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Re: Last Call: draft-klensin-rfc2821bis

2008-03-29 09:09:58
in addition to that, the number of Internet hosts that want to support 
email is already a small fraction of the whole. this can be expected to 
get even more negligible in an IPv6 world where there are enough 
addresses to network every device you might ever want to control or 

Henning Schulzrinne wrote:
One of the problems I have seen first-hand is "disappearing" mail. 
Example: A webserver sends outbound email directly, but doesn't want to 
receive inbound email. The hostname leaks and mail gets sent to that 
address, based  on the A(AAA) record. The mail is "received", but 
disappears into some never-seen /var file. In that case, the sender 
never suspects that anything is amiss; it would be much better if the 
sender got an immediate "sorry, that domain name doesn't support email 
service" error.

Even if you turn off sendmail, as someone has pointed out earlier, the 
sending MTA will retry for several days until giving up, thus delaying 
error notification that would be immediate otherwise in this particular 

You can obviously turn off sendmail local delivery, but many of the 
standard web hosting (cPanel and kin, but also the standard RH mail 
setup) arrangements don't make it particularly easy to have 
outbound-only sendmail.

Thus, disabling AAAA checking seems to provide much cleaner error 
behavior. The 'MX 0' proposals would achieve some of the same results, 
but removing the AAAA lookup is default-safe, rather than requiring 
operator action. It's too late to change the A behavior, but there 
doesn't seem to be a reason to perpetuate this violation of the 
principle of least surprise.


On Mar 29, 2008, at 10:34 AM, Theodore Tso wrote:
On Sat, Mar 29, 2008 at 10:16:10AM -0400, Keith Moore wrote:
I think it is time to put an end to specious arguments.

These standards get used for decades.  I don't think it's appropriate to
cripple them because of some arrangement that happens to exist now from
a few dysfunctional DNS providers.  Providers will get more flexible as
the need becomes apparent, and domain owners who have problems with
their DNS providers can change providers.  It's not difficult.

So I must be missing something, probably because I deleted without
reading closely enough one of the earlier messages on this thread.
But please indulge me --- exactly what is the benefit of deprecating
the "A" fallback, and/or not doing a lookup on the AAAA record if the
MX record doesn't exist?  Is it the load on the nameservers that
people would believe would be reduced if we didn't do this?  Is that
really a problem?  Or is it something else?

                    - Ted
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