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Create an Email Whitelist

Wednesday, November 17th, 2004 by | Filed Under: E-Mail Help
 
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Creating an Outlook Express Whitelist

Some of you only use your email to keep in touch with friends and family. If you don’t want to get email from anyone except those in your address book, you can create a “whitelist” that only allows the people on the list to get email to you. We talked about “whitelisting” last Thursday and I didn’t think there was a way to do it with Outlook Express . Turns out that there is (see below if you use Netscape Mail). HOW to do it is easy, but the process of putting your list together can take some time. ~David

Want a way to only allow emails from people on a list to get through to your inbox and send the others somewhere to be sorted out? From there you can have them deleted, moved to a different folder, or even, not receive them at all. This can be done with an often overlooked button in Outlook Express Message Rules. Even David the esteemed tip writer missed this one!

Here’s what you do:

Simply choose the Message Rules option from the Tools Menu. Then select “Mail”.

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Next, click the “New” button.

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In the list of Conditions (#1), check the box next to “Where the From line contains people.”

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I would suggest specifying the values in the Rule Description (#3) next.  Click on “contains people” and on the following menu, press the Address Book button.

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After you have added all the people you wish to allow email from on this account, press OK to close the address book.  Don’t forget to add worldstart.com on the Select People dialog box so you can still get your Computer Tips Newsletter . Also, if you do any shopping online, you might miss out on email from customer service. The address you send to is not always the address that responds. You could just add the domain, if it is a dedicated domain (like amazon.com), then if you get any emails from them regarding an order, they will not be filtered.

Then, press the “Options” button.

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Select the radio button next to “Message does not contain the people below.”

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Close this dialog box by pressing OK and do the same with the “Select People” dialog box. 

Finally, you need to decide what Actions (#2) you want to take with the unwanted email.  Scroll through the Actions and check the box next to those that suit your needs.

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Most users will check the box next to “Delete” it.  This places the unwanted mail into your Deleted Folder.  But it would be wiser to create a special folder called “Quarantine” and send filtered mail there so you can check to see if anyone you know that you forgot to put on your list tried to send you an email.

Press OK to close the dialog boxes and have your new message rule work for you. You can click on the “Message Rule #” and rename it something like “whitelist” so you know what it is.

This is a free way to eliminate the unwanted email that ends up in your Inbox every day!

~ Dale Berglund of Milwaukee, WI

Creating a Netscape Whitelist

Now, for you Netscape users, here is a way to do this. Remmeber, this is for you if email is strictly your way to keep in touch with friends and family and anyone in your address book. Mail from anyone else will go to the file you specify, bypassing your inbox.

Here’s what you do:

Follow the standard procedure for creating Message Filters: Tools / Message Filter then select the user you want the rule for and click the “New” button.

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Give the filter a name like “Whitelist”. Configure it to “Match any of the following” then choose “Sender” and “Doesn’t contain”.

Here comes the time consuming part. I didn’t find a way to add names directly from thge address book, so you will need to open it, then manually type in the address. You could also add entire domains if you want email from anyone at that domain. Be sure to add worldstart.com so you keep getting our newsletters. Also, if you do any shopping online, you might miss out on email from customer service. The address you send to is not always the address that responds. You could just add the domain, if it is a dedicated domain (like amazon.com), then if you get any emails from them regarding an order, they will not be filtered.

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Now, at first glance you might be saying, “Hey David, you can only put one name there.” But look closely, and you will see a button marked “More”. One little click and you can add as many names as you need.

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Now you want to tell Netscape where to put the email that is filtered out. One option is to choose “Delete it”, which sends it directly to the trash. But what if your friend changes their address? You will lose any email from the new one. I suggest choosing “Move to folder”, then creating a quarantine.

To do this, select “Move to folder”, go over to the third tab marked “New folder”. This will bring up a window a window to name the folder, then choose it as a subfolder. The Inbox would be the best place for it. Click OK.

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Back at the main Filter Rule page, after you put in all your addresses and are ready to start filtering, click OK. You should now see “Whitelist” in your Message Filters with a check mark under “Enabled” (If you ever decide to disable the filter, just uncheck it).

So now, every time you check your mail, only the mail from your friends will get through, and the rest will end up in that quarantined folder. From there you can check that folder to check for false positives . If you decide to add names to the filter, you can easily do this by double clicking the filter and adding them.

There you have it—a way to control unwanted email. It was sitting there all along, just waiting for you to find it.

~ David

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