SUBJECT LINE: Exchange & Outlook UPDATE, Exchange Edition, May 2, 2003
Exchange and Outlook UPDATE, Exchange Edition--brought to you by Exchange & Outlook Administrator, a print newsletter from Windows & .NET Magazine that contains practical advice, how-to articles, tips, and techniques to help you do your job today. http://www.exchangeadmin.com
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May 2, 2003 -- In this issue:
- New Hope in the Spam Battle?
- Windows & .NET Magazine Connections: Win a Florida Vacation
- Sample Our Security Administrator Newsletter!
- Configuring Exchange 2000 to Receive Mail from Multiple Domains
- Featured Thread: IS Corruption and Spam Filter
- Results of Last Month's Instant Poll: New Exchange Features
- New Instant Poll: Dealing with Spam
4. NEW AND IMPROVED
- Build Distribution Lists from External Databases
- Submit Top Product Ideas
5. CONTACT US
See this section for a list of ways to contact us.
(contributed by Paul Robichaux, News Editor, [email protected])
* NEW HOPE IN THE SPAM BATTLE?
A plethora of antispam products exist; some integrate with the client, some offer hosted services, and some run on a server. All the products have one thing in common, though: They're largely reactive. A year ago, who could have predicted the extent to which spammers would falsify subject lines and use messages made up entirely of images? And who knows what the spammers will be up to next year? As spammers change their tactics, antispam tools must add new filters, and you must take the time to update your protection if you want to continue to block spam messages. Some promising new developments in the war on spam are in the works, though, and they raise the possibility that more proactive approaches to spam fighting might soon be available.
First is the announcement that AOL, MSN, and Yahoo! have joined forces to fight spam by beefing up enforcement of consumer protection laws, hardening their services to make them more difficult for spammers to use, and providing better filters. These three companies have historically been unable to agree on anything, but perhaps fighting spam is a goal important enough to cause them to form an alliance that will bear fruit.
Second is the rise of some new methods for detecting spam. Bayesian analysis is a fascinating branch of statistics that can help a filter "learn" how to tell which messages are spam and which aren't. Products that implement Bayesian filtering require training (i.e., you must initially input a certain amount of data) but tend to be highly accurate once fed a large enough corpus of data, and extending their training to recognize new classes of spam is as simple as feeding messages of those types into the filter. In a similar vein, services that let one client report a message as spam so that other clients can block the same (or similar) messages are gaining in popularity. The efficacy of these services depends on the number of mailboxes they filter, so such services will continue to grow in effectiveness as they catch on with users.
Third is the rise of new legislation (although generally I'm not a big fan of government-mandated solutions, especially when the problem relates to the global Internet, I make an exception in the case of spam). A proposed law, for example, would require spammers to include a subject-line tag on their messages and would offer a bounty to people who successfully track down spammers who fail to comply. In this scheme, the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) would be able to sue spammers who break the law, and whoever does the legwork necessary to track down such criminals would get 20 percent of the fine. Not a bad deal, although the law still has some rough edges.
Do these advances mean we can relax? Unfortunately, not yet. Even with such measures in effect, you still need to be vigilant about filtering spam on your servers, both to protect your storage and messaging resources and to spare your users unnecessary hassle. However, I hope that at least one of these new developments will make life easier for us in the long run. In the meantime, keep updating those filters!
(brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine and its partners)
* WINDOWS & .NET MAGAZINE CONNECTIONS: WIN A FLORIDA VACATION
Register now for this exclusive opportunity to learn in-person from your favorite writers you know and trust. All attendees will receive a free 1-year subscription to Windows & .NET Magazine, plus a chance to win a Florida vacation for two. Connections is simply the best lineup of technical training for today's Windows IT professional. Register now:
* SAMPLE OUR SECURITY ADMINISTRATOR NEWSLETTER!
If you spend the better part of your day dealing with security concerns such as controlling user access, viruses, and tightening your network's permeability, then you can benefit from the type of information we publish each month in Security Administrator. Every issue shows you how to protect your enterprise with informative, in-depth articles, timely tips, and practical advice. Sample our most recent issue today!
* CONFIGURING EXCHANGE 2000 TO RECEIVE MAIL FROM MULTIPLE DOMAINS
Each week, Microsoft posts several Exchange Server how-to articles to its Knowledge Base. This week, learn how to configure an Exchange 2000 Server system to receive email from multiple domains.
* FEATURED THREAD: IS CORRUPTION AND SPAM FILTER
Within a day of installing a spam filter on two Exchange Server machines, a forum reader's backup process showed corrupted Information Stores (ISs). The reader wonders whether anyone else has run into such trouble. To offer your advice or join the discussion, go to the following URL:
* RESULTS OF LAST MONTH'S INSTANT POLL: NEW EXCHANGE FEATURES
The voting has ended in the Exchange & Outlook Administrator Web site's nonscientific Exchange Instant Poll for the question "Which of the following Exchange Server 2003 features interests you most?" Here are the results from the 384 votes:
- 14% Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS)
- 39% New OWA
- 4% Enhanced cluster support
- 33% Anti-spam features
- 11% Nothing in Exchange 2003 interests me
(Deviations from 100 percent are due to rounding.)
* NEW INSTANT POLL: DEALING WITH SPAM
The next Exchange Instant Poll question is "How do you deal with spam?" Go to the Exchange & Outlook Administrator home page and submit your vote for a) We use an appliance- or server-based solution, b) We use a client-side filter, c) We subscribe to a hosted antispam service, d) We rely on Exchange Server plugins, or e) We don't take any specific antispam measures.
(contributed by Carolyn Mader, [email protected])
* BUILD DISTRIBUTION LISTS FROM EXTERNAL DATABASES
Discus Data Solutions released ExMS ActiveDL 5.0, distribution list (DL) management software that lets you query external data sources when you build lists and import membership lists from a text file. The software can also create a family of DLs and security groups for all the values in an Exchange Server or Active Directory (AD) attribute. A scheduler automatically updates DLs and security groups and monitors scheduling status to ensure accuracy. For pricing, contact Discus Data Solutions at 212-279-9090 or 877-434-7287.
* SUBMIT TOP PRODUCT IDEAS
Have you used a product that changed your IT experience by saving you time or easing your daily burden? Do you know of a terrific product that others should know about? Tell us! We want to write about the product in a future Windows & .NET Magazine What's Hot column. Send your product suggestions to [email protected]
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Thank you for reading Exchange and Outlook UPDATE, Exchange Edition. __________________________________________________________ Copyright 2003, Penton Media, Inc.