On Mon, 23 Aug 1999, Nick Simicich wrote:
> I did someting else. I hacked on bulk-mailer until it can do what
> I've heard referred to as VERP, which I learned about here.
I agree that we should all be implementing VERP schemes. It is certainly
on my ever growing "to-do" list here. But while VERP solve the
headache of useless NDRs and of tracing out forwardings, etc, it does not
absolve mail managers from having systems with useful NDRs. VERP-ing
itself is not costless in terms of server resources, and it is a pitty
that it is needed.
> Pretty much every bounce will bounce to the MAIL FROM address, so I
> then can sort them out automatically. I think sites are getting
> better about at least sending bounces back to RFC821 MAIL FROM.
> Since I have done this, I've only encountered one site that is trying
> to send bounces to my mailing list to reply-to and will not fix their
Take a look at
for a document to refer the people at that site to. It used to be a more
common problem, but is thankfully becoming rarer.
> I also find that there are three or four autoresponder patterns that I
> grep context for and bounce for manual review that get 95% of the bad
> autoresponders that reply to lists. Probably simply checking for "out
> of the office" gets 90% of them. Very few false positives (but this
> is likely to be one) :-).
Yes. We can try to play catch up and keep our filters up-to-date, but
still we should apply pressure to those sites which host bad
autoresponders. So, I hope that you at least complain to the site manager
when you do catch one of those.
Jeffrey Goldberg +44 (0)1234 750 111 x 2826
Cranfield Computer Centre FAX 751 814
Relativism is the triumph of authority over truth, convention over justice.