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Re: [Fwd: I-D ACTION:draft-crocker-email-arch-06.txt]

2007-03-09 11:41:53

On Fri, 09 Mar 2007 10:13:47 +0100, Arnt Gulbrandsen said:
What does generic mean in this context?

There seems to be at least six completely unrelated, compatible
implementations of sieve from different vendors. That's more than
enough to demonstrate interoperability in the eyes of the IETF and five
more than any other mail filtering specification I've heard of, so it
would seem reasonable to describe it as a standard mail filtering
agent, or even _the_ standard mail filtering agent. IMHO.

First of all, I personally could not care less if the architecture document
has the word "sieve" in its diagrams or not.

Having said that...

On the other hand, how often do you see example procmail recipes posted to
accomplish some given end, and how often do you see people post SIEVE scripts
to do something?

In my neck of the woods it's well over 10 to 1 - in favor of Sieve.

What about SpamAssassin filters, and Sendmail Milters that
do filtering?

Now you're comparing apples and oranges and pears. Sieve is not intended to be
a platform for writing general purpose anti-spam and anti-virus filters and
anyone who attempts to do so in Sieve is a fool. Rather, Sieve provides a means
for users to implement simple but safe server-side filters. To this end, it
often makes sense to make the results of SA analysis available to Sieve scripts
and there are extensions defined for exactly this purpose.

As for milter, it's a general-purpose MTA callout mechanism, not a filtering
facility per se.

I'll posit that although there aren't as many independent vendors for
Spamassassin or procmail, that more mail actually gets filtered by them
than by SIEVE.

SA and the multitude of other commercial and noncommercial antispam and
antivirue facilities undoubtedly process far more mail than Sieve
implementations do, but as I say, their roles are complimentary, not

As for procmail, I think you seriously underestimate the extent to which Sieve
is now used by large ISPs. A lot of the time the fact that Sieve is being used
is entirely hidden. At most users see some sort of filter setup GUI, and
sometimes not even that.