spamc [options] < message
Spamc is the client half of the spamc/spamd pair. It should be used in
place of "spamassassin" in scripts to process mail. It will read the
mail from STDIN, and spool it to its connection to spamd, then read the
result back and print it to STDOUT. Spamc has extremely low overhead
in loading, so it should be much faster to load than the whole
See the README file in the spamd directory of the SpamAssassin
distribution for more details.
All options detailed below can be passed as command line arguments, or
be contained in a configuration file, as described in the CONFIGURATION
FILE section below.
Note that the long options, a la "--long-options", are new as of
SpamAssassin 3.2.0, and were not available in earlier versions.
Assume input is a single BSMTP-formatted message. In other words,
spamc will pull out everything between the DATA line and the lone-
dot line to feed to spamd, and will place the spamd output back in
the same envelope (thus, any SIZE extension in your BSMTP file will
cause many problems).
Just check if the message is spam or not. Set process exitcode to
1 if message is spam, 0 if not spam or processing failure occurs.
Will print score/threshold to stdout (as ints) or 0/0 if there was
an error. Combining -c and -E is a no-op, since -c implies the
behaviour of -E.
-d host[,host2], --dest=host[,host2]
In TCP/IP mode, connect to spamd server on given host (default:
localhost). Several hosts can be specified if separated by commas.
If host resolves to multiple addresses, then spamc will fail-over
to the other addresses, if the first one cannot be connected to.
It will first try all addresses of one host before it tries the
next one in the list. Note that this fail-over behaviour is
incompatible with -x; if that switch is used, fail-over will not
-e command [args], --pipe-to command [args]
Instead of writing to stdout, pipe the output to command's standard
input. Note that there is a very slight chance mail will be lost
here, because if the fork-and-exec fails there's no place to put
the mail message.
Specify a configuration file to read additional command-line flags
from. See CONFIGURATION FILE below.
Print this help message and terminate without action.
For TCP/IP sockets, randomize the IP addresses returned for the
hosts given by the -d switch. This provides for a simple kind of
load balancing. It will try only three times though.
Send log messages to stderr, instead of to the syslog.
-L learn type, --learntype=type
Send message to spamd for learning. The "learn type" can be either
spam, ham or forget. The exitcode for spamc will be set to 5 if
the message was learned, or 6 if it was already learned, under a
condition that a --no-safe-fallback option is selected too.
Note that the "spamd" must run with the "--allow-tell" option for
this to work.
-C report type, --reporttype=type
Report or revoke a message to one of the configured collaborative
filtering databases. The "report type" can be either report or
Note that the "spamd" must run with the "--allow-tell" option for
this to work.
-p port, --port=port
In TCP/IP mode, connect to spamd server listening on given port
Just output the SpamAssassin report text to stdout, if the message
is spam. If the message is ham (non-spam), nothing will be
printed. The first line of the output is the message score and the
threshold, in this format:
Just output the SpamAssassin report text to stdout, for all
messages. See -r for details of the output format used.
-s max_size, --max-size=max_size
Set the maximum message size which will be sent to spamd -- any
bigger than this threshold and the message will be returned
unprocessed (default: 500 KB). If spamc gets handed a message
bigger than this, it won't be passed to spamd. The maximum message
size is 256 MB.
times out). This differs from --connect-retries in that it times
out the transaction after the TCP connection has been established
successfully. The default is 1 time (ie. one attempt and no
Sleep for sleep seconds between failed spamd filtering attempts.
The default is 1 second.
-S, --ssl, --ssl=sslversion
If spamc was built with support for SSL, encrypt data to and from
the spamd process with SSL; spamd must support SSL as well.
sslversion specifies the SSL protocol version to use, either
"sslv3", or "tlsv1". The default, is "sslv3".
-t timeout, --timeout=timeout
Set the timeout for spamc-to-spamd communications (default: 600, 0
disables). If spamd takes longer than this many seconds to reply
to a message, spamc will abort the connection and treat this as a
failure to connect; in other words the message will be returned
-n timeout, --connect-timeout=timeout
Set the timeout for spamc-to-spamd connection establishment
(default: 600, 0 disables). If spamc takes longer than this many
seconds to establish a connection to spamd, spamc will abort the
connection and treat this as a failure to connect; in other words
the message will be returned unprocessed.
-u username, --username=username
To have spamd use per-user-config files, run spamc as the user
whose config files spamd should load; by default the effective
user-ID is sent to spamd. If you're running spamc as some other
user, though, (eg. root, mail, nobody, cyrus, etc.) then you may
use this flag to override the default.
-U socketpath, --socket=path
Connect to "spamd" via UNIX domain socket socketpath instead of a
This option is not supported on Win32 platforms.
Report the version of this "spamc" client. If built with SSL
support, an additional line will be included noting this, like so:
SpamAssassin Client version 3.0.0-rc4
compiled with SSL support (OpenSSL 0.9.7d 17 Mar 2004)
Disables the 'safe fallback' error-recovery method, which passes
through the unaltered message if an error occurs. Instead, exit
with an error code, and let the MTA queue up the mails for a retry
later. See also "EXIT CODES".
Note that this relies on "zlib" being installed on the "spamc"
client side, and the "Compress::Zlib" perl module on the server
side; an error will be returned otherwise.
Perform a scan, but instead of allowing any part of the message
(header and body) to be rewritten, limit rewriting to only the
message headers. This is much more efficient in bandwidth usage,
since the response message transmitted back from the spamd server
will not include the body.
Note that this only makes sense if you are using "report_safe 0" in
the scanning configuration on the remote end; with "report_safe 1",
it is likely to result in corrupt messages.
The above command-line switches can also be loaded from a configuration
The format of the file is similar to the SpamAssassin rules files;
blank lines and lines beginning with "#" are ignored. Any space-
separated words are considered additions to the command line, and are
prepended. Newlines are treated as equivalent to spaces. Existing
command line switches will override any settings in the configuration
If the -F switch is specified, that file will be used. Otherwise,
"spamc" will attempt to load spamc.conf in "SYSCONFDIR" (default:
/etc/spamassassin). If that file doesn't exist, and the -F switch is
not specified, no configuration file will be read.
# spamc global configuration file
# connect to "server.example.com", port 783
# max message size for scanning = 350k
By default, spamc will use the 'safe fallback' error recovery method.
That means, it will always exit with an exit code if 0, even if an
error was encountered. If any error occurrs, it will simply pass
through the unaltered message.
The -c and -E options modify this; instead, spamc will use an exit code
of 1 if the message is determined to be spam.
If one of the "-x", "-L" or "-C" options are specified, 'safe fallback'
will be disabled, and certain error conditions related to communication
between spamc and spamd will result in an error code. The exit codes
EX_IOERR 74 input/output error
EX_TEMPFAIL 75 temp failure; user is invited to retry
EX_PROTOCOL 76 remote error in protocol
EX_NOPERM 77 permission denied
EX_CONFIG 78 configuration error
EX_TOOBIG 98 message was too big to process (see --max-size)
spamd(8) spamassassin(1) Mail::SpamAssassin(3)
The SpamAssassin(tm) Project <http://spamassassin.apache.org/>
SpamAssassin is distributed under the Apache License, Version 2.0, as
described in the file "LICENSE" included with the distribution.
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