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Re: EMAIL != FTP
From: Mitch Halmu <mitch () netside net>
Date: Sat, 26 May 2001 10:48:48 -0400 (EDT)



On Sat, 26 May 2001 Valdis.Kletnieks () vt edu wrote:

On Fri, 25 May 2001 18:12:30 EDT, Steve Sobol said:
Perhaps there is no inherent difference in throughput, but the files are
necessarily larger when sent through e-mail, as they must be base64
encoded.

There's no *inherent* reason they *must* be base64 encoded.  Please note
that all the way back in RFC1341, in addition to a CTE of 'base64', there's
the '8bit' and 'binary' CTEs.  Sendmail started having sane support of '8bit'
way back in 8.7, in 1995.  RFC3030 defines the BDAT extension for SMTP.

Now, the major real-life reason why encoding is needed is because
Sendmail 8.12 still doesn't have BDAT support.  If there's sufficient
real-world demand, it's probably implementable fairly easily (a quick
readig of RFC3030 and the Sendmail 8.12 source doesn't pop out any
astounding show-stoppers)...

If there's a lot of demand for it, I'll see what it would take to get
it onto the Sendmail 8.13 feature request list....

Besides interoperability concerns with current software that will have
to become 'legacy', you will open the gates to any hacker and script
kiddie that can now mail you their favorite virus, trojan or worm just
as is was compiled. It's bad enough that unprintable characters and
buffer overflows in the header must be neutered. Scary stuff that you
haven't even thought of could happen with 8 bit message bodies...

--Mitch
NetSide


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