The application/mbox Media Type (RFC4155)
Original Publication Date: 2005-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Sep-08
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
This memo requests that the application/mbox media type be authorized for allocation by the IESG, according to the terms specified in RFC 2048. This memo also defines a default format for the mbox database, which must be supported by all conformant implementations.
Network Working Group E.
Request for Comments: 4155 September 2005
The application/mbox Media Type
Status of This Memo
provides information for the Internet community. It does
not specify an Internet standard of any kind. Distribution of this
memo is unlimited.
Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2005).
requests that the application/mbox media type be authorized
for allocation by the IESG, according to the terms specified in RFC
2048. This memo also defines a default format for the mbox database,
which must be supported by all conformant implementations.
1. Background and Overview
operating systems have historically made widespread use of
"mbox" database files for a variety of local email purposes. In the
common case, mbox files store linear sequences of one or more
electronic mail messages, with local email clients treating the
database as a logical folder of email messages. mbox databases are
also used by a variety of other messaging tools, such as mailing list
management programs, archiving and filtering utilities, messaging
servers, and other related applications. In recent years, mbox
databases have also become common on a large number of non-UNIX
computing platforms, for similar kinds of purposes.
pervasiveness of these files has led to an increased
demand for a standardized, network-wide interchange of these files as
discrete database objects. In turn, this dictates a need for a
general media type definition for mbox files, which is the subject
and purpose of this memo.
Hall Informational [Page 1]
RFC 4155 The application/mbox Media Type September 2005
2. About the mbox Database
database format is not documented in an authoritative
specification, but instead exists as a well-known output format that
is anecdotally documented, or which is only authoritatively
documented for a specific platform or tool.
typically contain a linear sequence of electronic mail
messages. Each message begins with a separator line that identifies
the message sender, and also identifies the date and time at which
the message was received by the final recipient (either the last-hop
system in the transfer path, or the system which serves as the
recipient's mailstore). Each message is typically terminated by an
empty line. The end of the database is usually recognized by either
the absence of any additional data, or by the presence of an expli...