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Re: [idn] Re: 7 bits forever!

2002-04-02 01:09:43

By the way, in case anyone thinks that my sarcastic ``7 bits forever!''
is an exaggeration, here's an old quote from Mark Crispin: ``7-bit MTA's
will never go away. Ever. Mail goes on many paths besides IP, some of
which are forever 7-bits. You will always have to solve the problem of
getting your 8-bit mail into 7-bits for some 7-bit MTA.''

It is reasonable to demand time to upgrade, so that there are no
interoperability problems. It is not reasonable to demand that this
7-bit garbage be allowed to remain on the network forever, at the
expense of all future implementors and users.

Sorry to bother you with the facts, but the 8BITMIME requirement that
you're mindlessly imitating is flagrantly violated in practice by many
MTAs, including most versions of sendmail.
qmail announces 8BITMIME support without actually implementing it, too.

Of course. Announcing 8BITMIME in the SMTP server benefits the users.
Deliberately ignoring the 8BITMIME requirements in the SMTP client also
benefits the users.

I thought it was clear that I was criticizing 8BITMIME, not sendmail's
violation of it. Essentially everything that sendmail has done wrong
with 8-bit support has complied with the relevant IETF specifications,
and essentially everything that sendmail has done right with 8-bit
support has violated the relevant IETF specifications.

---D. J. Bernstein, Associate Professor, Department of Mathematics,
Statistics, and Computer Science, University of Illinois at Chicago

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