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The following is an archive of a post made to our 'vox-tech mailing list' by one of its subscribers.

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Re: [vox-tech] quick smtp question
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Re: [vox-tech] quick smtp question

This is from RFC 821 (base SMTP RFC).



         Without some provision for data transparency the character
         sequence "<CRLF>.<CRLF>" ends the mail text and cannot be sent
         by the user.  In general, users are not aware of such
         "forbidden" sequences.  To allow all user composed text to be
         transmitted transparently the following procedures are used.

            1. Before sending a line of mail text the sender-SMTP checks
            the first character of the line.  If it is a period, one
            additional period is inserted at the beginning of the line.

            2. When a line of mail text is received by the receiver-SMTP
            it checks the line.  If the line is composed of a single
            period it is the end of mail.  If the first character is a
            period and there are other characters on the line, the first
            character is deleted.

         The mail data may contain any of the 128 ASCII characters.  All
         characters are to be delivered to the recipient's mailbox
         including format effectors and other control characters.  If
         the transmission channel provides an 8-bit byte (octets) data
         stream, the 7-bit ASCII codes are transmitted right justified
         in the octets with the high order bits cleared to zero.

            In some systems it may be necessary to transform the data as
            it is received and stored.  This may be necessary for hosts
            that use a different character set than ASCII as their local
            character set, or that store data in records rather than
            strings.  If such transforms are necessary, they must be
            reversible -- especially if such transforms are applied to
            mail being relayed.

On Tue, Oct 23, 2001 at 09:08:39AM -0700, Peter Jay Salzman wrote:
> always wanted to know this little tidbit:
> when sending email, what happens when you send a period on a line all by
> itself?  like this:
> .
> what does the MTA do to make sure the email doesn't end prematurely?
> pete
> -- 
> "You may not use the Software in connection with any site that disparages
> Microsoft, MSN, MSNBC, Expedia, or their products or services ..."
>                     -- Clause from license for FrontPage 2002

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