Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

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tango
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Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Fri May 22, 2015 1:58 am

I'm trying out Mailwasher. Can't figure out how to export whitelists (automatically or manually). I have over a thousand whitelists emails that I can import from my previous anti-spam service, and the only reason I can do that is because the previous service let me export the list easily (a text file basically).

I thought I read somewhere that MailWasher has a similar text file but I can't find it in the user directory. If there is no straightforward way to do it, MailWasher is going to be uninstalled and the search will continue. No way I am going to be trapped into one program/service because it doesn't let me export my painstakingly created whitelists (imagine my entering 1000 entries manually if my previous service didn't let me export so easily!).

Hope I'm mistaken and there is a whitelist export ...
ataraxy
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Fri May 22, 2015 2:53 am

There is a process at http://forum.firetrust.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=16128 but there's no MailWasher function to do it.
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tango
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Fri May 22, 2015 3:23 am

Thanks, that was useful. Awkward but since it's presumably a one-time thing, it's workable.

But now I find that I can't *import* my existing whitelist either (turns out it's 4000+ entries and not 1000+). I go to Settings > Spam Tools > Friends List > Import. The screen turns grey for a second and nothing happens (not even a prompt). The popup help says "Contacts from known email programs" and I want to import a text file with one email per line.

Looks like whitelist management is not Mailwasher's strength and for me it's the most important.
ataraxy
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Fri May 22, 2015 3:46 pm

For import, you can reverse the process for importing. Again, it might be a bit fiddly, but it will work.

Make sure you adjust the friends list settings, as the default is to start expiring friends when the number goes above 2,000.
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rusticdog
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Fri May 22, 2015 4:08 pm

Yeah, not the easiest thing to do as we never added support for importing from a text file.

However, the old MailWasher 6.x used a text file, which MailWasher 7 imports from when running the Contact Importer. So my suggestion would be to take your text file, construct it in a way that makes it look like an old MW 6 file, then the import should be fine.

So first, make a copy of your text file and call it blacklist.txt (the file contained both blacklisted and friended emails)

Then add into the top of the text file this
// MailWasher Pro blacklist and friends list
//
// If you make changes to this file while MailWasher Pro is running,
// the changes will be overwritten when MailWasher Pro is closed.

[Whitelisted emails]

example@email.com
Your list of email addresses should start at the example@ ...

Then create a folder called MailWasherPro in your Appdata roaming directory.
so
C:\Users\[yourusername]\AppData\Roaming\MailWasherPro\

Put the file in there, then import in MW 7...
tango
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Fri May 22, 2015 11:46 pm

OK, seems like it would be a workable workaround, but it doesn't work. As I indicated earlier, clicking on Import under Friends List merely greys the friend list for a second and then it comes back and nothing has happened. Putting the blacklist.txt file formatted as above in C:\Documents and Settings\(username)\Application Data\Firetrust\MailWasher (I'm on XP) didn't change that. What is the latest or most stable version of MailWasher Pro that uses the old text format? Can I just download that version and use that? And other than cosmetic things and wizards and the like, what would I give up?
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rusticdog
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Fri May 22, 2015 11:49 pm

Feel free to email me the file if you want me to double check, forum@firetrust.com

The older MailWasher 6, which is no longer being actively developed, can be grabbed here http://www.firetrust.com/sites/firetrus ... -Setup.exe
It's a one off fee for that proggie, no annual sub.
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TrustFire
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Sat May 23, 2015 12:09 am

tango wrote:Looks like whitelist management is not Mailwasher's strength and for me it's the most important.
tango wrote:What is the latest or most stable version of MailWasher Pro that uses the old text format? Can I just download that version and use that? And other than cosmetic things and wizards and the like, what would I give up?
Before you downgrade from the V7 to the V6, would like you to know that; in as far as MWP is concerned, the relevance of the Friends List & Blacklist has lost all practical relevance - it is far more effective to use filters and rules, instead. :thumbsup
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tango
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Sun May 24, 2015 5:12 am

tango wrote:Looks like whitelist management is not Mailwasher's strength and for me it's the most important.
TrustFire wrote:Before you downgrade from the V7 to the V6, would like you to know that; in as far as MWP is concerned, the relevance of the Friends List & Blacklist has lost all practical relevance - it is far more effective to use filters and rules, instead. :thumbsup
Which would explain the difficulties in using them and may mean that MWP is not the right tool for me, since we disagree entirely on this fundamental premise.

I can see the argument that you could get a spam or even a virus containing email from a "friend" whose account was hacked, but it happens so rarely as to be totally insignificant (and I can look after myself in terms of not being infected by a virus attachment).

On the other hand, a false positive which may result in a friend's email being flagged as spam and depending only on my catching it in the myriad of real spam is much more likely to result in a missed email owing to a false positive. And even a rare false positive from an existing correspondent is ridiculous just conceptually.

To put it another way: If I had to go with a whitelist-only, I'd estimate that with my 4000-strong whitelist over 10+ years, I will receive perhaps 1 email per week that is non-spam from a new sender, i.e., I have to find one needle in the haystack per week. With rules-only, I would get about 10 emails per DAY that are false positive for spam, and I doubt that the filter is going to improve 70-fold by learning. So a combination is best, but for me whitelists are still the key (blacklists I don't bother with) and rules are useful in that they improve the odds of my not missing the occasional new sender in the haystack of spam. A feature that integrates with my mail client that automatically adds to the whitelist anyone I send an email to even if he is not in my contacts list (snooping on my SMTP connection or my Sent mailbox, for example) would make it that much more useful, but I haven't seen that feature in any software yet.
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TrustFire
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Sun May 24, 2015 5:23 am

You misunderstood what I meant, the same Whitelist/Blacklist can be unleashed from the Friends List/Blacklist (which you are talking about) or also from the Filters (which I was/am referring to.)

The Friends List/Blacklist section carries a far higher ratio of false positives and true negatives, as well whereas those very same Whitelist/Blacklist entries when used from from within Filters can be tweaked with a greater deal of finer granularity for utmost reliability.

The point is not about whether Whitelist/Blacklist must be used or not - rather, it is where one is using those Whitelist/Blacklist from (it is the Friends List/Blacklist which is the weak area.)

BTW personally, I do not like/use the learning feature of MWP, myself - check out the first 6 words of my signature.
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TrustFire
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Sun May 24, 2015 5:58 am

tango wrote:OK, seems like it would be a workable workaround, but it doesn't work. As I indicated earlier, clicking on Import under Friends List merely greys the friend list for a second and then it comes back and nothing has happened. Putting the blacklist.txt file formatted as above in C:\Documents and Settings\(username)\Application Data\Firetrust\MailWasher (I'm on XP) didn't change that.
Can you try again - after, copying (the Blacklist.txt duly formatted) into the following created directory, instead:--

Code: Select all

C:\Documents and Settings\ProfileName\Application Data\MailWasherPro
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Sidewinder
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Sun May 24, 2015 6:19 am

Blacklists as a general rule against individual email addresses are not effective since the true bad guys change the address constantly.
I use the Blacklist to augment my filters to mark known spamming domains that I have no interest in.

The Friends List as currently structured is only partially effective because it uses only the baseline address info e.g. xxxx@xxxx.com. The problem is that spammers frequently acquire these addresses from a variety of sources and use them without the true owners knowledge in an attempt to legitimize their spam message. You can use it as a supplement to Filters which look at the fully formed email address etc.
You can also just use the filters to ID those true friends with the fully formed email address.
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tango
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Tue May 26, 2015 9:56 am

TrustFire wrote:You misunderstood what I meant, the same Whitelist/Blacklist can be unleashed from the Friends List/Blacklist (which you are talking about) or also from the Filters (which I was/am referring to.)

The Friends List/Blacklist section carries a far higher ratio of false positives and true negatives, as well whereas those very same Whitelist/Blacklist entries when used from from within Filters can be tweaked with a greater deal of finer granularity for utmost reliability.
Indeed I had misunderstood. In fact, I didn't even realized that whitelists were used in two different ways, so I read the online documentation and it's still extremely unclear about what the difference is between activating it in the two places, and which one takes precedence if I have it set in both places.

I want to set the whitelist so that email sent from something that matches my whitelist is ALWAYS delivered and NEVER marked as spam no matter how spammy it looks (even if it IS really spam). In other words, I want it to have a score of +infinity (and not +200). Put another way, I want the whitelist to be checked first and no further checking done for that message if it's on there. (In the manual under "Using Friends Lists" it says that "Other spam tools will still be utilized to determine if an email is spam, even if the email address is on the friends list" but I don't want this as it defeats for me the purpose of a whitelist.)

So under Spam Tools > Friends List > Options I have the "Never mark for delete" box checked, and indeed it appears to work and do what I want (I haven't seen a whitelisted address marked as spam yet). I haven't touched Filters, i.e., I have no filters. So (a) what about the Filters options does this better or more reliably? and (b) How exactly does MWP treat whitelists differently in each of the two places?

And on the subject of nothing happened when I try to import my existing whitelist:
TrustFire wrote: Can you try again - after, copying (the Blacklist.txt duly formatted) into the following created directory, instead:--

Code: Select all

C:\Documents and Settings\ProfileName\Application Data\MailWasherPro
Yes, that indeed did work--thanks! :-)
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TrustFire
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Tue May 26, 2015 6:41 pm

tango wrote:In fact, I didn't even realized that whitelists were used in two different ways,
You can use it both the ways, however - for the sake of efficiency, we suggest choosing just one way (the one which you like.)

tango wrote:I haven't touched Filters, i.e., I have no filters. So (a) what about the Filters options does this better or more reliably?
You were using your entries from Spam Tools >>----> Friends List.

Entries at the above location are restricted to plain text and From e-mail IDs (inclusive of domains.)

However, those very same entries if used from Spam Tools >>----> Filters, can deliver you an amazing host of functions - please checkout the following illustration:--
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TrustFire
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Re: Exporting whitelists ("friends' list")

Tue May 26, 2015 7:45 pm

tango wrote:Put another way, I want the whitelist to be checked first and no further checking done for that message if it's on there. (In the manual under "Using Friends Lists" it says that "Other spam tools will still be utilized to determine if an email is spam, even if the email address is on the friends list" but I don't want this as it defeats for me the purpose of a whitelist.)
It is important to understand 2 salient MWP features:--
  • It starts scanning the filters from top to bottom - one at a time, and
  • It stops all further filtration the very moment it makes a hit
It is advisable to move your most preferred filters towards the top in a ranking order (as per the priority of your choice) - in your particular case, you might want to move your Filter containing the Whitelists towards the very top (as a pure example - check out the Whitelist filter illustrated below - codenamed Good.)
Whitelist_Filter_Priority.png
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tango wrote:I want to set the whitelist so that email sent from something that matches my whitelist is ALWAYS delivered and NEVER marked as spam no matter how spammy it looks (even if it IS really spam). In other words, I want it to have a score of +infinity (and not +200).
The part from the quote, highlighted in red is a pretty unusual requirement. :D

Given your specific need you may want to move your Filter containing the Blacklists towards the very bottom (as a pure example - check out the Blacklist filter illustrated above - codenamed Spam.) :thumbsup

You should however, ensure that none of the rules contained within your Blacklist (Spam) filter is created with the auto-delete option at any of the 4 levels.
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