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INTERNET-DRAFT                                               B. Hernacki
Expires: Jan 15, 1998                    Netscape Communications, Inc.
<draft-hernacki-nntplist-02.txt>                        Jul 15, 1997

                          NNTP LIST Additions

1.  Status of this Memo

This document is an Internet-Draft.  Internet-Drafts are  working  docu-
ments  of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), its areas, and its
working groups.  Note that other  groups  may  also  distribute  working
documents as Internet-Drafts.

Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum  of  six  months
and  may  be  updated,  replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet- Drafts as reference material
or to cite them other than as ``work in progress.''

To learn the current status of  any  Internet-Draft,  please  check  the
``1id-abstracts.txt''  listing  contained in the Internet- Drafts Shadow
Directories on ds.internic.net (US East Coast), nic.nordu.net  (Europe),
ftp.isi.edu (US West Coast), or munnari.oz.au (Pacific Rim).

2.  Abstract

This document describes a set of enhancements to the Network News  Tran-
sport  Protocol [NNTP-977] that allows extended server specific informa-
tion to be obtained by the client.

These enhancements will be made as new arguments to  the  existing  LIST
verb described in the NNTP protocol [NNTP-977].

The availability of the extensions described here will be advertised  by
the  server  using  the extension negotiation-mechanism described in the
new NNTP protocol specification currently being developed [NNTP-NEW].

Hernacki                                                        [Page 1]

INTERNET-DRAFT                                              Jul 15, 1997

3.  Introduction

The LIST MOTD command is sent from the client to obtain  a  "message  of
the  day".  The  server  returns a body of text to the client, which the
client may then display in a manner it deems appropriate.

The LIST SUBSCRIPTIONS command is sent from the client to obtain a  list
of  default  newsgroups  specific  to that server. This command is to be
used in place of  hard-coding  client  software  to  look  for  specific
default newsgroups when first connecting to the server.

The LIST PRETTYNAMES command is sent from the client to obtain a list of
RFC1036  compliant  [NNTP-1036]  newsgroup  names  and the corresponding
prettyname. A prettyname is simply  a  localized  "more  readable"  name
which  does not have the naming restrictions RFC1036 defines. The client
may then use these names to provide an easier to read interface  to  the
newsgroups  while  still maintaining 1036-compliant names for compatible
transport with other servers.

The LIST XACTIVE command is sent from the client to  obtian  a  list  of
newsgroups,  their  article  number range and any associated flags. This
extended command is intended to work like LIST  (ACTIVE)  in  [NNTP-977]
but to allow a wider range of flags to be associated with each newsgroup
without breaking client which rely on LIST ACTIVE's current behavior.

3.1.  Use of NNTP Extension Mechanism

The NNTP extension mechanism described in [NNTP-NEW] allows a server  to
describe  its  capabilities.   The  following  extensions  are  used  to
describe the capabilities described in this document.

3.2.  LISTMOTD Extension

The LISTMOTD extension indicates the server supports the LIST MOTD  com-

3.3.  LISTSUBSCR Extension

The LISTSUBSCR extension indicates the server  supports  the  LIST  SUB-

3.4.  LISTPNAMES Extension

The LISTPNAMES extension indicates the server supports  the  LIST  PRET-
TYNAMES command.

Hernacki                                                        [Page 2]

INTERNET-DRAFT                                              Jul 15, 1997

3.5.  The XACTIVE extensions indicates the server supports the LIST XAC-
TIVE command.

4.  Command Descriptions

4.1.  LIST MOTD command


Returns a message of the day relevant to that server.  This  information
is  intended  to provide notification and communication between the news
administrator and the news user. The data returned may be multi-line and
may  contain  whatever  data the administrator wishes to enter. The data
will be terminated by the character sequence "CRLF.CRLF".

It is up to the client to decide when and how to display  this  informa-
tion to the user. No timestamp/last-modified is provided. The client may
want to keep some state if it wishes  to  show  the  message  only  upon

4.2.  Responses

The server will return either a success  code  (215),  followed  by  the
multi-line text, terminated by the sequence "CRLF.CRLF" or indicate that
no motd is available (503).

215 message of the day follows
503 no message of the day available

4.3.  Example

S: 215 message of the day follows
S: Attention All Users,
S: This server will be down for scheduled upgrades on May 11th. It should be
S: back up by 8 am May 12th. Any questions should be emailed to news@xxx.xxx.
S: .



Returns a list of default newsgroups to which users of that  server  may
want to subscribe. This is provided as a better alternative to the prac-
tice of hard-coding default newsgroup lists into  client  software.  The
data  returned  is  one  group  per  line,  terminated  by the character

Hernacki                                                        [Page 3]

INTERNET-DRAFT                                              Jul 15, 1997

sequence "CRLF.CRLF".

4.5.  Responses

The server will return either a success  code  (215),  followed  by  the
multi-line  text,  terminated  by  the character sequence "CRLF.CRLF" or
indicate that no subscription list is available (503).

215 default newsgroups
503 no default newsgroups available

4.6.  Example

S: 215 default newsgroups
S: local.newusers
S: local.faqs
S: local.importantnews
S: .

4.7.  LIST PRETTYNAMES command


Returns a list of mappings between RFC1036 compliant newsgroup names and
more  readable synonyms, called prettynames. These mappings are intended
to allow a client interface to provide  more  readable  group  names  to
users,  which  may  be  localized  names. Data is returned one group per
line. Each line consists of the newsgroup name, a  tab,  the  prettyname
and  a linefeed ("LF"). The list is terminated by the character sequence
"CRLF.CRLF". If a group matches the pattern but does not  have  a  pret-
tyname, nothing is returned for that group.

The prettyname may contain any character except a  linefeed  ("LF").  If
localized  names require more than 8 bits per character, the strings may
be encoded as a MIME2 encoded string [MIME-2].

These prettynames may not be used for anything except display  purposes.
Prettynames  must not be recognized as valid groupnames by NNTP commands
requiring newsgroup names.

Not all groups available on the server must have a prettyname available.
If no prettyname is listed for a group which is available on the server,
the client should use the RFC1036 newsgroup  name  for  display.  If  no
wildmat  pattern is supplied then all prettynames are listed. If a wild-
mat pattern is supplied, then only those groups matching the pattern are

Hernacki                                                        [Page 4]

INTERNET-DRAFT                                              Jul 15, 1997

4.8.  Responses

The server will return either a success  code  (215),  followed  by  the
multi-line  text,  terminated  by  the character sequence "CRLF.CRLF" or
indicate that no prettynames are available (503).

215 prettynames for newsgroups
503 no prettynames for newsgroups available

4.9.  Example

S: 215 prettynames for newsgroups
S: local.newusers               Basic New User Information
S: local.faqs                   Frequently Asked Questions
S: local.importantnews  Important News
S: .

4.10.  The LIST XACTIVE command

LIST XACTIVE [wildmat]

Returns a list of valid newsgroups mathcing the  specified  pattern  (or
all  if no pattern is specified) and associated information like LIST in
[NNTP-977] except that the last column (fourth) can contain an arbitrary
set  of  flags (multiple single character flags). The [NNTP-977] verions
only allows 'y' or 'n' for this field though many  implementations  send
and  accept other characters. Clients sending LIST XACTIVE must silently
ignore any  flags  they  do  not  recognize.  The  following  flags  are
currently defined.
y               : postable newsgroup
n               : non-postable newsgroup
m               : moderated newsgroup

4.11.  Responses

The server will return either a success  code  (215),  followed  by  the
multi-line text, terminated by the character sequence "CRLF.CRLF".

215 list of newsgroups follows

5.  Security Considerations

These commands do not introduce any new  security  considerations.  LIST
PRETTYNAMES should be considered equivalent (in security considerations)
to LIST NEWSGROUPS for any access control purposes.

Hernacki                                                        [Page 5]

INTERNET-DRAFT                                              Jul 15, 1997

6.  Bibliography

     Network News Transfer Protocol.  B. Kantor, Phil  Lapsley,  Request
     for Comment (RFC) 977, February 1986.

     Standard for Interchange of USENET Messages.  M. Horton, R.  Adams,
     Request for Comment (RFC) 1036, December 1987.

     Network News Transfer Protocol.  S.  Barber  INTERNET  DRAFT,  Sep-
     tember 1996.

     Moore, K., MIME (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions)  Part  Two:
     Message  Header Extensions for Non-ASCII Text, RFC 1522, University
     of Tennessee, September 1993.

7.  Author's Address

   Brian Hernacki
   Netscape Communications, Inc.
   501 E. Middlefield Road
   Mountain View, CA  94043

   Phone: +1 415-937-6738
   Email: bhern@netscape.com

                  This Internet Draft expires  Jan 15, 1998.

Hernacki                                                        [Page 6]

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