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I collected a bunch of email addresses, but they are not verified.

I now want to manually sort out obvious false ones (like test@test.com).

I'm looking for a tool / program / service that helps me (I'm aware that this can still be a lot of manual work).

Is there a tool that let me prefilter against i.e. all addresses that contains "asdf" or "test". (Tried open office calc, but not happy with the UI so far)

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3 Answers

That's completely the wrong way to verify email addresses. asdf@theirdomain.com and test@theirdomain.com could be valid email addresses. You can't use any method to determine that someone will get your email, without sending an email.

Fortunately, there's a much better way. You send them a single email with a unique link to click on (as soon as possible after acquiring the address, so they remember you). If they click the link you have a valid email address, and you can send them mail, providing you honor unsubscribe requests.

If they don't click on that link, then you do not have permission to send them mail. If you send them mail anyway, then you are sending SPAM, and eventually a lot of your mail will get blocked.

See also this:

For general advice on running a mailing list have a look at this:

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Thanks for the answer. I'm considering verifying the email in the future. However, for now I looking for an tool, that helps me doing manual sorting. Any suggestions? –  Aron Woost Jun 20 '11 at 12:08
    
Ah, and thanks for the links. Again, I'm aware, that there is no way to verify them 100% without sending them. I just filter out obviously false ones. –  Aron Woost Jun 20 '11 at 12:11
    
honestly; don't do it. False confidence is worse than none. Even email addresses that you think are obviously false might not be. Even Test.com, Inc. use email. And once you've guessed your "not-fake" addresses, you've still got to verify them anyway, if you want to send email to them. So why bother? –  Colin Pickard Jun 20 '11 at 12:16
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Maybe editors such as vim and emacs can help you.

For example, in vim you can use /asdf to find all "asdf" substring in a document, then you can use dd to delete the whole line if the e-mail addresses are stored separated in lines.

Regular expressions are also available in vim, for example you may use /.*asdf.*@.*\n//gc if you want to delete all ".asdf.@.*" pattern stuff with a confirmation or /.*asdf.*@.*\n//g to do this without that.

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My former employers, DeskShare, have a product called Smart Email Verifier that's better than a manual editor. Disclaimer: I have no current business relationship with DeskShare and will receive no compensation should you purchase SEV.

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