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|| The TCP/IP Guide|
9 TCP/IP Application Layer Protocols, Services and Applications (OSI Layers 5, 6 and 7)
9 TCP/IP Key Applications and Application Protocols
9 TCP/IP File and Message Transfer Applications and Protocols (FTP, TFTP, Electronic Mail, USENET, HTTP/WWW, Gopher)
9 TCP/IP Electronic Mail System: Concepts and Protocols (RFC 822, MIME, SMTP, POP3, IMAP)
TCP/IP Electronic Mail Delivery Protocol: The Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP)
I have emphasized in my overall
description of TCP/IP electronic mail
that communication using e-mail requires the interaction of various
protocols and elements. One mistake that some people make is to equate
the method used for delivering e-mail with the entire system. This is,
however, an understandable mistake: just as the postal service is only
a part of the whole system of mailing a letter; it is nonetheless a
very big part. Likewise, the delivery of e-mail from sender
to recipient is arguably the most important part of e-mail as a whole.
In modern TCP/IP, this task is the responsibility of the Simple Mail
Transfer Protocol (SMTP).
In this section, I describe in detail
the operation of the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP). I begin with
an overview and history of SMTP and a discussion of the standards that
define it. I then examine the way that SMTP client/server communication
and message transport works. I explain the way that SMTP servers establish
connections and transaction sessions, and then the process by which
mail is transferred from one to another. I describe some of the special
features implemented in SMTP, and discuss SMTP security issues as well.
I conclude with a reference summary of SMTP commands and replies.
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The TCP/IP Guide (http://www.TCPIPGuide.com)
Version 3.0 - Version Date: September 20, 2005
© Copyright 2001-2005 Charles M. Kozierok. All Rights Reserved.
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