Re: Balsa + libESMTP patch

On Wed,  2 May 11:01 Carlos Morgado wrote:

| > | The patch doesn't add a --with-libesmtp, does it ? It should :)
| > 
| > I don't see why.  The libESMTP patch is a *replacement* for the
| > existing code.  Balsa's existing SMTP client is buggy and does
| > not comply with RFC 821.  Piping messages into sendmail is
| > inflexible and requires a complex MTA installation just to
| > post mail, especially on a workstation which has no need for
| > an MTA.
| > 
| Otoh it works for most people (doesn't it? people ?) and doesn't
| require 
| extra stuff.

The SMTP client in Balsa is buggy to the extent its unusable except
in a small set of circumstances.  Aside from that it cannot easily
be extended to permit some of the more useful SMTP extensions.

The traditional Un*x method of using sendmail is unnecessary and
inflexible.  Unnecessary because mail might as well be posted using
SMTP (a move which avoids the need to install sendmail on a
workstation).  Inflexible for many reasons derived from the fact that
very fine grained control over protocol options and recipient options
and status etc is possible at the protocol level compared to sendmail's
command line.

So long as Balsa is stuck with posting messages via its existing
SMTP client or via sendmail, it cannot move to take advantage of
the additional flexibility available in SMTP extensions.

| If you look closely gss and ssl and gtkhtml are compile 
| time options.

I'm aware of that!

| that's cause ssl doesn't work now, gtkthml is buggy and 
| gss isn't widely deployed. this is the case with libesmtp.

Well, libESMTP can be downloaded.  Just regard it as a prerequisite.

SMTP is widely deployed even though libESMTP is not.  If lack of
deployment of new software was an argument against using it, nothing
new would ever get developed.

Or are you saying libESMTP doesn't work or is buggy?  If so I'd like
the bug reports, please.  A significant amount of effort has gone
into the developemnt of libESMTP over the last 5 months or so.  If
there are problems with the library, I really need to know about it.

| mind i'd 
| rather have spell checking as a compile option too.
| I'd rather see a transition period with a --with option until people
| catch on with it.

Well libESMTP installs much more easily than pspell and requires
no configuration after installation.

| (btw, the configure stuff in your patch is broken, doesn't stop 
| when it doesn't find libesmtp - well, at least didn't work for me)

My mistake.  I had fixed this but forgot to fix it on the system I
generated the patch on.  I'll fix this and post the corrected patch
later on today.

| > I have been using the patched Balsa for upwards of two months now
| > in various configurations with many SMTP servers with no problems.
| > I decided it was time the wider community had the opportunity to
| > try it.  Bottom line is if you don't like the patch, don't apply it.
| > 
| oh. i assumed you wanted the patch merged on the cvs. sorry then.
| maybe a temporary cvs branch would be nice for testing ? pawel ?

No, I want it in CVS.  I figured that with the patch folks could test
things in a wider set of circumstances than I can try for myself.

| i am yet to see a mta listening on port 587. setting the default to 
| something that doesn't work in the default case is not very good.

We have to agree to disagree on this one.  The justification in
RFC 2476 for the use of port 587 for mail submission is good enough
for me.

Brian Stafford

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