sendmail.net: Email and the IETF: Notes from Adelaide

“The 47th meeting of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)
took place recently in Adelaide, Australia. Greg Shapiro,
Sendmail’s lead engineer, was in attendance and participated in
discussions covering several crucial topics for Internet mail. He
shared his thoughts on what was discussed in three key areas
for sendmail: message tracking, internationalizing DNS, and
wireless access.

“Of the issues discussed in the applications area, message
tracking was at the top of Shapiro’s list. Message tracking would
extend ESMTP to allow users of mail systems (and notably enterprise
mail systems) to discover the path a particular message has taken
through a messaging system and the current routing status of that
message. There were two sessions devoted to message tracking at the
IETF meeting in Adelaide: the design BOF (“just a group of us on
the staircase”) and the actual workgroup meeting, where it was
decided to break out the tracking protocol from SMTP

“Internationalization of the domain name system is currently a
hot issue within the IETF. Key areas of discussion (dare we say
disagreement?) focus on encoding, and on how much the eventual
changes will interfere with existing applications that use the DNS
– sendmail included.”

“US residents tend toward complacency on this topic – from their
perspective, what could be wrong?…”