Use of FTP by the NIC Journal (RFC0479)
Original Publication Date: 1973-Mar-08
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2000-Sep-13
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
At the Network Mail Meeting (see -- 14317,) the NIC outlined it's requirements for implementing FTP Journal delivery and submission.
Network Working Group James E. White (JEW)
Request for Comments: 479 SRI-ARC
NIC: 14948 March 8, 1973
Use of FTP by the NIC Journal
At the Network Mail Meeting (see -- 14317,) the NIC outlined it's
requirements for implementing FTP Journal delivery and submission.
It had always been our thinking that those two services should rely
upon the File Transfer Protocol's MLFL command for their
Prior to the meeting, we had envisioned that, in the case of
submission, for example, the user would embed what parameters the NIC
required (e.g., an indication that this piece of mail was to be
journalized, a list of NIC idents, etc.) in the USERNAME field of the
MLFL command, in a way that was transparent to his FTP user process,
and that SRI-ARC's FTP server process would parse the 'user name' for
the parameters and internally invoke the Journal System with them and
the text of the mail as arguments.
Our goal (which this scheme would have satisfied) was to provide
the desired services while confining software changes to our own
system and, in particular, to avoid requiring that user FTP
processes or the File Transfer Protocol itself be modified.
It was, however, the consensus of those present at the meeting that
it was preferable to modify FTP in such a way that all required
parameters could be explicitly declared, rather than require that
they be hidden within what purported to be simply a user name.
The intent of this RFC is to list what we (the NIC) believe were the
new FTP commands it was agreed should be defined in support of mail
submission and delivery. Actually, we've done some massaging after
thinking about the issues for awhile, and so this is really a
description of what we'd like to see included in the File Transfer
Protocol (following the lines of thought which developed at the
meeting), along with a short description of how the NIC would use
Some of the commands currently make sense only if issued TO the NIC's
FTP server process (as opposed to anybody else's) and others only if
issued BY the NIC's FTP user process (as opposed to anybody else's).
This is true because currently only the NIC plans to offer mail
forwarding and recording (i.e., the Journal System) as a service.
However, other hosts may in the future desire to implement a similar
service, at which time these special commands will have wider use.
Conceptually, all of these commands are sub-commands of a new MAIL
command, but the intent for the moment is not to define their
position within the FTP dialogue nor their syntax, but simply to
describe them conceptually. Details of syntax and use are left to
the FTP Interest Group which meets 16-MAR-73 in Boston (see --
The new sub-commands are described below. Bracketed fields are