[Top] [All Lists]

Re: Do the must 'bounce' rules need to be relaxed for virus infected messages?

2004-03-26 06:43:39

bz writes:
If you want to give an error message to the party who actually sent you the e-mail you need to know the real 'reverse path'. This may have nothing to do with the SMTP client the message was receive from.

You're assuming that there _is_ a reverse-path for the sending party. For a lot of mail here isn't, particularly the sort of mail most people want to reject (spam and virii).

But there is a TCP connection to the sending SMTP client. That TCP connection is real and dependable. An SMTP server can use that TCP connection to give an error message, and it will _not_ be giving that error message to some unfortunate bystander.

The SMTP client may not be able to deal well with the error message. That's irrelevant in theory and unimportant in practice.

Theory first: The SMTP server cannot force the SMTP client to handle the error message well, but it never can. No SMTP server can force its client to be well written.

Then practice: The mail you want to reject typically is spam and virii, and the SMTP engines built into virii and spam software typically don't forward bounces to third parties. Ergo, no big problem in practice.