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Re: 8-bit transmission in NNTP
- To: IETF Mail Extensions WG <ietf-822@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, IETF SMTP Extensions WG <ietf-smtp@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: Re: 8-bit transmission in NNTP
- From: John Gardiner Myers <jgm+@xxxxxxx>
- Date: Sat, 10 Sep 1994 22:08:06 -0400 (EDT)
- Beak: Is
- In-reply-to: <199409101954.AA28415@dkuug.dk>
- References: <199409101954.AA28415@dkuug.dk>
This question needs to be brought up somewhere where the authors of
current news transport software will notice, like news.software.b
This is an issue that needs to be dealt with soon.
INN is 8-bit clean, Christophe Wofhugel reports that Bnews strips the
8th bit. (Then again, Bnews munges a lot of stuff.) Presumably,
C-News is 8-bit clean or Christophe would have mentioned that to me.
There are a lot of 8-bit "enclaves" in netnews. The relcom.*
hierarchy, for example, is a just-send-koi8-r set of russian-language
groups. The last time the topic was flamed on news.groups, the
Russian correspondents seemed to be particularly resistant to the idea
of MIME transfer-encoding, it being an American invention which didn't
take account of the way they do things there. Other enclaves
MIME-label their bodies, but I doubt many of them 1522-encode their
Henry Spencer's son-of-1036 draft specifies that news is 7bit, but
has a lot of wording permitting "cooperating subnets" to use 8bit
data. It also states that transmission paths SHOULD be 8-bit clean.
The "cooperating subnets" wording includes the option for a relayer on
a "subnet boundary" to re-encode an 8bit article with a MIME tranfer
encoding in order to pass it out of the "subnet". I may not quite be
a news Old Fart(tm), but I remember the pain and aggravation caused by
Bnews' rewriting article headers in transit. I shudder to think of
the effect that body rewriting will have.
INN already has an option in it's news transfer part to tranfer-encode
8bit messages of top-level primary type "text" in quoted-printable.
Christophe reports this is used to feed a few "stupid" sites "running
Bnews or some very old other software".
If there is going to be some restriction on 8-bit characters in news,
be it "no 8bit characters in headers" or "no 8bit characters at all",
it has to be enforced by the news transmission software. People are
going to inject such articles into news, and if the articles don't get
dropped on the floor, people are going to see that "it just works
I think there will fairly soon be need for a News WG, with a different
focus than the late NNTP WG.
_.John G. Myers Internet: jgm+@CMU.EDU