Browse Prior Art Database

Network News Transfer Protocol (RFC0977)

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000004975D
Original Publication Date: 1986-Feb-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2001-Jul-13
Document File: 28 page(s) / 54K

Publishing Venue

Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)

Related People

B. Kantor: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

For many years, the ARPA-Internet community has supported the distribution of bulletins, information, and data in a timely fashion to thousands of participants. We collectively refer to such items of information as "news". Such news provides for the rapid dissemination of items of interest such as software bug fixes, new product reviews, technical tips, and programming pointers, as well as rapid-fire discussions of matters of concern to the working computer professional. News is very popular among its readers.

This text was extracted from a ASCII document.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 6% of the total text.

Network Working Group Brian Kantor (U.C. San Diego) Request for Comments: 977 Phil Lapsley (U.C. Berkeley)

February 1986

Network News Transfer Protocol

A Proposed Standard for the Stream-Based

Transmission of News

Status of This Memo

NNTP specifies a protocol for the distribution, inquiry, retrieval, and posting of news articles using a reliable stream-based transmission of news among the ARPA-Internet community. NNTP is designed so that news articles are stored in a central database allowing a subscriber to select only those items he wishes to read. Indexing, cross-referencing, and expiration of aged messages are also provided. This RFC suggests a proposed protocol for the ARPA-Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions for improvements. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.

1. Introduction

For many years, the ARPA-Internet community has supported the distribution of bulletins, information, and data in a timely fashion to thousands of participants. We collectively refer to such items of information as "news". Such news provides for the rapid dissemination of items of interest such as software bug fixes, new product reviews, technical tips, and programming pointers, as well as rapid-fire discussions of matters of concern to the working computer professional. News is very popular among its readers.

There are popularly two methods of distributing such news: the Internet method of direct mailing, and the USENET news system.

1.1. Internet Mailing Lists

The Internet community distributes news by the use of mailing lists. These are lists of subscriber's mailbox addresses and remailing sublists of all intended recipients. These mailing lists operate by remailing a copy of the information to be distributed to each subscriber on the mailing list. Such remailing is inefficient when a mailing list grows beyond a dozen or so people, since sending a separate copy to each of the subscribers occupies large quantities of network bandwidth, CPU resources, and significant amounts of disk storage at the destination host. There is also a significant problem in maintenance of the list itself: as subscribers move from one job to another; as new subscribers join and old ones leave; and as hosts come in and out of service.

Kantor Lapsley [Page 1]

RFC 977 February 1986 Network News Transfer Protocol

1.2. The USENET News System

Clearly, a worthwhile reduction of the amount of these resources used can be achieved if articles are stored in a central database on the receiving host instead of in each subscriber's mailbox. The USENET news system provides a method of doing just this. There is a central repository of the news articles in one place (customarily a spool directory of some sort), and a set of programs that allow a subscriber to select those items he wishes to read. Indexing, cross-referencing, and expiration of aged mes...