By Won Lee Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP)
What is SMTP? • Stands for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol • Used for sending and receiving electronic mail efficiently and reliably • Daily function of life • Used daily by the billions
History of SMTP • SMTP outgrew others in 1970’s. • Jonathan Postel wrote the SMTP definition in August 1982. • Documented under Request for Comments (RFC) 821 • Used by small collection of military, universities, and corporate research laboratories. • Connections were slow and unreliable but was only used by a handful of people.
Hist of SMTP (cont.) • Number of hosts were recognizable by each other. • Focused on Reliability rather then Security. • People helped by configuring system to “open relay”. • Meaning a configured host would accept any mail meant for other systems and relay it to the mail’s final destination. • First spam in 1978 by Salesman from DEC
SMTP Specifications • SMTP mail transaction is a text-based protocol that is done in three steps. • Firstly, the transaction starts with a MAIL command that gives the sender identification. • Followed by a series of one or more RCPT commands, giving the receiver information. • Finally, a DATA command initiates transfer of the mail data and is terminated by the “end of mail” data indicator, which also confirms the transaction. • SMTP is mainly delivery protocol and uses POP3 or IMAP to receive messages that’s being queued.
Privacy • Not encrypted • Email passes through intermediate computer • Internet Service Provider (ISP) holds backup copies
Security • Rise of Con artists, hackers, & spammers • Wasn’t based on security to start with • Hard to retrofit a new security mechanism onto something widely used as SMTP.
Pervasiveness • Choice of easy and fast communication throughout the world. • 247 billions emails sent daily • 90 trillion sent in year 2009
Reliability • Was based on Reliability • Emails do get lost due to crowded and spammed servers • Unpredictable timeliness between sender & receiver
Interoperability • No point of emails if it’s not interoperable • Anywhere around the world • To any connected device (i.e. PC’s to Smart Phones)
Support of the Community • Anybody that is a member of the IETF • Has been updated many times in different RFCs • Shares ideas how to keep unwanted emails out (i.e. spam, hackers)
Ease of Use • So easy a kid can do it • User friendly software/interface • No coding necessary, unlike old times.
Application of SMTP • Almost any device with internet connectivity. • Web based mail: yahoomail, gmail, hotmail, and many more that nobody even heard of. • Software such as; Outlook Express, Mozilla Thunderbird, Iphone, Blackberry. • Can be used for personal or business use.
Conclusion • It’s makes life very easy to communicate with people around the world. • Fast, cheap, and easy to use. • Definitely be around in the future because of its convenience.