ietf-nntp DRAFT summary of IETF 49
Stan O. Barber
sob at verio.net
Sun Jan 7 22:04:01 PST 2001
If you were there and I missed something or misstated it, let me know soonest so
I can get this wrapped up this week.
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NNTPEXT at the 49th IETF
Notes prepared by Stan Barber, Co-Chairman
At this meeting of the working group, the main draft, draft-ietf-nntpext-base-11.txt, was the only draft
discussed in detail. Most of the discussion was centered on relatively small changes to the document. The
most significant changes were to remove PAT from the base document and to replace it with HDR. This
may not solve the problem of wildmat usage where newsgroup names are not involved. There was also an
agreement to use the BNF suggested by Clive Feather to replace the current text in section 5 (along with
small changes in other parts of the document that reference information in section 5). This will hopefully
clarify wildmat sufficiently, so there is no remaining big issues left in the draft.
The only other issue of significance discussed was the ongoing debate on the use of "UTC" or "GMT" in
the date command (and others) that clients can use to indicate to the server that the time stamp used in the
command should have no time zone offset associated with it. It has always been the case that NNTP was
never to be used as any kind of time protocol. However, it is important that the notion of time be consistent
enough that clients won't miss articles due to time stamp skewing. The group decided that the second
should be rewritten to indicate that the usage of "GMT" or "UTC" was syntactically equal and that the
intent was for the server to drop a time zone offset in doing whatever time comparison was required. In
addition, this section would carry a specific recommendation (a SHOULD) that all server operators use
NTP to synchronize their server clocks with other clocks on the Internet.
There was some discussion on specifying streaming in the draft. Some felt that it should be specified
because of issues that had come up in DRUMS. However, the group did not have a clear idea of exactly
how that should be done. There were others that felt it could be pushed off into an extension. Whatever the
case, it will be important for all commands to indicate if they can be "streamed" or not.
MODE READER was discussed, but no one in the group felt that its use should be required. A reader can
choose to use it or not. It was not clear that the group thought that the current discussion of the command
in the draft was in need of further refinement.
There was no sense within the group that further document reorganization was required at this time
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