0.21.0 (March 9, 2004)

 Welcome to POPFile v0.21.0
 This version consists of a major update to v0.20.1 with many improvements
 and bug fixes:
 1. Multi-user phase 1
 POPFile now recognizes two environment variables (POPFILE_ROOT and
 POPFILE_USER) which can be used to customize the location of POPFile
 and the location of its per-user data.  POPFile *no longer* has to be
 run with the current working directory set to where popfile.pl is 
 POPFILE_ROOT: this is the full path to the popfile.pl file.  Once
 set you can run POPFile from any directory and it will find its 
 modules using POPFILE_ROOT
 POPFILE_USER: this is where POPFile will keep its per-user data (i.e.
 the database and history).  This means that a single installation
 of POPFile can be used with multiple users.  Just specify a different
 directory in POPFILE_USER for each user and run POPFile once per user.
 In a future release POPFile will support a single instance of POPFile
 with multiple users sharing the same database (this is known as 
 Multi-user Phase 2 and you can read more in the POPFile Roadmap---see
 below for link)
 2. Switch to SQL database
 In v0.20.0 POPFile switched from storing all its information in flat
 files to using BerkeleyDB.  BerkeleyDB has proved to be not stable 
 enough on Windows 98 in certain cases, for that reason and to
 prepare for Multi-user Phase 2, the underlying data has been moved
 into an SQL database.  POPFile currently by default uses SQLite but
 can be successfully used with other SQL databases like MySQL.
 (SQLite can be found on the web at http://www.sqlite.com/ and is 
  public domain software.)
 The schema for POPFile can be found in Classifier/popfile.sql for
 those that want to load it into their own SQL database.  If you start
 using POPFile with a database we don't currently support please let
 me know (e.g. anyone want to try Oracle?).   POPFile *should* work
 with any SQL database supported by Perl's DBI mechanism.
 3. UI improvements
 The global options for Subject Modification, X-Text-Classification
 insertion and X-POPFile-Link insertion have been removed and replaced
 with individual options on a per bucket basis to give greater choice
 in configuring POPFile.
 IMPORTANT NOTE:  Because of the elimination of the global parameters
 you will need to check and set/unset the individual bucket parameters
 for Subject Modification, X-Text-Classification and X-POPFile-Link.
 Visit the Buckets page to configure each bucket to your liking.
 The 'unclassified' bucket is now visible in the UI so that you can see
 how many messages were unclassified, and configure header modification.
 This also means that unclassified messages are counted in the accuracy
 statistics; previously they were not counted which could have skewed 
 the accuracy statistics if there were unclassified messages.
 The history "page" bar has been simplified so that it uses a fixed 
 amount of screen space, while making navigation easy.   Filters and
 searches on the history are now persistent, for example you can click
 on the Buckets page and return to the History page without losing your 
 filter or search settings.
 The UI password is now stored as a one-way hash and is no longer ever
 displayed or stored in plain text.
 The Buckets page has been modified to only show the 'distinct word'
 count per bucket and to (finally :-) show the total number of distinct
 words in the database.  Previously we showed two counts with confusing
 titles: now we show the true number of words in the database, not the
 "word counts" (which was the number of times each word occurred).
 Another language has been added to the list of interface localizations:
 POPFile is now available in our second right-to-left language, Arabic.
 4. Change to command line
 If you are using the command line to configure POPFile there has been
 a major change in the way it is parsed.  The old style (for example,
 perl popfile.pl -pop3_port 110) has been deprecated and replaced with
 a proper getopt style command line.   We now have a single -- parameter:
 --set which is used to set POPFile configuration options on the command
 line.  For example 'perl popfile.pl -pop3_port 110' would be replaced
 with 'perl popfile.pl --set pop3_port=110'.  Note that existing scripts
 will continue to work since the old style is merely deprecated, but they
 should be upgraded as support for the old style is not guaranteed for 
 all future versions.
 5. Enable/disable modules
 Each POPFile module can now be disabled or enabled with command line 
 options: for example if you don't need the optional XMLRPC module loaded 
 it's possible to specify --set xmlrpc_enabled=0 and it will be unloaded.
 6. Anti-spam improvements
 We've recently seen spam start to use CSS to obscure messages and fool
 filters like POPFile; in response, this version of POPFile does analysis
 of CSS in HTML encoded messages.  POPFile now correctly uses the
 SpamAssassin headers to make POPFile more efficient when used in
 conjunction with SpamAssassin.  We now also look at TLDs (Top Level
 Domains) and store them as pseudowords (most useful for TLDs like .biz).
 It's possible that you might see a drop in accuracy as your corpus gets
 trained up on the new anti-spam features.   This drop in accuracy will
 be corrected once you've retrained POPFile a little.
 7. POPFile Documentation Project
 In addition since v0.20.1 a lot of work has gone into a set of web pages
 called the 'POPFile Documentation Project' that includes FAQs, setup guides,
 etc., please visit:
 1. BACK UP YOUR OLD INSTALLATION: POPFile makes this really easy, just copy
 the entire POPFile directory somewhere. You can then safely install
 POPFile v0.21.0 on top of your current installation.  The installer will
 automatically create a backup of your existing corpus and configuration file;
 I just think a full back up is a sensible precaution.
 2. IF YOU ARE RUNNING WINDOWS: Please read the section below I AM RUNNING
 3. ON WINDOWS POPFILE IS AN EXE. Windows users will now be able to see
 POPFile running in the Task Manager with an executable called popfileXX.exe
 where the XX is one of f, if, b, ib depending on configuration. POPFile
 is started by running runpopfile.exe which chooses the appropriate popfileXX.exe
 This might cause your firewall to ask about giving popfileXX.exe permissions,
 in addition if you had allowed Perl permissions in your firewall they are
 NO LONGER needed.
 Because the time taken to start a new process on Windows is long under Perl
 there is an optimization for Windows that is active by default: when a new
 connection is made between your email program and POPFile, POPFile handles it
 in the 'parent' process. This means that the connect happens fast and mail
 starts downloading very quickly, but is means that you can only downloaded
 messages from one server at a time (up to 6 other connections will be queued
 up and dealt with in the order they arrive) and the UI is unavailable while
 downloading email.
 You can turn this behavior off (and get simultaneous UI/email access and as
 many email connections as you like) by going to the Configuration panel in
 the UI and making sure that "Allow concurrent POP3 connections:" is set to
 Yes, or by specifying --set pop3_force_fork=1 on the command line.
 POPFile works best if the POPFILE_ROOT and POPFILE_USER environment variables 
 use lowercase short file name format. For example, instead of using 
 C:\Program Files\POPFile you should use c:\progra~1\popfile. The use of lower
 case is *very important* if an existing flat file or BerkeleyDB corpus is to 
 be converted.
 The short file name format is not very user friendly, so the Windows installer 
 makes it easy to create suitable environment variables. The Windows installer 
 assumes that each POPFile user will have different POPFILE_USER settings, and 
 provides some simple utilities to make it easy to to create these new 
 environment variables.
 When the installer is run, it automatically creates the necessary lowercase 
 short file name format environment variables for the user running the 
 installer. This data is stored in a user-specific part of the registry.
 The "Run POPFile" shortcuts created by the installer in the Start Menu (and, 
 optionally, in the StartUp folder) start the 'runpopfile.exe' program which 
 is responsible for ensuring that POPFILE_ROOT and POPFILE_USER have the correct 
 values before calling the 'popfile.exe' program which starts POPFile.
 If 'runpopfile.exe' is run by a user who does not yet have any POPFile 
 settings in the registry, the 'Add POPFile User' wizard will be started if it 
 is available. [This wizard is only available if POPFile was installed by a 
 user with 'Admin' rights]
 This wizard lets the user choose a location for their POPFile data and offers 
 to reconfigure any suitable Outlook Express, Outlook or Eudora email accounts 
 for use with POPFile. If any email settings are changed, the wizard will save 
 the data needed to restore the original settings. After this, the wizard will 
 start POPFile by calling 'popfile.exe'.
 Windows 9x supports system-wide environment variables which are defined in 
 AUTOEXEC.BAT. Normally to change the value of these environment variables 
 AUTOEXEC.BAT has to be updated and the computer rebooted. The 
 'runpopfile.exe' program avoids the need to reboot Windows 9x systems in 
 order to switch between different sets of user data (users just need to log 
 on and log off as normal).
 The 'Add POPFile User' wizard only offers some simple features at present, 
 as it is still under development. For example there is very little error 
 checking in the current version.
 POPFile requires a number of Perl modules that are available from CPAN. New
 in v0.21.0 are the need for the following:
 You may also need:
 BerkeleyDB (if you are upgrading from v0.20.x)
 Text::Kakasi (if you want Japanese language support)
 Encode (if you want Japanese language support)
 Notes on installing the cross platform version can be found here:
 In a future version POPFile will add official support for message 
 classification through the SMTP and NNTP (Usenet news) protocols. There are 
 currently proxy modules for these protocols that work with v0.21.0, but 
 they have not been fully tested. If you are interested in getting them get 
 them here:
 and place them in POPFile's Proxy/ directory.
 You can obtain the latest releases of POPFile by visiting
 Just install POPFile on top of the currently installed version. But did you
 read the ESSENTIAL READING above first.
 Thank you to everyone who has clicked the Donate! button and donated their
 hard earned cash to me in support of POPFile. Thank you also to the people
 who have contributed patches, feature requests, bug reports and translations.
 As well as the usual donations we have a specific "BuyJohnAMac" campaign 
 that you can read about here:
 This release sees an enormous improvement in the Windows installer which
 been the exclusive playground of Brian Smith.  Brian has work tirelessly to
 make the Windows installer robust, clear and easy.   Nice work, Brian!
 Sam continues to make contributions to POPFile's core, with the latest being
 his addition of the CSS parser.
 Naoki Iimura has done a huge amount of work converting the FAQ from English 
 to Japanese for the benefit of the many users of POPFile in Japan.
 The rough plan for the future of POPFile is the as follows:
 v0.22.0 Theme: Protocols/UI
         Add support for SMTP, NNTP, IMAP(?)
         New skinning system
         Support SSL and SOCKS for all proxies
         Move history into database
 v0.23.0 Theme: Multi-user Phase 2
         Support for multiple users with logins
         Scalable to large organizations/ISPs
         History encryption
 v1.00.0 Theme: Stable Release
         First non v0.X release of POPFile
 The full roadmap can be found here:
 Keep the ideas and bug reports coming. If you are interested in knowing
 more about what's planned for future POPFile versions (or just learning
 about POPFile's history) visit the POPFile Roadmap:
releasenotes/0.21.0.txt · Last modified: 2008/02/08 19:49 (external edit)

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