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[GlowHost] Spam-O-Matic - Spam Firewall stops forum spam Details »»
[GlowHost] Spam-O-Matic - Spam Firewall stops forum spam
Mod Version: 2.1.2, by GlowHost.com (Coder) GlowHost.com is offline
Developer Last Online: Jun 2014 I like it Show Printable Version Email this Page

vB Version: 4.x.x Rating: (512 votes - 4.79 average) Installs: 4401
Released: 05 Aug 2010 Last Update: 28 May 2013 Downloads: 20506
Supported DB Changes Uses Plugins Auto-Template Additional Files Translations External Content  

If you install this mod, please mark this as "Installed."

VERSION 2.1.2 RELEASED 5/28/2013!


About Spam-O-Matic 2.x:
Spam-O-Matic 2.x (SOM) is a spam firewall for your vBulletin Forums version 4.x and later. It prevents known spammers from registering on your forums. If they can't register, they can't spam!

Languages Packs Available
English
German - Courtesy of Alex@bulletin (included in zip)
Romanian - Courtesy of Teascu Dorin's (included in zip)
Spanish - Courtesy of vbluis (included in zip)

How it Works
This data responsible for blocking user registrations comes from the stopforumspam.com (SFS) spammer database. After the user who is trying to register passes the built-in vBulletin registration checks which you have configured in your vBulletin settings, SOM then checks the SFS database to see if the IP, username, or email address that the user is trying to register with has been recently tagged as a known spam source on other forums around the Internet. Also can be configured to check the Akismet service for known comment spam.

This is without a doubt, one of the most important mods that you will be using on your forum.

Other Notable Stuff
It also does a ton of other cool stuff like moderating posts automatically if the post is found in the Akismet database, or if it contains words on your "Bad Words" keyword list which can be configured within the mod itself.

The mod WORKS with vBulletin's new Facebook integration.
This module works with all of the Facebook functions that are built into the vB4 series.
Similar mods do not handle Facebook integration completely.

This module has the ability to submit new spammer details to the StopForumSpam or Akismet databases automatically, all without any new templates or manual template modifications!

This means other forums that are running Spam-O-Matic will not have the same spammer on their forums if you have (automatically) reported the spammer to the SFS database.

Just install the product in the product manager, upload a few files, configure the system and you are done. (Estimated time: 5-10 minutes)

What's new in 2.1.0:
  • Fixed a problem with MySQL engine selection to make mod more compatible with different types of servers.
  • When SOM "Newbies Group" is activated + vB's native option to "Verify Email address in Registration" is activated at the same time, "Users Awaiting Email Confirmation" must click the verification link to become a newbie.
  • Added remove user, post, ban to user profile options in admincp under "Quick User Links"
  • Added German Language Pack
  • Optimized default settings to work with the needs of most forums
  • Added a new coupon for GlowHost (available after you submit a spammer)
  • Several other performance tuning options

Feature List:
  • Optional Public Statistics. Show off to the world how many bad guys you have automatically prevented from posting junk on your forum.
  • Auto-Moderation moderates posts that have links, bad words, and other configurable settings.
  • Auto-Moderation ignores your RSS posts.
  • Registration / Denial Logs available from Admincp > Statistics and Logs
  • Optional "Newbies" Manager! After registration, newly registered users can be placed in a "Newbies" group which has more limited permissions as compared to your regular "Registered Users" group. Newbies will graduate to your Registered Users group based on your required post count settings.
  • Auto-Submit Spammers from the moderation tools menu on each postbit.
  • Remove Posts, threads, PMs, Calendar Events from your spammer in one easy wizard. No double logins needed.
  • Shows other users who signed up with the same IP. (Sleeping Spammers)
  • Optional Affiliate System
  • ~50 customizable settings to fine-tune Spam-O-Matic to your exact needs.


A) StopForumSpam:
The StopForumSpam Module lets you:
  • Check a registrant's IP address.
  • Check a registrant's email address.
  • Check a registrants Username.
  • Disable or enable any of the above checks.
  • Block and log, or, allow and log known spammers.
  • All registration attempts are logged for your viewing pleasure.
  • Several other performance tuning options
If a user (or bot) tries to register on your forum and they pass the built-in vBulletin registration system. (Human verification, email verification, etc), their registration details are then passed to the Spam-O-Matic firewall for further checking.

NOTE: You should use some sort of human verification checking in vBulletin's built-in options to limit the number of requests to the already heavily-loaded StopForumSpam database servers. This will also prevent additional load because SOM will not have to do anything if the bot/spammer fails preliminary registration validation which is built-into vBulletin itself.

It is completely invisible to humans who are registering that this process is taking place. Bots are stopped dead in their tracks.

If a spammer is able to sneak past the first line of defense, and manages to post, then there are secondary, tertiary, and, uh...4th level protections too!

B) Auto-Moderation:
Auto Moderation lets you:
  • Define how many URLs a new member can post before being sent to moderation.
  • Define keywords that will send a post to Auto-moderation (viagra, porn, more here)
  • Define minimum post count to avoid Auto-moderation.
  • Excludes admin and moderators from Auto-moderation.
  • Completely disable Auto-moderation if you don't want it.
C) Akismet Service
Spammers that make it past the StopForumSpam and Auto-Moderation will be checked against the Akismet service. If they manage to make a post, and then are found on Akismet, they can be auto-moderated.

The Akismet settings let you:
  • Set the number of posts that Akismet will check from each user. After this number is exceeded, Akismet checking will be disabled for that user.
  • Auto-Submit spammers that post on your boards back to the Akismet service so that other forums and blogs do not do not receive the same spam.
  • Completely disable the Akismet service.
D) Newbies Manager
Should you decide to enable this option, you can create a new usergroup and then tell Spam-O-Matic about it. Once SOM knows about this usergroup, and once enabled, all new users will be part of the Newbies group. The idea here is that you make a Newbies group that has limited forum permissions. For example, no signatures, no BB code, no images, and etc. This group is created completely in the vB admincp. Spam-O-Matic simply makes it the graduation process to the normal Registered Users group, automatic.
Learn More and Discuss the Newbies Manager here.

Punitive Actions:
If you find a spammer has made it past your 4 front-lines of defense, and has managed to post on your forum, then you can help the community...

The spammer's details can be sent to the Stop Forum Spam and Akismet databases automatically, preventing them from registering or posting on other forums. When other forums do the same, the protection is reciprocated.

Simply moderate a post and choose the option to "Delete Posts As Spam..." an then choose the option to "Ban User." Banning the user sends their details to either Akismet, StopForumSpam, (or both) depending on how you set it up.

API Keys:
API Keys are not required for this system to stop spammers on your forums. But you should obtain them so that your forum can contribute to the real-time block lists.

A StopForumSpam API key is required if you want to contribute to the StopForumSpam blacklists by adding your spammers to their database. By submitting spammers you help keep other forums and blogs clean.

An Akismet API key is required if you want to enable any Akismet auto-moderation features in this module. Akismet API key is not required for all Auto-Moderation functions.

You can obtain a Stop Forum Spam API key which is free from stopforumspam.com.

Get your StopForumSpam API Key Here

You can obtain an Akismet API key from Akismet.com.
Akismet offers free and paid API keys so choose your version based on your situation.

Get your Akismet API Key Here

Why it is better than the other anti-spam solutions on vBulletin.org:
  • Works with all of vBulletin 4 functions including Facebook automatic registration.
  • Report spammers that you find to the Stop Forum Spam Database.
  • Report spammers that you find to the Akismet Database.
  • Built-in Auto-moderation.
  • Auto-moderation rules based on post count.
  • Auto-moderation rules based keywords.
  • Auto-moderation rules based Akismet results.
  • Enable or disable any actions that you do not want.
  • Customizable "Registration Rejected" message.
  • Consolidates 4 popular methods of spam prevention into one product.
  • No Manual Template Modifications!
  • Lots of community support!
======================
Compatibility:
vBulletin 4.0.x

Server Requirements:
Curl or allow_url_fopen must be compiled/enabled into PHP. Ask your web host to enable curl or allow_url_fopen if it is not already available on your server's PHP configuration. (Or just host with GlowHost.com, where it already is

=====================
Donations:

If you like this mod, sure, you can donate!

Donations can be all sorts of things:
1) The "Give Thanks" option in your settings is an optional link back to GlowHost Web Hosting.
2) Tell your friends and others about this mod.
3) If you are in need of web hosting, please consider ordering it from the hosting and development professionals at GlowHost.com who were able to develop this mod to you.
4) Help others who are having trouble with this mod by posting tips and suggestions in this forum thread.
5) Cash! Use the "Support Developer" option on the top right of this page.

When you choose to donate, you are contributing to the product development, bug fixes and new releases for SOM and are helping to feed our hungry developers and their families! In other words, your donations helps to cover the time and money spent to develop this system.

The entire team at GlowHost thanks you for your help and support!

We hope you enjoy the mod!

=====================
Installation:

1) Download the attached file
2) Mark As Installed
3) SOM 2.x does not support updates from the v1.x series.
When upgrading to version 2.x, please, be sure to remove any other existing version of SOM 1.x from the product manager before installing v2.x series. Also make sure to remove /forum/includes/xml/bitfield_glowhostspamomatic.xml from version 1 if you had it installed.

4) Extract the zip file, and view the readme file for the rest of the instructions.

=====================

Original concept credits go to the authors of vBStopForumSpam, MonkeyStop.

Download Now

Only licensed members can download files, Click Here for more information.

Screenshots

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Show Your Support

  • To receive notifications regarding updates -> Click to Mark as Installed.
  • If you like this modification support the author by donating.
  • This modification may not be copied, reproduced or published elsewhere without author's permission.
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  #46  
Old 08 Aug 2010, 23:25
BadgerDog BadgerDog is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Real name: Doug
Originally Posted by GlowHost.com View Post
Spam-O-Matic runs every post from every user through Akismet for every post always every time.

A future version may have an option to only check the first "x" posts that a user makes using the Akismet service.

You might be able to do what you want to do by disabling Akismet (remove your API key and/or set Akismet: Auto-submit from Moderation Tools to "No" in Spam-O-Matic and then using the vB Akismet services which better do what you are trying to accomplish.
Thanks ...

I think that's what's happening and why our registered member with 18 posts got stuck in moderation. Spam-O-Matic is checking every post through Akismet, instead of only checking the first post (that's when you nail spammers), which is the way we had the VBulletin Akismet set (stop checking after first post).

I'll turn OFF your Akismet and leave ON vBulletin's until you are able to add that option. I'll also continue testing for you ...

Regards,
Badger
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  #47  
Old 08 Aug 2010, 23:26
TheLastSuperman's Avatar
TheLastSuperman TheLastSuperman is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Real name: Michael Miller Jr
Originally Posted by GlowHost.com View Post
OK Superman, here it is so you do not have to read 3 pages:

Disable the built in spam settings in vBulletin and use Spam-O-Matic instead.

There is not enough feedback yet to list "common" bugs or known issues, that is why I have reserved the first post for FAQ. This thread is here to find known issues, take feedback for enhancements, and bugs so they can be added to the main page.
There's enough confusion on the first three pages that need to be made very clear, you might think I'm being rude I just want everyone to actually benefit from your mod, if they can't understand something or become confused because it's not made clear in the actual Modification post then they will quit and not even try to install you should know this from being on here so long "Join Date: 22 Nov 2005".

Also, posting on page three will not save others from searching up until page three or backtracking if this ever reaches let's say page 40 etc so simply modify the modification info and put that bold text up there .

Ok back to work for me, you handle your mod, like I said I like the concept but was simply taken back reading your post about being unaware of the default settings especially since your a "Host" that most likely releases free mods to get more vBulletin clients.
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  #48  
Old 08 Aug 2010, 23:53
GlowHost.com's Avatar
GlowHost.com GlowHost.com is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
@Badger
Thanks for the feedback and testing

@Superman
Changed first page (again) the mod is only a few days old to for release to the public so yes the description being constantly updated. Hopefully the first page says everything there is to know now. FAQ also added.

Still waiting to here if there are other users that have RSS issues, I can't duplicate them. If you find a way to duplicate the problem with specific examples, let us know.
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  #49  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 03:33
sas forum sas forum is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Quick question. I installed the mod and ran into users getting tagged by akismet checking every post. I will disable that feature after reading the previous posts.

I was looking at the logs and it lists like 116 entries. I just installed the mod today and I know I have never had 116 new registrations in one day. Where are all these log entries pulled from? I am just curious since I see a lot of usernames that say "Allowed registration" and I don't see them in my member list.
I did notice that some of the usernames are linked, which leads me to believe that those specific usernames are legit new registrations for my site.


Thanks for this mod. We are hoping it catches the spammers trying to register so we don't have to worry about them
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  #50  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 08:32
GlowHost.com's Avatar
GlowHost.com GlowHost.com is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Yes, the linked users are the ones that were really allowed registration. There is a known issue with the logs making duplicate entries and sometimes saying "allowed registration" for users who were really not allowed.

It will be fixed in a later release, it is a cosmetic bug and not a functionality bug.

As for the high number of log entries, that is normal even without the dupes. There are lots of bots running around out there that get denied on the default human verification settings or just give up or die in the registration process. Spam-O-Matic tries to tag them all.
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  #51  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 09:01
sas forum sas forum is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Originally Posted by GlowHost.com View Post
Yes, the linked users are the ones that were really allowed registration. There is a known issue with the logs making duplicate entries and sometimes saying "allowed registration" for users who were really not allowed.

It will be fixed in a later release, it is a cosmetic bug and not a functionality bug.

As for the high number of log entries, that is normal even without the dupes. There are lots of bots running around out there that get denied on the default human verification settings or just give up or die in the registration process. Spam-O-Matic tries to tag them all.
wow, I forgot all about the bots not getting past the recaptcha stuff. Thanks for the info. I really like this mod. Good job and thank you for sharing.
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  #52  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 09:56
cfish's Avatar
cfish cfish is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Great mod, thank you - this will really help reduce spam.

I have 1 problem with it at the moment. When trying to ban a spammer, I get a 404 because (for security reasons) I changed the name of both modcp and admincp folders but your mod does not recognise this. As this is such a common situation, you really need to add those variables to the options page.
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  #53  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 10:20
GlowHost.com's Avatar
GlowHost.com GlowHost.com is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Originally Posted by sas forum View Post
wow, I forgot all about the bots not getting past the recaptcha stuff. Thanks for the info. I really like this mod. Good job and thank you for sharing.
Sure! glad you like it. Don't forget to give the mod a rating and vote it for MOTM

Originally Posted by cfish View Post
Great mod, thank you - this will really help reduce spam.

I have 1 problem with it at the moment. When trying to ban a spammer, I get a 404 because (for security reasons) I changed the name of both modcp and admincp folders but your mod does not recognise this. As this is such a common situation, you really need to add those variables to the options page.
I will put it on the list for possible enhancements if this is something that a lot of other people want. Though I think that if you ask around, the moving of those directories doesn't really do that much good and is more of a hassle than it is worth when dealing with administrative tasks such as mods and upgrades.
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  #54  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 16:34
BadgerDog BadgerDog is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Real name: Doug
Ok, update ...

Still getting members placed in moderation and can't find a pattern as one had over 500 posts and the other just 2 posts. One thing in common was that they posted one (1) link in their post.

Settings in Spam-O-Matic as follows:

Auto-Moderation: URL Count = 0 (academic since according to previous instructions, the "Minimum Post Count" at 0 should turn OFF this function anyway)

Auto-Moderation: Minimum Post Count = 0

Akismet as handled by Spam-O-Matic was disabled ...

Vbulletin Akisment was left ON ....

So, before we un-install Spam-O-Matic and go back to vBStopForum mod which was working fine (even with vBulletin's Akismet running), we're going to turn vBulletin Akismet handling OFF completely and turn Spam-O-Matic Akismet handling ON, although checking every post of every user group is a waste of time most of the time (really needs that "above x posts not checked") function.

We've left the moderation settings at "0" and "0" ... hopefully disabled.

Anyway, let's see what happens with this set-up, which is now mutually exclusive to the two Akismet handlers.

Thanks ..

Regards,
Badger
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  #55  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 17:34
sas forum sas forum is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
I also had the issue with legit members getting their posts put into moderation. We have had zero spammers make it to posting in 2 years with about 4400 members registered and a couple hundred thousand posts. Our big thing is catching them when they register and booting them before they do harm. That is why this mod rocks, it does a lot of the leg work for us.

We have a forum that is specific to a certain activity, so we added some mandatory fields in the registration that would be well known by people that would join up, but spammers just end up typing "test", "asdfg" or "Russia" or whatever. Combined with manually approving new registrations, this dropped our spammers to zero.

We disabled the checking of the posts in the forum because it is not really needed right now.

On a side note, we did find that a few years ago we had some spammers sign up and just start sending spam via private messages. We simply made it so new members with less than x posts cannot pm. once they hit the magic number the pms are turned on. When that first started, we found that we caught every spammer with the standard akismet anti-spam that came with vbulletin, and deleted them before they could do harm. This mod catches the spammers before we even have to deal with them. nice.

This is a nice mod.
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  #56  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 18:35
cfish's Avatar
cfish cfish is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Originally Posted by GlowHost.com View Post
I will put it on the list for possible enhancements if this is something that a lot of other people want. Though I think that if you ask around, the moving of those directories doesn't really do that much good and is more of a hassle than it is worth when dealing with administrative tasks such as mods and upgrades.
I'm not talking about moving directories, I'm talking about the common practice of renaming them. This is supported as standard by vB. There is a setting in config.php that allows you to do this easily witout any upgrade hassle etc. It's a standard thing and this mod either needs to get the setting from the vB config file or if that's not possible, allow the admin to configure it on the options page. Any security conscious forum admin will do that as standard.

Extract from config.php:


Block Disabled:      (Update License Status)  
Suspended or Unlicensed Members Cannot View Code.

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  #57  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 18:53
GlowHost.com's Avatar
GlowHost.com GlowHost.com is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Sorry, I was thinking of the Linux commandline when I said "Move" which is the Windows equivalent of "Rename." I usually work in Linux so I got your idea and was talking using Linux speak, sorry for confusing you.

As I said we have it on the list, based on if many others need this we will consider it. AFAIK this "renaming" is not very popular, but we will see.
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  #58  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 19:56
cfish's Avatar
cfish cfish is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Originally Posted by GlowHost.com View Post
As I said we have it on the list, based on if many others need this we will consider it. AFAIK this "renaming" is not very popular, but we will see.
OK. Can you give me a workaround in the meantime?

I found 2 instances of "modcp" in functions_vbghsfs.php on lines 290 and 534 and changed them to my own modcp name and although I no longer get a 404, neither the remove or ban actions will work. I get an uninformative message and when I click OK, nothing happens.

gh-action.png
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  #59  
Old 09 Aug 2010, 20:18
GlowHost.com's Avatar
GlowHost.com GlowHost.com is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Originally Posted by cfish View Post
OK. Can you give me a workaround in the meantime?

I found 2 instances of "modcp" in functions_vbghsfs.php on lines 290 and 534 and changed them to my own modcp name and although I no longer get a 404, neither the remove or ban actions will work. I get an uninformative message and when I click OK, nothing happens.
Unfortunately I can't give you any workarounds at this time as we are busy working on other more pressing areas in the current version like improving the logs and improving the Akismet functionality.

Once we are done in those areas we can probably spend some time looking at your request, but these were not part our original plans so it will take some research for me to be able to give you a workaround., well, one that works properly anyways.

If I find a workaround, I will probably just include it in a future release instead of in a random post in this thread which will be unlikely to be read or found.
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Last edited by GlowHost.com : 09 Aug 2010 at 20:24.
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  #60  
Old 10 Aug 2010, 11:37
BadgerDog BadgerDog is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Real name: Doug
Ok, another update ...

Still getting members placed in moderation and can't find a pattern as one had over 644 posts and the other just 8 posts. The 644 post member placed a post with one (1) link in their post while the 8 post member just mad a regular post with nothing obvious that would trigger it being placed in moderation.

Settings in Spam-O-Matic as follows:

Auto-Moderation: URL Count = 0 (academic since according to previous instructions, the "Minimum Post Count" at 0 should turn OFF this function anyway)

Auto-Moderation: Minimum Post Count = 0

Akismet as handled by Spam-O-Matic is ENABLED with ID.

Vbulletin Akisment handling was OFF ...

Not sure what to do next, but as much as we think that this mod has nice potential and its author is making efforts to sort it out, we're going to have to un-install Spam-O-Matic and go back to vBStopForum mod which was working fine, even with vBulletin's Akismet running concurrently.

Perhaps we'll try it later on when the "kinks" have been worked out ...

Thanks for everyone's efforts ...

Regards,
Badger
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