[approved] RFC 5064 Archived-At header

2008-07-16 11:19:43
Hash: SHA1

Hello MHonArc and Mailman developers.

RFC 5064 describes the Archived-At header, which is used to point directly to the archived version of a mailing list mail message. The value of this header could also be used in a message body footer, such as the type that Mailman typically adds to its list copy of the message. Supporting this would be a big improvement in usability for mailing lists and is an often requested feature of Mailman.

We have been having some off-list discussions recently between Jeff Marshall and Jeff Breidenbach of the, Earl Hood of the MHonArc project and myself on approaches that would provide for support of RFC 5064 Archived-At headers. The RFC itself is agnostic on how to calculate the value of this header, but it does provide some suggestions. On the mailman-developers mailing list a while ago we discussed several ways of calculating this header, and in our private discussions, we've refined our thoughts. We're now at something of an impasse, where the specific approach requires us to make some trade- offs between implementation choices and usability. It's now time to get your feedback.

I've just updated the current proposal on the Mailman wiki:

See specifically the Open Issues section. The most straight-forward way to implement this leads to long, unusable (in our opinion) urls. Shortening the urls would require quite a bit of additional implementation complexity. What to do?

It's time to open this up to your ideas, but let me say that from Mailman(3)'s perspective, the exact algorithm probably doesn't matter much. I have a bzr branch that implements the interfaces and infrastructure for archiver plugins, so if MHonArc, Pipermail, and all chose different algorithms, we can fairly easily write a different plugin for each. Still, it would be good to standardize on a usable, implementable approach.

I invite you to read the wiki page, and comment either there or as a follow up to this message. I am not on the mhonarc-dev mailing list.

- -Barry
P.S. mhonarc-devs: I apologize in advance for the replybot on my email address.

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