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RFC 498 - On mail service to CCN


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NETWORK WORKING GROUP                                   ROBERT T. BRADEN
RFC #498                                                UCLA/CCN
NIC #15715                                              APRIL 17, 1973

                         ON MAIL SERVICE TO CCN

    Most of the recent documents on mail protocols have discussed the
facilities desired at "post-office" hosts, i.e. those which provide
store-and-forward services. CCN has no plans to provide post-office
services; we expect to receive mail only for the staff of CCN.  Our
greatest concern is to get messages reliably to and from our
administrative and user support people who don't habitually use on-line
terminals, so we are printing out all mail and distributing it by
courier/secretary.

    Let me say a friendly word for SNDMSG.  This Tenex command, which
uses the FTP MAIL command to deliver messages, is very simple but
extremely useful--probably because it is so simple.  Furthermore, it is
one of the well-kept secrets of the Network that SNDMSG can be used to
send messages to any host which supports the MAIL command (without
requiring logon to FTP).  Thus, to send a message to anyone at CCN, the
recommended procedure is to do SNDMSG to "name@CCN".  This connects to
CCN's FTP and sends a "MAIL name" command followed by the message.  We
now accept any "name" and print an immediate upper-case copy which is
distributed to the recipient's office.  So, if you SNDMSG to
"BRADEN@CCN", your message will end up on my desk, usually within a few
hours.  Other useful SNDMSG destination at CCN are:

           WBK@CCN or KEHL@CCN      (the Director)

           RIB@CCN or BELL@CCN      (Supervisor Of User Relations)

           BBN@CCN or NOBLE@CCN     (Barbara Noble, User Consultant)

This fine service is brought to you by your friendly neighborhood Tenex.

    On the other hand, the Tenex READMAIL command is a little too
simple.  After giving you a message, it should ask you whether you want
to delete, keep, forward, and/or repeat the message.

    Dave Crocker of NMC has suggested an extension to the MAIL and MLFL
(Mail File) commands in CCN's FTP to allow CCN to serve as a mail
delivery station for NMC as well as CCN.  This extension is intended to
be a trivial subset of the full-blown mail protocol which is currently
being developed by Jim White et al.  It is a simple means to allow CCN's
high-speed printers to be used conveniently for receiving and

disseminating Network documentation as well as messages.  It is based
upon extensions of the pathname/user name fields in the MLFL/MAIL
commands, respectively.  The proposed syntax is as follows:

                           __                   __
                          |                       |
                          | ;D[DOCUMENT]          |
                          | ;M[MESSAGE]           |
               <userid>   | ;C[COPIES]= <integer> |
                          | ;BIN= <integer>       |
                          |__                   __|

The semantics would be:

    (1) <userid>  will normally be a valid TSO userid; this will be used
                  to determine a charge number to account for the
                  printing. If <userid> is _not_ recognized, the rest of
                  the parameters will be ignored, but the mail will
                  still be accepted. The result will be to print one
                  copy immediately in upper case and send it to Bin
                  9906, charging it to an overhead account.

    (2) MESSAGE   means print a copy immediately using the normal
                  upper-case-only train. This is the default.

    (3) DOCUMENT  means enqueue the text for overnight printing with an
                  upper/lower case print train.  A message indicating
                  receipt (and perhaps the first block) will also be
                  printed immediately in upper case and distributed.

    (4) COPIES    makes multiple copies. [This facility will not be
                  available immediately].

    (5) BIN       specifies CCN bin to receive output. Default will be
                  9906 (ARPA mail bin).

    Each incoming message will be time-and-date-stamped.  The time/date
will appear on the first page of the message (on a separate page in the
case of upper/lowercase), in the 256 acknowledgment message from FTP,
and on our system log file.  This time/date stamp may be useful for
users to keep tabs on their documents, and to allow us to track down
missing messages. The semicolon and equal sign delimiters of this syntax
are acceptable in the "user" parameter to SNDMSG.

    This extended MAIL syntax will be implemented by June 1.

RTB/gjm

       [ This RFC was put into machine readable form for entry ]
       [ into the online RFC archives by Alex McKenzie with    ]
       [ support from GTE, formerly BBN Corp.             9/99 ]

 

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