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20 June, 2004

Use MT-Blacklist

I waited for my web host to sort itself out and restore the Storable perl module after the server 'upgrade' on 5-6 June.  And waited.  With no protection against comments spam other than vigilance and manual deletion.  No Storable module, no MT-Blacklist.  There was an alternative technique for MT-Blacklist installation, but how long does it take to reinstall a perl module, thereby reactivation my existing blacklisting facility?  Two minutes?  Three?  I thought I might as well wait.  And wait.

A full fortnight later, still with no Storable, I received 22 instances of comments spam overnight. I couldn't be bothered deleting them one by one and rebuilding the archive just to do it all again when the spammers returned - and they will, now they've found an unprotected installation of MT.
I've just gone down 'The Less Easy Path' documented by Jay Allen, using the YAML approach. It wasn't too bad, and I only had one problem configuring file paths to the vagaries of my server space, so protection is now fully back in place, no thanks to my web host, which I'm not going to promote by naming.

The 22 spam comments were removed within a minute, and the spammer's clients (i.e. the websites being promoted) added to a permanent blacklist which is shared amongst all other MT users, so not only am I (virtually) immune to further instances from the same sources, so are other users.

If you publish a blog using Movable Type v.2.661 or earlier (i.e. not MT3), I can't recommend Jay's MT-Blacklist highly enough. Install it TODAY. Unless you have a substandard web host like mine, installation couldn't be easier, and the 'Less Easy' approach is still much easier than installing MT 2.661 itself.


I just looked at my activity log, and it's amazing how much comment spam it's fielding (and MT-Blacklist makes it easy to clean up after the few that did get through).

BTW, did you go to Yes in Manchester last night?

Posted by Tim Hall at June 20, 2004 02:14 PM

I do think that MT-Blacklist is an integral part of Movable Type. I understand Jay and Six Apart are discussing the possibility of it becoming part of the official package for the general release of MT3.

It would be no exaggeration to say Yes is my all-time least favourite band. I'll certainly be at Marillion's Manchester concert next week, though.

Posted by NRT at June 20, 2004 07:58 PM

I was chatting earlier on to someone that loves Yes but cannot stand Marillion :)

I like both bands, and will certainly be at the Academy show on the 1st July.

Posted by Tim Hall at June 20, 2004 11:53 PM
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