[Top] [All Lists]

Re: Problems with Messages over 50000 bytes

1992-06-17 15:45:25
I would like to bring to your attention a mailing list problem
I have been experiencing with the Internet Monthly Report.  It 
appears that some Internet hosts, and Internet gateways have 
arbitrarily set limits on the size of a message (for example, 
50,000 bytes) they will process.  

Compuserve users and MCIMAIL users have a real problem receiving 
large messages, so many of these users have asked to be removed 
from the Internet Monthly Report mailing list.

To complicate things further Compuserve users and MCIMAIL users 
are listed on the IETF list, and everyone on the IETF list 
automatically is sent a copy of the Internet Monthly Report.  

What can be done about requiring hosts on the Internet to accept large
messages, in particular over 50,000 bytes?

Several other people have commented (correctly) on the technical solutions to
this problem insofar as evolving e-mail standards go. I don't have anything to
add to this, but I do want to take this opportunity to describe an actual
implementation of these solutions that is available _now_.

The mail software I'm responsible for, PMDF, supports automatic fragmenting and
defragmenting of messages using MIME formats. This can be configured on a
per-remote-host basis. We're working on doing this using information obtained
from an SMTP negotiation as well; but this isn't interesting to you anyway
since as far as I know nobody else supports the draft SMTP extensions for size
negotiation yet. So this means that the best we can do for now is have a table
of hosts and sizes and refer to that. This is cumbersome, but it does work.

PMDF is a commercial product, and while I'd be delighted for you to purchase it
I don't expect you to do so just to solve this problem. However, I am more than
willing to set up a redistribution point on our system here that can do this
fragmentation for you. You would then move all the problem addresses to this
sublist and subscribe the sublist to the main list.

I am also willing to either maintain the sublist for you (in response to your
requests to change it), provide you with an account so you can edit it
yourself, or set it up so that you can update the list with e-mail message
(PMDF includes a server which can do this).

My willingness to do this is partly just because it seems like a good thing to
do and partly because I'd like to see the features of MIME get used.

Innosoft is soon to be connected with a direct line to ISI, so the overhead of
doing this should be pretty minimal.