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Using mass-check To Test Rules

"mass-check" is a tool included in the 'masses' directory, which can be found in the SVN repository, to test rules for accuracy and hit-rate. If you're writing custom rules, you really should use this to test them.

First, you need HandClassifiedCorpora. Let's say that's made up of two mbox folders, "/path/to/ham" and "/path/to/spam".

Next, cd into the "masses" directory of the source distribution:

    cd masses
    ./mass-check --progress \
              ham:mbox:/path/to/ham \
              spam:mbox:/path/to/spam

This will create two files, "ham.log" and "spam.log" containing the hitting rules, read from the rules dir "../rules" as they are applied to that corpus. Each line of the two log files represents details about one email message, and there's a line for every message.

mass-check also takes other options to control whether network tests are run, whether multiple processes are run in parallel, how the output is presented, etc.; read the comments at the top of the file for details. Here's some key bits:

Configuration File

Mass-check reads a "user_prefs" file in "spamassassin/user_prefs". You need to create this yourself, it will not be created for you.

To test your own rules, you'll need to put them in this file, and include a line containing "allow_user_rules 1"

Using network tests

For mass-checks for scoresets 1 or 3, using network tests, you need to provide the --net switch. Ensure Net::DNS, Mail::SPF, Mail::DKIM (at least 0.31, preferrably 0.36_5 or later), Razor (InstallingRazor), Pyzor (InstallingPyzor) and DCC (InstallingDCC) are installed.

Network tests are slow unless you use the -j switch to allow mass-check to start multiple parallel scanning processes.

Using Bayes

This is controlled using the mass-check configuration file. Do this:

    cd masses
    mkdir spamassassin
    rm spamassassin/bayes*
    echo "use_bayes 1" >> spamassassin/user_prefs

or to turn it off:

    cd masses
    mkdir spamassassin
    echo "use_bayes 0" >> spamassassin/user_prefs

Once mass-check completes


If you're using mass-check to test your own rules, the next step is to run hit-frequencies: see HitFrequencies for details. Alternatively, if you're submitting data for a new scoreset, see [RescoreMassCheck], or [NightlyMassCheck] for the nightly QA test.


Usage


mass-check [options] target ...


-c=file

set configuration/rules directory

-p=dir

set user-prefs directory

-f=file

read list of targets from <file>

-j=jobs

specify the number of processes to run simultaneously

--net

turn on network checks!

--mid

report Message-ID from each message

--debug

report debugging information

--progress

show progress updates during check

--rewrite=OUT

save rewritten message to OUT (default is /tmp/out)

--showdots

print a dot for each scanned message

--rules=RE

Only test rules matching the given regexp RE

--restart=N

restart all of the children after processing N messages

--deencap=RE

Extract SpamAssassin-encapsulated spam mails only if they were encapsulated by servers matching the regexp RE (default = extract all SpamAssassin-encapsulated mails)

log options

-o

write all logs to stdout

--loghits

log the text hit for patterns (useful for debugging)

--loguris

log the URIs found

--hamlog=log

use <log> as ham log ('ham.log' is default)

--spamlog=log

use <log> as spam log ('spam.log' is default)

message selection options

-n

no date sorting or spam/ham interleaving

--after=N

only test mails received after time_t N (negative values are an offset from current time, e.g. -86400 = last day) or after date as parsed by Time::ParseDate (e.g. '-6 months')

--before=N

same as --after, except received times are before time_t N

--cache

Use cached information about atime (generates files in corpus area)

--all

don't skip big messages

--head=N

only check first N ham and N spam (N messages if -n used)

--tail=N

only check last N ham and N spam (N messages if -n used)

simple target options (implies -o and no ham/spam classification)

--dir

subsequent targets are directories

--file

subsequent targets are files in RFC 822 format

--mbox

subsequent targets are mbox files

--mbx

subsequent targets are mbx files

Just left over functions we should remove at some point:

--bayes

report score from Bayesian classifier

Usage: Targets

non-option arguments are used as target names (mail files and folders), the target format is: <class>:<format>:<location>

class

is "spam" or "ham"

format

is "detect", "dir", "file", "mbx", or "mbox"

location

is a file or directory name. Globbing of ~ and * is supported.

"detect" is the easiest format to use. This assumes "mbox" for any file whose path contains the pattern "/\.mbox/i", "directory" for anything that is a directory, or "file" otherwise.