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Versions: 00 01 02 03 RFC 3030

     Internet Draft                                       Greg Vaudreuil
     Expires in six months                           Lucent Technologies
                                                        October 19, 2000
  
  
                            SMTP Service Extensions
                           for Transmission of Large
                            and Binary MIME Messages
  
                     <draft-vaudreuil-esmtp-binary2-03.txt
  
  
  
  Status of this Memo
  
     This document is an Internet-Draft and is in full conformance with all
     provisions of Section 10 of RFC 2026.
  
     This document is an Internet Draft.  Internet Drafts are working
     documents 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 valid for a maximum of six months and may be
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     To learn the current status of any Internet-Draft, please check the
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     ftp.isi.edu (US West Coast).
  
  
  
  Copyright Notice
  
     Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2000).  All Rights Reserved.
  
     This Internet-Draft is in conformance with Section 10 of RFC 2026.
  
  Abstract
  
     This memo defines two extensions to the SMTP service.  The first
     extension enables a SMTP client and server to negotiate the use of an
     alternative to the DATA command, called "BDAT", for efficiently
     sending large MIME messages.  The second extension takes advantage of
     the BDAT command to permit the negotiated sending of MIME messages
     that employ the binary transfer encoding. This document is intended to
     update and obsolete RFC1830.


  
  
     Internet Draft            Binary ESMTP             October 19, 2000
  
  
  Working Group Summary
  
     This protocol is not the product of an IETF working group, however the
     specification resulted from discussions within the ESMTP working
     group.  The resulting protocol documented in RFC1830 was classified as
     experimental at that time due to questions about the robustness of the
     Binary Content-Transfer-Encoding deployed in then existent MIME
     implementations.  As MIME has matured and other uses of the Binary
     Content-Transfer-Encoding have been deployed, these concerns have been
     allayed.  With this document, Binary ESMTP is expected to become
     standards-track.
  
  Document Conventions
  
     The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
     "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED",  "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this
     document are to be interpreted as described in RFC-2119 [RFC2119].
  
  Table of Contents
  
  1.   OVERVIEW ..........................................................2
  2.   FRAMEWORK FOR THE LARGE MESSAGE EXTENSIONS ........................3
  3.   FRAMEWORK FOR THE BINARY SERVICE EXTENSION ........................6
  4.   EXAMPLES ..........................................................8
    4.1  Simple Chunking .................................................8
    4.2  Pipelining BINARYMIME ...........................................9
  5.   SECURITY CONSIDERATIONS ..........................................10
  6.   REFERENCES .......................................................10
  7.   COPYRIGHT NOTICE .................................................10
  8.   AUTHOR'S ADDRESS .................................................11
  9.   APPENDIX A - CHANGES FROM RFC1830 ................................12
  
  
  1. Overview
  
     The MIME extensions to the Internet message format provides for the
     transmission of many kinds of data that were previously unsupported in
     Internet mail.  Anticipating the need to transport the new media more
     efficiently, the SMTP protocol has been extended to provide transport
     for new message types.  RFC 1652 defines one such extension for the
     transmission of unencoded 8-bit MIME messages [8BIT].  This service
     extension permits the receiver SMTP to declare support for 8-bit body
     parts and the sender to request 8-bit transmission of a particular
     message.
  
     One expected result of the use of MIME is that the Internet mail
     system will be expected to carry very large mail messages.  In such
     transactions, there is a performance-based desire to eliminate the
     requirement that the message be scanned for "CR LF . CR LF" sequences
     upon sending and receiving to detect the end of message.
  
     Independent of the need to send large messages, Internet mail is
     increasingly multimedia.  There is a need to avoid the overhead of
     base64 and quoted-printable encoding of binary objects sent using the
  
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     MIME message format over SMTP between hosts that support binary
     message processing.
  
     This memo uses the mechanism defined in [ESMTP] to define two
     extensions to the SMTP service whereby an SMTP server ("receiver-
     SMTP") may declare support for the message chunking transmission mode
     and support for the receiption of Binary messages, which the SMTP
     client ("sender-SMTP") is then free to use.
  
  2. Framework for the Large Message Extensions
  
     The following service extension is hereby defined:
  
     1) The name of the data chunking service extension is "CHUNKING".
  
     2) The EHLO keyword value associated with this extension is
     "CHUNKING".
  
     3) A new SMTP verb, BDAT, is defined as an alternative to the "DATA"
     command of [RFC821]. The BDAT verb takes two arguments.  The first
     argument indicates the length, in octets, of the binary data chunk.
     The second optional argument indicates that the data chunk is the
     last.
  
        bdat-cmd   ::= "BDAT" SP chunk-size [ SP end-marker ] CR LF
        chunk-size ::= 1*DIGIT
        end-marker ::= "LAST"
  
     4) This extension may be used for SMTP message submission. [Submit]
  
     5) Servers that offer the BDAT extension MUST continue to support the
     regular SMTP DATA command. Clients are free to use DATA to transfer
     appropriately encoded to servers that support the CHUNKING extension
     if they wish to do so.
  
     The CHUNKING service extension enables the use of the BDAT alternative
     to the DATA command.  This extension can be used for any message,
     whether 7-bit, 8BITMIME or BINARYMIME.
  
     When a sender-SMTP wishes to send (using the MAIL command) a large
     message using the CHUNKING extension, it first issues the EHLO command
     to the receiver-SMTP.  If the receiver-SMTP responds with code 250 to
     the EHLO command and the response includes the EHLO keyword value
     CHUNKING, then the receiver-SMTP is indicating that it supports the
     BDAT command and will accept the sending of messages in chunks.
  
     After all MAIL and RCPT responses are collected and processed, the
     message is sent using a series of BDAT commands.  The BDAT command
     takes one required argument, the exact length of the data segment in
     octets.  The message data is sent immediately after the trailing <CR>
     <LF> of the BDAT command line.  Once the receiver-SMTP receives the
     specified number of octets, it will return a 250 reply code.
  
  
  
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     The optional LAST parameter on the BDAT command indicates that this is
     the last chunk of message data to be sent.  The last BDAT command MAY
     have a byte-count of zero indicating there is no additional data to be
     sent. Any BDAT command sent after the BDAT LAST is illegal and MUST be
     replied to with a 503 "Bad sequence of commands" reply code. The state
     resulting from this error is indeterminate.  A RSET command MUST be
     sent to clear the transaction before continuing.
  
     A 250 response MUST be sent to each successful BDAT data block within
     a mail transaction.  If a failure occurs after a BDAT command is
     received, the receiver-SMTP MUST accept and discard the associated
     message data before sending the appropriate 5XX or 4XX code.  If a 5XX
     or 4XX code is received by the sender-SMTP in response to a BDAT
     chunk, the transaction should be considered failed and the sender-SMTP
     MUST NOT send any additional BDAT segments. If the receiver-SMTP has
     declared support for command pipelining [PIPE], the receiver SMTP MUST
     be prepared to accept and discard additional BDAT chunks already in
     the pipeline after the failed BDAT.
  
          Note: An error on the receiver-SMTP such as disk full or imminent
          shutdown can only be reported after the BDAT segment has been
          received.  It is therefore important to choose a reasonable chunk
          size given the expected end-to-end bandwidth.
  
          Note:  Because the receiver-SMTP does not acknowledge the BDAT
          command before the message data is sent, it is important to send
          the BDAT only to systems that have declared their capability to
          accept BDAT commands. Illegally sending a BDAT command and
          associated message data to a non-CHUNKING capable system will
          result in the receiver-SMTP parsing the associated message data
          as if it were a potentially very long, ESMTP command line
          containing binary data.
  
     The resulting state from a failed BDAT command is indeterminate.  A
     RSET command MUST be issued to clear the transaction before additional
     commands may be sent. The RSET command, when issued after the first
     BDAT and before the BDAT LAST, clears all segments sent during that
     transaction and resets the session.
  
     DATA and BDAT commands cannot be used in the same transaction.  If a
     DATA statement is issued after a BDAT for the current transaction, a
     503 "Bad sequence of commands" MUST be issued.  The state resulting
     from this error is indeterminate.  A RSET command MUST be sent to
     clear the transaction before continuing.  There is no prohibition on
     using DATA and BDAT in the same session, so long as they are not mixed
     in the same transaction.
  
     The local storage size of a message may not accurately reflect the
     actual size of the message sent due to local storage conventions.  In
     particular, text messages sent with the BDAT command MUST be sent in
     the canonical MIME format with lines delimited with a <CR><LF>.  It
     may not be possible to convert the entire message to the canonical
     format at once. CHUNKING provides a mechanism to convert the message
  
  
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     to canonical form, accurately count the bytes, and send the message a
     single chunk at a time.
  
          Note: Correct byte counting is essential.  If the sender-SMTP
          indicates a chunk-size larger than the actual chunk-size, the
          receiver-SMTP will continue to wait for the remainder of the
          data or when using streaming, will read the subsequent command
          as additional message data.  In the case where a portion of the
          previous command was read as data, the parser will return a
          syntax error when the incomplete command is read.
  
          If the sender-SMTP indicates a chunk-size smaller than the
          actual chunk-size, the receiver-SMTP will interpret the
          remainder of the message data as invalid commands.  Note that
          the remainder of the message data may be binary and as such
          lexicographical parsers MUST be prepared to receive, process,
          and reject lines of arbitrary octets.
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
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     Internet Draft            Binary ESMTP             October 19, 2000
  
  
  3. Framework for the Binary Service Extension
  
     The following service extension is hereby defined:
  
     1) The name of the binary service extension is "BINARYMIME".
  
     2) The EHLO keyword value associated with this extension is
     "BINARYMIME".
  
     3) The BINARYMIME service extension can only be used with the
     "CHUNKING" service extension.
  
     4) No parameter is used with the BINARYMIME keyword.
  
     5) [8BIT] defines the BODY parameter for the MAIL command.  This
     extension defines an additional value for the BODY parameter,
     "BINARYMIME". The value "BINARYMIME" associated with this parameter
     indicates that this message is a Binary MIME message (in strict
     compliance with [MIME]) with arbitrary octet content being sent. The
     revised syntax of the value is as follows, using the ABNF notation of
     [RFC822]:
  
                 body-value ::= "7BIT" / "8BITMIME" / "BINARYMIME"
  
     6) No new verbs are defined for the BINARYMIME extension.
  
     7) This extension may be used for SMTP message submission. [Submit]
  
     8) The maximum length of a MAIL FROM command line is increased by 16
     characters by the possible addition of the BODY=BINARYMIME keyword and
     value;.
  
     A sender-SMTP may request that a binary MIME message be sent without
     transport encoding by sending a BODY parameter with a value of
     "BINARYMIME" with the MAIL command.  When the receiver-SMTP accepts a
     MAIL command with the BINARYMIME body-value, it agrees to preserve all
     bits in each octet passed using the BDAT command. Once a receiver-SMTP
     supporting the BINARYMIME service extension accepts a message
     containing binary material, the receiver-SMTP MUST deliver or relay
     the message in such a way as to preserve all bits in each octet.
  
     BINARYMIME cannot be used with the DATA command.  If a DATA command is
     issued after a MAIL command containing the body-value of "BINARYMIME",
     a 503 "Bad sequence of commands" response MUST be sent.  The resulting
     state from this error condition is indeterminate and the transaction
     MUST be reset with the RSET command.
  
     It is especially important when using BINARYMIME to ensure that the
     MIME message itself is properly formed.  In particular, it is
     essential that text be canonically encoded with each line properly
     terminated with <CR><LF>.  Any transformation of text into non-
     canonical MIME to observe local storage conventions MUST be reversed
     before sending as BINARYMIME.  Some line-oriented shortcuts will break
     if used with BINARYMIME. A sender-SMTP MUST use the canonical encoding
  
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     for a given MIME content-type.  In particular, text/* MUST be sent
     with <CR><LF> terminated lines.
  
     Note: Although CR and LF do not necessarily represent ends of text
     lines in BDAT chunks and use of the binary transfer encoding is
     allowed, the RFC 2781 prohibition against using a UTF-16 charset
     within the text top-level media type remains.
  
     The syntax of the extended MAIL command is identical to the MAIL
     command in [RFC821], except that a BODY=BINARYMIME parameter and value
     MUST be added. The complete syntax of this extended command is defined
     in [ESMTP].
  
     If a receiver-SMTP does not indicate support the BINARYMIME message
     format then the sender-SMTP MUST NOT, under any circumstances, send
     binary data.
  
     If the receiver-SMTP does not support BINARYMIME and the message to be
     sent is a MIME object with a binary encoding, a sender-SMTP has three
     options with which to forward the message. First, if the receiver-SMTP
     supports the 8bit-MIMEtransport extension [8bit] and the content is
     amenable to being encoded in 8bit, the sender-SMTP may implement a
     gateway transformation to convert the message into valid 8bit-encoded
     MIME. Second, it may implement a gateway transformation to convert the
     message into valid 7bit-encoded MIME. Third, it may treat this as a
     permanent error and handle it in the usual manner for delivery
     failures. The specifics of MIME content-transfer-encodings, including
     transformations from Binary MIME to 8bit or 7bit MIME are not
     described by this RFC; the conversion is nevertheless constrained in
     the following ways:
  
          1. The conversion MUST cause no loss of information;  MIME
     transport encodings MUST be employed as needed to insure this is the
     case.
  
          2. The resulting message MUST be valid 7bit or 8bit MIME.  In
     particular, the transformation MUST NOT result in nested Base-64 or
     Quoted-Printable content-transfer-encodings.
  
     Note that at the time of this writing there are no mechanisms for
     converting a binary MIME object into an 8-bit MIME object. Such a
     transformation will require the specification of a new MIME content-
     transfer-encoding.
  
     If the MIME message contains a "Binary" content-transfer-encoding and
     the BODY parameter does not indicate BINARYMIME, the message MUST be
     accepted.  The message SHOULD be returned to the sender with an
     appropriate DSN.  The message contents MAY be returned to the sender
     if the offending content can be mangled into a legal DSN structure.
     "Fixing" and forwarding the offending content is beyond the scope of
     this document.
  
  
  
  
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  4. Examples
  
  4.1 Simple Chunking
  
     The following simple dialogue illustrates the use of the large message
     extension to send a short pseudo-RFC822 message to one recipient using
     the CHUNKING extension:
  
     R: <wait for connection on TCP port 25>
     S: <open connection to server>
     R: 220 cnri.reston.va.us SMTP service ready
     S: EHLO ymir.claremont.edu
     R: 250-cnri.reston.va.us says hello
     R: 250 CHUNKING
     S: MAIL FROM:<Sam@Random.com>
     R: 250 <Sam@Random.com> Sender ok
     S: RCPT TO:<Susan@Random.com>
     R: 250 <Susan@random.com> Recipient ok
     S: BDAT 86 LAST
     S: To: Susan@random.com<CR><LF>
     S: From: Sam@random.com<CR><LF>
     S: Subject: This is a bodyless test message<CR><LF>
     R: 250 Message OK, 86 octets received
     S: QUIT
     R: 221 Goodbye
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
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  4.2 Pipelining BINARYMIME
  
     The following dialogue illustrates the use of the large message
     extension to send a BINARYMIME object to two recipients using the
     CHUNKING and PIPELINING extensions:
  
     R: <wait for connection on TCP port
     S: <open connection to server>
     R: 220 cnri.reston.va.us SMTP service ready
     S: EHLO ymir.claremont.edu
     R: 250-cnri.reston.va.us says hello
     R: 250-PIPELINING
     R: 250-BINARYMIME
     R: 250 CHUNKING
     S: MAIL FROM:<ned@ymir.claremont.edu> BODY=BINARYMIME
     S: RCPT TO:<gvaudre@cnri.reston.va.us>
     S: RCPT TO:<jstewart@cnri.reston.va.us>
     R: 250 <ned@ymir.claremont.edu>... Sender and BINARYMIME ok
     R: 250 <gvaudre@cnri.reston.va.us>... Recipient ok
     R: 250 <jstewart@cnri.reston.va.us>... Recipient ok
     S: BDAT 100000
     S: (First 10000 octets of canonical MIME message data)
     S: BDAT 324
     S: (Remaining 324 octets of canonical MIME message data)
     S: BDAT 0 LAST
     R: 250 100000 octets received
     R: 250 324 octets received
     R: 250 Message OK, 100324 octets received
     S: QUIT
     R: 221 Goodbye
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
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  5. Security Considerations
  
     This extension is not known to present any additional security issues
     not already endemic to electronic mail and present in fully conforming
     implementations of [RFC821], or otherwise made possible by [MIME].
  
  6. References
  
     [BINARY] Vaudreuil, G, " SMTP Service Extensions for Transmission of
     Large and Binary MIME Messages", RFC 1830, August 1995.
  
     [RFC821] Postel, J., "Simple Mail Transfer Protocol", STD 10, RFC 821,
     USC/Information Sciences Institute, August 1982.
  
     [RFC822] Crocker, D., "Standard for the Format of ARPA Internet Text
     Messages", STD 11, RFC 822, UDEL, August 1982.
  
     [MIME] N. Borenstein, and N. Freed, "Multipurpose Internet Mail
     Extensions (MIME) Part One: Format of Internet Message Bodies", RFC
     2045, Bellcore, Innosoft, November 1996.
  
     [SUBMIT] R. Gellens, and J. Klensin, "Message Submission", RFC 2476,
     Qualcomm, MCI, December 1998.
  
     [ESMTP] Klensin, J., WG Chair, Freed, N., Editor, Rose, M., Stefferud,
     E., and D. Crocker, "SMTP Service Extensions" RFC 1869, United Nations
     University, Innosoft International, Inc., Dover Beach Consulting,
     Inc., Network Management Associates, Inc., The Branch Office, November
     1995.
  
     [8BIT] Klensin, J., WG Chair, Freed, N., Editor, Rose, M., Stefferud,
     E., and D. Crocker, "SMTP Service Extension for 8bit-MIMEtransport"
     RFC 1652, United Nations University, Innosoft International, Inc.,
     Dover Beach Consulting, Inc., Network Management Associates, Inc., The
     Branch Office, July 1994.
  
     [PIPE] Freed, N., "SMTP Service Extensions for Command Pipelining",
     RFC 2920, Innosoft, September 2000.
  
     [RFC2119] Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
     Requirement Levels", RFC 2119, Harvard, March 1997.
  
  
  
  7. Copyright Notice
  
     "Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2000). All Rights Reserved.
  
     This document and translations of it may be copied and furnished to
     others, and derivative works that comment on or otherwise explain it
     or assist in its implementation may be prepared, copied, published and
     distributed, in whole or in part, without restriction of any kind,
     provided that the above copyright notice and this paragraph are
     included on all such copies and derivative works.  However, this
  
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     document itself may not be modified in any way, such as by removing
     the copyright notice or references to the Internet Society or other
     Internet organizations, except as needed for the  purpose of
     developing Internet standards in which case the procedures for
     copyrights defined in the Internet Standards process MUST be followed,
     or as required to translate it into languages other than English.
  
     The limited permissions granted above are perpetual and will not be
     revoked by the Internet Society or its successors or assigns.
  
     This document and the information contained herein is provided on an
     "AS IS" basis and THE INTERNET SOCIETY AND THE INTERNET ENGINEERING
     TASK FORCE DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT
     NOT LIMITED TO ANY WARRANTY THAT THE USE OF THE INFORMATION HEREIN
     WILL NOT INFRINGE ANY RIGHTS OR ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF
     MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE."
  
  8. Author's Address
  
     Gregory M. Vaudreuil
     Lucent Technologies
     17080 Dallas Parkway
     Dallas, TX 75248-1905
     Voice/Fax: +1-972-733-2722
     GregV@ieee.org
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
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  9. Appendix A - Changes from RFC1830
  
     Numerous editorial changes including required intellectual property
     boilerplate and revised authors contact information
  
     Corrected the simple chunking example to use the correct number of
     bytes.  Updated the pipelining example to illustrate use of the BDAT 0
     LAST construct.
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
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