The following is the text of INSTALL, based off of revision 233398.

Please feel free to edit it as much as you like to make it more useful. Periodically the version in Subversion will be updated to incorporate some of the changes.

To see the latest version in Subversion, click here

Feel free to write comments about your changes in the Comments section (at the bottom).

Upgrading SpamAssassin?

Please be sure to read the UPGRADE file for important changes that
have been made since previous versions.

Installing or Upgrading SpamAssassin

Using CPAN via

	perl -MCPAN -e shell                    [as root]
	o conf prerequisites_policy ask
	install Mail::SpamAssassin

Using Linux:

	Debian unstable: apt-get install spamassassin
	Gentoo: emerge mail-filter/spamassassin
	Fedora: yum install spamassassin

Alternatively download the tarfile, zipfile, and/or build your own RPM
from  Building from tar/zip file is
usually as simple as:

	[unzip/untar the archive]
	cd Mail-SpamAssassin-*
	perl Makefile.PL
	[option: add -DSPAMC_SSL to $CFLAGS to build an SSL-enabled spamc]
	make install                            [as root]

Please make sure to read this whole document before installing, especially
the prerequisite information further down.

To install as non-root, see the directions below.

If you are running AFS, you may also need to specify INSTALLSITELIB and

Note that you can upgrade SpamAssassin using these instructions, as long
as you take care to read the caveats in the file UPGRADES.   Upgrading
will not delete your learnt Bayes data or local rule modifications.

If you're using SunOS 4.1.x, see for build tips.

Note for Perl 5.8 Users (incl Red Hat 8)

Perl 5.8 now uses Unicode internally by default, which causes trouble for
SpamAssassin (and almost all other reasonably complex pieces of perl

We've worked around this in most places, as far as we know, but there may
still be some issues.  In addition, there is a speed hit, which it would
be nice to avoid.

Setting the LANG environment variable before any invocation of
SpamAssassin sometimes seems to help fix it, like so:

  export LANG=en_US

Notably, the LANG setting must not include "utf8".   However, some folks
have reported that this makes no difference. ;)

Installing SpamAssassin for Personal Use (Not System-Wide)

These steps assume the following, so substitute as necessary:
  - Your UNIX login is "user"
  - Your home directory is /home/user
  - The location of the procmail executable is /usr/bin/procmail

Many more details of this process are at

1. Uncompress and extract the SpamAssassin archive, using "unzip" or
   "tar xvfz", in a temporary directory.

2. change directory into it:

	cd Mail-SpamAssassin-*

3. Make SpamAssassin as normal, but using your home directory as the

	perl Makefile.PL PREFIX=$HOME
	make install

Please see the file PACKAGING, sections "Changing paths in the Makefile"
and "Setting further options on the command line" for more informations
on available command line variables.

4. If you already use procmail, skip to step 6.  If not, ensure procmail
   is installed using "which procmail" or install it from

5. Create a .forward file in your home directory containing the below

"|IFS=' ' && exec /usr/bin/procmail -f- || exit 75 #user"

6. Edit or create a .procmailrc file in your home directory containing the
   below lines.  If you already have a .procmailrc file, add the lines to
   the top of your .procmailrc file:

:0fw: spamassassin.lock
| /home/user/bin/spamassassin

The above line filters all incoming mail through SpamAssassin and tags
probable spam with a unique header.  If you would prefer to have spam
blocked and saved to a file called "caughtspam" in your home directory,
instead of passed through and tagged, append this directly below the above

* ^X-Spam-Status: Yes

Also, see the file procmailrc.example and

7. Now, you should be ready to send some test emails and ensure everything
   works as expected.  First, send yourself a test email that doesn't
   contain anything suspicious.  You should receive it normally, but there
   will be a header containing "X-Spam-Status: No".  If you are only
   tagging your spam, send yourself a copy of the GTUBE test string to
   check to be sure it is marked as spam.  GTUBE is located in the
   sample-spam.txt message distributed with SpamAssassin and also at:

   If your test emails don't get through to you, immediately rename your
   .forward file until you figure out cause of the the problem, so you
   don't lose incoming email.

   Note: one possible cause for this is the use of smrsh on the MTA system;
   see for details.

8. You can now customize SpamAssassin.  See README for more information.


Most of the modules listed below are available via the Comprehensive Perl
Archive Network (CPAN, see for more information).
While each module is different, most can be installed via a few simple
commands such as:

	$ perl -MCPAN -e shell
	cpan> o conf prerequisites_policy ask
	cpan> install Module::Name
	cpan> quit

If there are problems or questions regarding the installation any of the
modules, please see the CPAN and relevant module's documentation for more
information.  We can't provide documentation or installation support for
third party modules.

Additional information about the CPAN module is also available via
"perldoc CPAN".

Most Linux distributions also offer the CPAN modules in their own native
formats (RPMs, Debian packages, etc.), so you should be able to find these
through those mechanisms, too, if you prefer.

Required Perl Interpreter

Perl 5.6.1 or a later version is required.

Required Perl Modules

In addition to the modules associated with Perl, some additional modules
need to be installed or upgraded depending on the version of Perl that you
are running.

You can get an immediate report on which of these modules you may need (or
want) to upgrade, by running "perl build/check_dependencies" from the
SpamAssassin build directory.

The list of required modules that do not ship with Perl and must be

  - Digest::SHA1 (from CPAN)

    The Digest::SHA1 module is used as a cryptographic hash for some
    tests and the Bayes subsystem.

    Debian: apt-get install libdigest-sha1-perl
    Gentoo: emerge dev-perl/Digest-SHA1

  - HTML::Parser >= 3.24 (from CPAN)

    Version 3.31 or later is recommended.

    HTML is used for an ever-increasing amount of email so this dependency
    is unavoidable.  Run "perldoc -q html" for additional information.

    Debian: apt-get install libhtml-parser-perl
    Gentoo: emerge dev-perl/HTML-Parser

Optional Modules

In addition, the following modules will be used for some checks, if
available and the version is high enough.  If they are not available or if
their version is too low, SpamAssassin will still work, just not as
effectively because some of the spam-detection tests will have to be

Note: SpamAssassin will not warn you if these are installed, but the
version is too low for them to be used.

  - MIME::Base64

    This module is highly recommended to increase the speed with which
    Base64 encoded messages/mail parts are decoded.

  - DB_File (from CPAN, included in many distributions)

    Used to store data on-disk, for the Bayes-style logic and
    auto-whitelist.  As of SpamAssassin 3.1.0, SQL storage (see
    the DBI/DBD modules below) is recommended instead for this.

    There seems to be a bug in libdb 4.1.25, which is
    distributed by default on some versions of Linux.  See for details.

  - Net::DNS (from CPAN)

    Used for all DNS-based tests (SBL, XBL, SpamCop, DSBL, etc.),
    perform MX checks, used when manually reporting spam to SpamCop,
    and used by sa-update to gather version information.  Recommended.

    If this is installed and you are using network tests of any variety
    (which is the default), then you need to make sure the Net::DNS
    version is sufficiently up-to-date:

      - version 0.34 or higher on Unix systems
      - version 0.46 or higher on Windows systems

  - Net::SMTP (from CPAN)

    Used when manually reporting spam to SpamCop.

  - Mail::SPF::Query (from CPAN)

    Used to check DNS Sender Policy Framework (SPF) records to fight email
    address forgery and make it easier to identify spams.

    Net::DNS version 0.34 or higher is required to use Mail::SPF::Query.

  - IP::Country (from CPAN)

    Used by the RelayCountry plugin (not enabled by default) to determine
    the domain country codes of each relay in the path of an email.

  - Net::Ident (from CPAN)

    If you plan to use the --auth-ident option to spamd, you will need
    to install this module.

  - IO::Socket::INET6 (from CPAN)

    This is required if the first nameserver listed in your IP
    configuration or /etc/resolv.conf file is available only via an IPv6

  - IO::Socket::SSL (from CPAN)

    If you wish to use SSL encryption to communicate between spamc and
    spamd (the --ssl option to spamd), you need to install this
    module. (You will need the OpenSSL libraries and use the
    ENABLE_SSL="yes" argument to Makefile.PL to build and run an SSL
    compatibile spamc.)

  - Time::HiRes (from CPAN)

    If this module is installed, the processing times are logged/reported
    more precisely.

  - Mail::DomainKeys (from CPAN)

    If this module is installed, and you enable the DomainKeys plugin,
    SpamAssassin will perform domain key lookups when domain key information
    is present in the message headers.

  - DBI *and* DBD driver/modules for your database (from CPAN)

    If you intend to use SpamAssassin with an SQL database backend for
    user configuration data, Bayes storage, or other storage, you will need
    to have these installed; both the basic DBI module and the driver for
    your database.

  - LWP (from CPAN)

    Used by sa-update to retrieve update archives.

  - IO::Zlib (from CPAN)

    Used by sa-update to uncompress update archives.

  - Archive::Tar (from CPAN)

    Used by sa-update to expand update archives.

What Next?

Take a look at the USAGE document for more information on how to use

The SpamAssassin Wiki <> contains
information on custom plugins, extensions, and other optional modules
included with SpamAssassin.

(end of INSTALL)

// vim:tw=74:


Please enter comments here. You can type @''SIG@ to insert your signature. – DuncanFindlay <<DateTime(2005-08-22T02:43:20Z)>>

Updated DB_File (which was listed as "strongly recommended") to be in line with the 3.1.0 release notes. I'm not sure how exactly it should read; assuming the wording is okay, it should also be moved further down the list. IP::Country::Fast is found in CPAN under IP::Country, so I updated its reference accordingly. – JoshKelley <<DateTime(2005-11-17T20:04:54Z)>>

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