Re: SMTP and unicode

From: Stephane Bortzmeyer (
Date: Tue May 17 2005 - 14:53:54 CDT

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    On Tue, May 17, 2005 at 05:38:41PM +0000,
     faraz siddiqi <> wrote
     a message of 26 lines which said:

    > is smtp by default support utf-8 encoding

    SMTP does not care about the *content* of the message, only about its
    transmission (at least it is the theory).

    This is why two RFC standardize email : RFC 2821 for SMTP and RFC 2822
    for the content. If you really write an email client (I'm not sure it
    is a good idea, you should build on an existing email program
    instead), you should really read these RFC, plus [RFC2045, RFC2046,
    RFC2049] for the MIME standard.

    The default channel in SMTP is only 7-bits wide, for historical
    reasons. Almost all the SMTP servers, for many, many years, accept to
    properly carry 8-bits data (wether UTF-8 or else). See RFC 2821, "2.4
    General Syntax Principles and Transaction Model".

    > i am nwe to programming

    I would not advise to start programming with an Unicode email MUA
    (Mail User Agent)...

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