Andrew Moran wrote:

[...]

> Has anyone heard of this?   Or any pointers on what I can do to figure  
> out what is causing it?
> 
> Your advice is much appreciated.

As an alternative:

You could try mail/mimedefang. It calls spamassassin to evaluate an
e-mail but without having it running all the time. This can solve your
problem of running out of memory.

For instance, sendmail could be the first line of defence with its own
rules (rDNS, noMX, RBLs and what not). Then mimedefang with a set of
rules to further reject dodgy e-mails (helo/ehlo, spoofings, SPF and so
on). After that, spamassassin comes into play (controlled by
mimedefang), but only at the end as a last line of defence. By the time
it gets to the end, a lion's share has already been rejected and that
means less work for spamassassin.


I hope this helps.


Regards,
Mikhail.
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