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Re: MIME's "Content-Disposition" Header

1995-01-18 09:58:36
Harald(_dot_)T(_dot_)Alvestrand(_at_)uninett(_dot_)no writes:

If something is orthogonal to the Content-disposition: header,
to the degree that it makes sense to have

Content-disposition: inline; filename=foo
Content-disposition: foo; filename=bar

then it is IMHO much cleaner to have

Content-disposition: inline; filename=foo
Content-foo-handling-directive: filename=bar

That is, don't mess with the Content-disposition header.

You are probably right about that. One practical complication,
though, is that disposition types will be as easily registered
with IANA as content types, while new Content-* header fields can't
be registered at all. An RFC that defines the new header must be
written and accepted and published.

Considering the present chaos as regards non-standardized header
names, and the following provision of RFC 822, IANA registration
of new header names is both needed and justified, in my opinion.

:      4.7.4.  EXTENSION-FIELD
:              A limited number of common fields have  been  defined  in
:         this  document.   As  network mail requirements dictate, addi-
:         tional fields may be standardized.   To  provide  user-defined
:         fields  with  a  measure  of  safety,  in name selection, such
:         extension-fields will never have names  that  begin  with  the
:         string "X-".
:              Names of Extension-fields are registered with the Network
:         Information Center, SRI International, Menlo Park, California.

For a start all headers defined in RFCs published after RFC 822
should be registered. A useful starting point for that task is,
I think, the document "Internet Standardized Message
Attributes", written by Jacob Palme and published in
comp.mail.headers 14 Nov 1994 in message

Olle Jarnefors, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm 

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