default a multipart/alternative with a text/plain and a text/html 
will render whichever part appears last in the message. In practice, this 
always the text/html, as every mail client I've seen that sends multipart/
alternative always includes the text/plain part first. However, there's a 
patch for exmh that makes it check explicitly for a text/plain part, and 
renders that by default. That should reduce the false-positives to almost

John Abreau / Executive Director, Boston Linux & Unix 
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