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In article <1996Jul28.063301.5376@dcs.warwick.ac.uk>,
Zefram <A.Main@dcs.warwick.ac.uk> wrote:
>The more popular format seems to be the BSD format.  This is mostly a
>Good Thing; it's simpler and easier to implement, and doesn't rely on
>particular mail headers, but does lose some information.

It needn't.  You can do transparent character stuffing in a backward
compatible way by making the substitution

    s/^(>*From )/>\1/

when you store a message in an mbox file and

    s/^>(>*From )/\1/

when you read it.  (In English, at the beginning of a line, a sequence
of zero or more `>' characters followed by the sequence `From ' has one
extra '>' prepended.)

Programs that don't understand this format will not remove the extra `>'
(generally, they don't strip it even where there's only one, because
they can't tell whether it is part of the message or just stuffing), but
they will otherwise process the mbox correctly.

Of course, all mbox formats are inherently insecure (consider what
happens if the system crashes halfway through writing a message) and any
mail program that takes itself seriously will not use them, except
when necessary to communicate with more frivolous programs.

Tim.
--
Tim Goodwin   | "USENET, of course, is a pure and unadultered source
Cambridge, UK | of truth and wisdom." -- Richard Kettlewell

Original headers:

From: tim@pipex.net (Tim Goodwin)
Newsgroups: comp.mail.headers,comp.mail.misc
Subject: Re: Message Delimiters
Date: 1 Aug 1996 16:26:59 GMT
Organization: Unipalm PIPEX
Message-ID: <4tqlsj$34c@wave.news.pipex.net>
References: <4r16vn$3pi@sol.ctr.columbia.edu> <4s7q8j$n12@styx.uwa.edu.au>
  <4tbh4p$3g2@news-2.csn.net> <1996Jul28.063301.5376@dcs.warwick.ac.uk>

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