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Re: POP3 mail fetcher that supports unreliable connections?

On 2003-11-03 18:28:57 -0600, Ron Johnson wrote:
> On Mon, 2003-11-03 at 15:52, Vincent Lefevre wrote:
> > On 2003-11-03 05:38:44 -0600, Ron Johnson wrote:
> > > Have you tried fetchmail?
> > 
> > It is easy to lose mail with fetchmail (and I did lose mail in the past
> > with it).
> Really?  Do you know how?

Yes: fetchmail sent the mail to the local SMTP server, and there was
a configuration problem. IMHO, a mail fetcher should never use this
method by default.

> > > The messages in /var/log/mail.log seem to indicate that it deletes
> > > each mail after a successful fetch.
> > 
> > How does it do that? I've been told that it was not possible with POP3
> > (unless by closing the connection after each mail, but that would be
> > very inefficient and not acceptable).
> RETR 1
> DELE 1

DELE doesn't delete the message; it just marks it as deleted.

RFC 1939 (Post Office Protocol - Version 3):

      DELE msg
             The POP3 server marks the message as deleted.  Any future
             reference to the message-number associated with the message
             in a POP3 command generates an error.  The POP3 server does
             not actually delete the message until the POP3 session
             enters the UPDATE state.

The problem with an unreliable connection is that it may be interrupted
before the POP3 session enters the UPDATE state.

Vincent Lefèvre <vincent@vinc17.org> - Web: <http://www.vinc17.org/> - 100%
validated (X)HTML - Acorn Risc PC, Yellow Pig 17, Championnat International
des Jeux Mathématiques et Logiques, TETRHEX, etc.
Work: CR INRIA - computer arithmetic / SPACES project at LORIA

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