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Re: Bug#275685: ITP: msmtp -- smtp client which can be used as a smtp plugin with mutt

On Monday 11 October 2004 21:30, Henning Makholm wrote:
> Scripsit George Danchev <danchev@spnet.net>
> > On Monday 11 October 2004 19:18, Henning Makholm wrote:
> > > The definition of mail-transport-agent is that it provides a
> > > /usr/sbin/sendmail that local software can use to submit emails for
> > > delivery to arbitrary addresses with some reasonable expectation that
> > > it will actually be delivered.
> >
> > MTA is a software talking at least one Mail Transfer Protocol (like SMTP,
> > UUCP, X.400 ...)
> That is not what mail-transport-agent means in Debian.

The policy says: "The mail spool is /var/mail and the interface to send a mail 
message is /usr/sbin/sendmail (as per the FHS)." 
But the policy does not define what an MTA is, but uses it. So I believe here 
is a good definition of what Mail transfer agents (MTAs) are:
(read it thoroughly)

All packages having 'Provides: mail-transport-agent' 
* talk at least one Mail Transport Protocol
* but not all of them are capable of routing messages to their destination
* provide  /usr/sbin/sendmail

> > Delivery agents are used to place a message into a user's mail-box.
> Yes, and nullmailer (and probably msmtp) does not do that. A
> mail-transport-agent does not need to be a delivery agent too.

I've never said that mail-transport-agent does need to be a delivery agent 

> > Such a package must talk at least one Mail Trasfer Protocol to be
> > called MTA.
> False, not for the meaning of mail-transport-agent we use in Debian.

mail-trnsport-agent is a virtual package provided by packages capable of being 
MTA. Debian policy does not define what MTA is and does need to.

# zcat virtual-package-names-list.txt.gz | grep mail-transport-agent
# mail-transport-agent    a mail transport agent (e.g. Smail, Sendmail, &c)

> > Providing /usr/sbin/sendmail is required but not enough to call it
> > MTA.
> Providing /usr/sbin/sendmail is the necessary and sufficient condition
> to be a mail-transport-agent.
> > msmtp has not the features of a MTA,
> As it has been explained her, msmsp has exactly the features of a
> mail-transport-agent.

doesnt buy ... see above.

> > Providing /usr/sbin/sendmail is required, but not enough to call it MTA.
> Providing /usr/sbin/sendmail is the necessary and sufficient condition
> to be a mail-transport-agent.


> > > MTA that it requires some manual configuration before its
> > > /usr/sbin/sendmail can do anything useful with its input. Most MTA's
> > > do, actually.
> >
> > Satifying package's Depends: is in the domain of packaging system
> > handlers. Ever seen any debian/control ?
> You are talking nonsense. Inter-package dependencies are for
> expressing requirements on which packages must be installed on the
> same machine. Software running on other machines is explicitly not
> included.

No. You are talking nonsense, because you want to install a package which 
provides /usr/sbin/sendmail containing:
 'ssh mailhub /usr/sbin/sendmail'
while having possibly bunch of dependencies to be satisfied on the remote 
machine... Also policy says: '/etc/aliases is the source file for the system 
mail aliases (e.g., postmaster, usenet, etc.), it is the one which the 
sysadmin and postinst scripts may edit. After /etc/aliases is edited the 
program or human editing it must call newaliases. All MTA packages must come 
with a newaliases program, even if it does nothing, but older MTA packages 
did not do this so programs should not fail if newaliases cannot be found.'

I've read nothing from your posts about keeping these files in piece on the 
local and remote machine ... wont mention locking at all ... So the given 
example of yours is really fragile and insane.

I do not buy your bending examples, as well as the definition of what an MTA 
is and how the debian policy interpret it because it just mandates that the 
interface to send a mail message is /usr/sbin/sendmail (as per the FHS) and 
it uses the MTA abbreviation in a common, but obvious way.

That's all from me. 

> > p.s. s/an MTA/a MTA
> The letter M is pronounced [em], which starts with a wowel
> sound. Hence the proper article is "an", not "a".


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