wtogami (wtogami) wrote,

spamassassin-3.3.0 RPM Packages for Fedora or RHEL-5

spamassassin-3.3.0 release on January 26th, 2010 by the Apache Software Foundation.  This is a very important upgrade for mail administrators as this is the first major version upgrade in nearly 3 years.  While many improvements were made to the rules, for the most part it is almost a simple matter of a drop-in replacement for spamassassin-3.2.x.  3.3.0 trunk has generally of better quality in both stability and spam detection capability than 3.2.5 for many months now. I personally have been running snapshots leading to this beta release on my production RHEL5 server since early 2009.
Picture for no particular reason except that any picture makes a blog post more interesting.

While 3.3.0 is much improved, the most exciting part of the 3.3.x series is improving upstream processes to enable more frequent rule updates, in order to better combat changing spamming patterns.
  • Rule development and auto-promotion to stable rule updates happen in the same source control, encouraging new and updated rules to land in the sa-update channel far more regularly.
  • Expanded recruitment of additional volunteers for the Nightly MassCheck.  While any volunteers willing to sort mail are helpful, non-English speakers are in high demand.  More variety of types of ham and spam used in nightly automated checks of SpamAssassin helps to improve the quality and safety of rules.  A larger sample size allows for Rescore MassChecks to happen more often, allowing for more frequent balancing of new rules and greater overall safety.  If you can sort mail into separate ham/spam folders, you can help to improve spamasssasin.

Major Changes Specific to Fedora/RHEL SpamAssassin 3.3.0 RPM Packages
  • See upstream's release notes for complete details of this new upstream release.  Many of the rules were made safer especially for a few non-English languages (Japanese and Italian tested), while many other rules were improved or added since the 3.2.x series.
  • Rule updates are now ENABLED BY DEFAULT on a nightly basis.  As of 3.3.0 upstream considers rule updates mandatory.  You may edit /etc/cron.d/sa-update if you wish to modify or disable the scheduled time where update occurs.  /usr/share/spamassassin/sa-update.cron is the script that runs.  Channel definitions are defined in .conf files contained in /etc/mail/spamassassin/channel.d/ where you can see the simple config format and make your own .conf file if you wish to add additional channels.  You will note that the script updates by default only if it sees a spamd, amavisd or mimedefang daemon running.
  • Justin Mason's SOUGHT anti-fraud channel is enabled by default for nightly updates.  From personal testing SOUGHT is the only non-default channel that I personally trust as safe and effective.  Read about its interesting auto-generation methodology.
  • Subscribe for Spamassassin RPM News at Warren's announce-only mailing list.  You will occasionally receive news and helpful tips to improve your spamassassin configuration.

Upgrade Notes (some stuff that I'm aware of that may effect Fedora or RHEL users)
  • amavisd-new-2.6.2 is the minimum compatible version with spamassassin-3.3.0.  This ticket contains a possible quick workaround to make your old version of amavis compatible.  This is only an issue for EPEL5 users which currently has an older version of amavisd-new.  Steve is aware of the issue and will be upgrading the EPEL5 version soon.
  • maia-1.0.2a is INCOMPATIBLE with spamassassin-3.3.0.  Upstream is aware of the issue and said they are working on this.
  • mimedefang versions in EPEL5 and Fedora are reportedly good.
  • STOP USING SARE or OpenProtect.  They died a long time ago.  Some of their rules are dangerous or redundant.  Many of the better rules were integrated into spamassassin upstream.

Download RPM Packages

  • Packages for Fedora 12 or Fedora 11.
  • RHEL5: I personally use these scratch builds.  You will need some new perl module dependencies from EPEL5. The plan is to push spamassassin-3.3.0 final + new perl modules to RHEL-5 sometime early 2010 after extensive testing.  But for now these are unofficial test packages.  Please file bugs if you see any problems.
  • Optional packages: These packages are not required, but they probably will improve your spam filtering results.
    • yum install perl-Mail-DKIM perl-Mail-SPF pyzor perl-Razor-Agent

File Bugs
  • SpamAssassin Bugzilla for most issues.  If you report upstream please indicate the exact package version you are running as reported by rpm -q spamassassin and where you obtained that package.
  • Red Hat Bugzilla if you are having an issue specific to my Fedora or RHEL5 package.

Subscribe for Fedora/RHEL SpamAssassin RPM News
  • Warren runs this announce-only mailing list.  You will occasionally receive news and helpful tips to improve your spamassassin configuration, or warnings of new problems and workarounds, or news about how you can help to improve spamassassin.

Help Wanted: Non-English Volunteers

  • Do you receive lots of non-English legitimate mail?  Want to help to improve SpamAssassin upstream for your language?  While we need help from speakers of any language, we especially need volunteer participants from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea or other Asian countries. 
  • Volunteering is easy, you only sort mail into folders then run a script on your folders every night in a cron job, which then uploads your logs to the central server.  Your mail remains private.
  • Contact Warren Togami or Fedora's auto-mass-check recruitment coordinator Nick Bebout if you are interested in joining.
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