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Re: 2822upd-04 line length limits

2008-01-27 10:48:58

On 1/26/08 at 10:47 PM -0500, Bruce Lilly wrote:

Section 2.1.1 states in part:

     Again, even though this limitation is
   put on messages, it is incumbant upon implementations which display
   messages to handle an arbitrarily large number of characters in a
   line (certainly at least up to the 998 character limit) for the sake
   of robustness.

[off-topic] "incumbant" should be "incumbent". A spell-checker can find this and many other similar errors in the text...

[off-topic] A spell-checker found exactly *one* similar error in the text...

No! The MIME RFCs specifically state that lines (in header or body) which use MIME encoding are limited to 76 (N.B. not 78 or 998) characters.

I agree with Frank's comments in later messages with regard to this (and 3.5 below): MIME can extend (or limit) this document in any way it seems fit. However, it most certainly is incumbent upon implementations to deal with longer lines than MIME allows. I don't think you're going to find much support at all for your position.

Section 2.3 states in part (I'll address the other part in a separate message):

      Note: As was stated earlier, there are other documents,
      specifically the MIME documents ([RFC2045], [RFC2046], [RFC2049],
      [RFC4288], [RFC4289]), that extend this specification to allow for
      different sorts of message bodies.  Again, these mechanisms are
      beyond the scope of this document.

Note (as stated above) that the MIME RFCs *limit* line lengths to 76 characters when MIME encoding is used. The text "extend this specification" might be misinterpreted (76 characters is a *limitation*, not an *extension*) w.r.t. line length limits. At a minimum, some clarification of this point is needed in the draft text.

Happy to clarify.

Pete Resnick <>
Qualcomm Incorporated - Direct phone: (858)651-4478, Fax: (858)651-1102

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