Miscellaneous Ramblings

Anti-spam Measures Marginalize Low-End Macs

Charles Moore - 2001.07.09 - Tip Jar

Last week, my Canadian ISP, Auracom/Interhop, announced that theywere adopting a new SMTP authentication protocol for outgoing emailmessages as an anti-spam measure.

I appreciate why they are doing this, and I support anti-spammeasures in principle, but in this case a side effect appears to bethat 68K Macs are no longer supported on their network for sending POP3 email.

On Saturday evening, a friend of mine who uses a Performa 630 phoned to say that she could nolonger send email with Netscape 4.0.5. The notification email sent outby Auracom indicated that Netscape Messenger could be configured toallow SMTP authorization, but she had followed their setup instructionsand had no luck. I am provisionally assuming that only Netscape 4.5 andlater will support such authorization, and these versions will notsupport 68K Macs.

Eudora Light 3.1.3, the 68K Mac user's standard POP3 client foryears, doesn't support SMTP authorization, either. Eudora 4.3, 5.0, and5.1 do, but they don't support 68K Macs.

My wife uses a 68K Mac LC 520 andEudora Light for email, so she appears to be shut out as well.

I phoned Auracom's tech support line to ask if they knew of any 68Ksavvy Mac email clients that authorization, and they were not evenaware that this was an issue. As usual, I knew more about the Mac endof things already than they did.

To the best of their knowledge, the only Mac email clientsthat are compatible with their new protocol are Netscape Messenger (4.5and later, apparently), Eudora 4.3 and later, and Outlook Express (4.5and later?), which means that I will no longer be able to use NisusEmail or SweetMail to send messages through their POP3 server, atleast as far as I am aware at this point.

I have discovered that information on this issue is mighty thin, sothis article is as much a query as it is elucidation

I know that the authentication is necessary in order to use theApple mac.com SMTP server for outgoingmessages, and as well as the SMTP server at Applelinks. Up to now, Ihave never bothered and just use the Auracom server for outgoingmessages.

I can, of course, switch to Eudora 5.1, which I already use for someof my accountsr, but I am truly smitten with Nisus Email's quick sendfeature; I will miss it. Another alternative is to switch ISPs, ofwhich there is just one other choice in this area, but I'm wondering ifthis SMTP authorization thing is likely to be adopted by otherproviders as well.

At least I have several options. It appears that 68K Mac users areessentially locked out by Auracom/Interhop. The tech support guysuggested that they should use the service's Web-based email, but IMHOWeb-based email is not a practical option for anyone who deals withmore than a handful of messages a day on a dialup connection.

Perhaps there is a solution to this problem that I'm not aware of,and, if so, I'm eager to hear about it, but if my provisional surmiseis correct, this sucks. Another way that the scum-sucking,bottom-feeding spammers are ruining the Internet for the rest ofus.

My list of currently available full-featured POP3 email clientsthat support 68K Macs includes:

Of these, the only ray of hope is Bare Bones Software's MailSmith,whose Web page describes what appears to possibly be a workaroundfor this issue, although I have not tried it. The downside of Mailsmithis that it is extremely expensive for an email client at $79(cross-upgrade $59).

If there are others, especially ones that support SMTPauthorization/authentication, please let me know.

Authentication configuration with PowerPC Macs:

To enable authorization in Outlook Express entersmtp.yourserver.com or whatever as the SMTP address in the Accountwindow. Then go to "advanced sending options" and enable the optionthat says "SMTP server requires authentication." If you are using theISP's server as your incoming email POP server, leave the defaultsub-option as "Use same settings as incoming mail server."

To configure Eudora 4.3 & 5.1 For Mac:

Open Eudora -> Special Menu at top -> Settings option ->scroll down box on left side of window and select "Sending Mail" option-> make sure that "Allow Authorization" is selected with a checkmark.

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Charles Moore has been a freelance journalist since 1987 and began writing for Mac websites in May 1998. His The Road Warrior column was a regular feature on MacOpinion, he is news editor at Applelinks.com and a columnist at MacPrices.net. If you find his articles helpful, please consider making a donation to his tip jar.

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