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From Jason Haar <>
Subject large unicode email nails CPU
Date Tue, 04 Aug 2009 01:17:30 GMT
Hi there

We're got a few people subscribed to Serbian mailing-lists, and one in 
particular is having difficulty getting email to us - spamc/spamd times 
out and is never able to process the message. While it is running, spamd 
takes 100% of the CPU for 1.5+minutes.

Here's an example:

strace shows spamd running around looking for unicore/lib/gc_sc files - 
which is related to unicode "stuff". I don't know if that's the problem 
- but that's all I could find. "spamassassin -D " doesn't show anything 
strange other than massively long times to process DNSBLs. They are not 
believable: the "slow" DNSBLs change from invocation to invocation (of 
the same message), and "dig" shows no such issues - the DNSBLs SA says 
are taking 99sec to complete return instantly via dig (and yes, local 
caching DNS). Also, it is specifically a problem with these emails - in 
general we are not seeing any problems with any other email.

We've also got SA in several countries, all on CentOS5 servers 
(perl-5.8.8,spamassassin-3.2.5-1) and they all show the same symptoms - 
so I don't think it's network related but rather CPU: basically these 
emails nail SA and it's slow to finish for them?

Any ideas? Thanks!


Jason Haar
Information Security Manager, Trimble Navigation Ltd.
Phone: +64 3 9635 377 Fax: +64 3 9635 417
PGP Fingerprint: 7A2E 0407 C9A6 CAF6 2B9F 8422 C063 5EBB FE1D 66D1

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