This article is outdated. Defensio made many changes which now requires Fsockopen. Instead of current one, please read this article to defend your blog against comment spam.

Numerous people are making use of free servers to host their websites. Using free servers, not to cite have their own drawbacks. Limits on file size, space, bandwidth, etc. are just few to name. Most obnoxious restrictions are disabling of cURL, Fsockopen, SMTP and PHP sockets. So, why you require these stuffs on your server? Let’s take a quick review.

All these PHP sockets are used to connect to ports and servers, then get data, validate data, etc. Now, how it can affect you, me and all of us?

Many wordpress plug-in are out there, which needs connection to an external server. This helps your site to send data and then get validated data back. Yeah! You got it right! Akismet is no exception and that is why it doesn’t work with such servers.

Then, what shall we do? Let our blog being spammed by those grimy people? No way.

There is an alternative to Akismet for fighting against spam. Defensio! Finally, a substitute and an option is available.

Defensio is a new “comment anti-spam” plug-in, which is now available. It has a different layout and interface. It needs an API to work, which is available for free to Personal users. The most amazing discovery I made is that it’s working perfectly without any PHP sockets like Fsockopen, cURL etc.

It also provides Facebook protection, Malicious checks, Categorized blocking, Profanity checks with masking, web address checking, etc. You can check the statistics on your account at Defensio which can be logged in only from Sites Dashboard. It supports WordPress, AintaBlog, Drupal, DotClear, Facebook and a lot of other.

I tested it and it is stopping spam perfectly on my blog even when all PHP sockets (fsockopen, cURL etc.) are disabled by my host. It just shows an error related to stream_set_timeout(), that too only on Dashboard. Oh! Come on, you can hide it by making PHP errors OFF in your .htaccess (in the root of your website). I am still trying to figure out that how it is working, but that’s not really important. Many sites have reported that it is working for them.

Another good thing you can do to stop ‘automated spam comments’ is to install CAPTCHA. I would recommend Si-captcha plugin. No one will be able to bombshell your blog with spam if every comment needs to go through a CAPTCHA.

So, what are you waiting for? Deactivate Akismet, Install Defensio, get your API key and get started. Even on a shared or disabled server you will get anti-spam protection.

Let’s fight the Spam.

P.S: Please report back in comments, if it doesn’t work for you.

By Mrinal Buddekar

Data Manager and a technology enthusiast! Mrinal Buddekar is Pune based blogger who loves building server, websites, technology, and affiliate blogging.

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