On our server we've got a problem with spamassassin/exim4 blocking email from our mailing list software as spam. This because (usually) the headers the software (ecartis) adds add points to make it go over the boundary.

Mail from a@.com -> server. 4.0 spam points
Mailing list software -> Exim 4, +2.5 spam point
Exim blocks email as having a score of 6.5

We've disabled the rules that usually trigger, but would like to whitelist all incoming mails. We've already tried a few things but it doesn't work. We do not want to raise the spam score limit because that lets real spam through. Is this possible and if yes, how?

Added to spamassassin local.cf:
trusted_networks 127/8

Exim rule that fires:

  spam = Debian-exim:true
  message = This message scored $spam_score spam points.
  condition = ${if >{$spam_score_int}{59}{1}{0}}

Example of a rejected mail:

2011-12-20 12:04:21 1RcxUb-0002GM-EP H=localhost (xxx.xxx.xx) [] U=ecartis F= rejected after DATA: This message scored 6.6 spam points.
P Received: from localhost
        ([] helo=xxx.xxx.xx ident=ecartis)
        by xxx.xxx.xx with esmtp (Exim 4.72)
        (envelope-from )
        id 1RcxUb-0002GM-EP; Tue, 20 Dec 2011 12:04:21 +0100
  • Can you past full headers including spam-assassin hits, or logs from spam-assassin log file? – User4283 Dec 22 '11 at 15:37

The solution isn't to make spamassassin score these mails correctly, the solution is to not send them to spamassassin in the first place.

You need to add a rule beforehand to explicitly accept mails from your bulkmail host.

accept  hosts =

Change to be server / network where you want to allow mails to come in from.

  • Thanks, I'll try that. In my case it would 192.168.250/24 and 127/8 – dtech Jan 2 '12 at 12:22

Save your mail on the SpamAssassin host. There run spamassassin -D < themail.eml and see why it gets such a high score.

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