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Re: URL parsing and IPv6 addresses

From: anthony baxter <anthony.baxter@aaii.oz.au>
Date: Sat, 10 Aug 1996 17:46:14 +1000
Message-Id: <199608100746.RAA12801@alamein>
To: galactus@stack.urc.tue.nl (Arnoud "Galactus" Engelfriet)
cc: www-talk@w3.org

 >>> Arnoud "Galactus" Engelfriet wrote:
> In article <960806.103807.CDT.TROTH@ua1vm.ua.edu>,
> Rick Troth <TROTH@UA1VM.UA.EDU> wrote:
> >         I think we need to send a resounding "NO!" to the IPNG wg.
> > Surely they can come up with something better.   I don't see why/how

> I'll second that. Do they have a public mailing list where we can
> express our concerns?
> 
> Galactus


This came up on the IPng working group quite some time ago. The
consensus seemed to me to be "Use the DNS, that's what it's for". (see
attached post for kre's opinion on this.) 

I really doubt that IPng would be changed because of this - I can't really
see a reason why you need to have IP addresses in URLs.

(Another note - before posting to the IETF IPng working group mailing list,  
please look through the working group's list archives so that the same
arguments aren't repeated. Thanks :)

Anthony

--------------- Begin Forwarded Mail ----------------------

To: huitema@pax.inria.fr (Christian Huitema)
Cc: "Brian Carpenter CERN-CN" <brian@dxcoms.cern.ch>,
        crawdad@fnal.gov (Matt Crawford), iesg@CNRI.Reston.VA.US,
        ipng@sunroof.Eng.Sun.COM
Subject: (IPng 1182) Re: clash between PS rfc1884 and PS rfc1783 
Date: Thu, 18 Jan 1996 04:44:58 +1100
Message-Id: <5356.821900698@munnari.OZ.AU>
From: Robert Elz <kre@munnari.OZ.AU>

    Date:        Wed, 17 Jan 1996 14:40:05 +0100
    From:        huitema@pax.inria.fr (Christian Huitema)
    Message-ID:  <v02120d08ad229015562c@[138.96.24.178]>

    I don't favor breaking rules in order to accomodate broken softwares.

I agree, but ..

    Broken mailers are going to remain broken whatever we do.

this is the problem, perhaps one that is unique to mail.

The problem is not the mailers that can, and will, be upgraded to
understand the new syntax, whatever it is, even if that is something
that should now be legal, but just is not implemented well, but
all the mailers that will never be upgraded.

For just about any other protocol you could ignore this problem
(eg: it is immaterial whether an FTP server that doesn't unterstand
V6 knows how to handle whatever the revised PORT command syntax is,
as it will never see that - its a V6 only thing).   Unfortunately,
for mail you can't - mail is relayed, and old V4 only mailers can
pass on mail with V6 addresses in the headers (one way or the
other).   Current v4 mailers will simply mangle IPv6 addresses
in the standard notation expresed in as a domain literal, that
is a very high price to pay for the ideal of "it is (now) broken,
fix it".

Incidentally, there is something of a stand off here - the ipngwg
simply say "this is a mail problem, they can fix it", and the
mail people (an almost totally disjoint set) say "those idiots
have broken things, we aren't going to mangle our mailers to
deal with that trash - have them choose a different notation".

As best I can tell, nothing at all is happening to attempt to
reconcile those positions.   We probably need a broad based
"IPv6 affected applications" BOF, or something, where people
involved in all kinds of applications which IPv6 might impact
can come and meet with IPv6 people and discuss the issues,
rather than each meeting at opposite ends of the IETF hotel, in
parallel, and ignoring each other (in Dallas, when I was bouncing
in and out of the ipngwg meeting I was also bouncing in and out of
the DRUMS (mail cleanups) wg meeting...)

    As for URLs, maybe the same solution should apply, i.e. somehow quote the
    IPv6 address between braces that tell you "this is an IPv6 address".

No, for URLs the correct answer is to do nothing.   There is no
need at all for a URL to contain a literal address, under any
circumstances (IPv6 or IPv4).   Mail has to work without the DNS,
or there is no rational way to communicate the DNS problems to
those who can fix them (so do things like telnet, ftp, and snmp, so
routers can be configured to allow the DNS to work, new versions
of code can be fetched when old ones are broken, and so the net
can be monitored so you can tell why things are not working).   Maybe
a few more.  The Web is, however, not one of those - it is entirely
acceptable to require that sites housing web pages be correctly
listed in the DNS so names can be used, there is no gain worth
having in allowing literal addresses, and much to lose.   Note,
it's only the servers that need DNS working - if you're trying to
connect to a WWW page to learn how to configure your own DNS domain
properly, that will still work - all you will need to have is a
working resolver, and that should simply be shipped with every
system.

kre
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Received on Saturday, 10 August 1996 03:47:15 GMT

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