I installed a fully functional trial version of SpamSieve on the recommendation of my friend Leisureguy a couple of weeks ago. I’ve been suffering a literal spam invasion, getting somewhere around 2000 a day from my four email accounts. The resident filter in Apple Mail is completely incompetent (as was the one in Outlook previously); it learns very poorly and continues to deliver the same crap from the same addresses into my Inbox. With both Apple Mail and Outlook, the number of false positives, i.e., good emails that go to the JunkMail folder, is very high, requiring constant monitoring of the JunkMail box; a somewhat self-defeating exercise time-wise.

SpamSieve is easy to install if you are a reasonably competent computer user. I would rate it a 5 on the 10-point difficulty scale compared to most Apple software, which usually installs almost seamlessly around 2-3 on the scale. SpamSieve actually requires you to READ instructions, follow them, and set a few parameters. The problem is that there are so many email programs out there, that the instructions appear vast and intimidating until you realize that you must first pick which email “client” you are using (Apple Mail, Outlook, etc.). The first time I looked at SpamSieve a few months ago, I gave up just reading the initial setup directions. That was a mistake: It’s much easier than they make it sound.

Once installed, SpamSieve is very easy to train and it REMEMBERS. If you have some spam emails in your Inbox or JunkMail, you point SpamSieve to it and it uses them to train itself. It is uncannily good at catching crap, and once you train it on the ones that manage to sneak by, it catches them faultlessly in the future. It also seems to have some form of blocker, because my spam has “dwindled” to about 300 a day.

Overall, I like SpamSieve and will buy it when the trial expires. For $30 it’s a bargain.