| Document: FSC-0076
  | Version:  001
  | Date:     03rd December 1993
  | Author:   Steve T. Gove

                        A Proposal for NetMail AreaTags.

                                 Steve T. Gove

Status of this document:

              This FSC suggests a proposed protocol for the
         FidoNet(r) community, and requests discussion and
         suggestions for improvements.  Distribution of this
         document is unlimited.

              Fido and FidoNet are registered marks of Tom
         Jennings and Fido Software.

General Introduction:

              Within the FTN networks today is the ability to
         belong to a variety of networks.  These can include, but
         are not limited to, FidoNet, RBBSNet, AlterNet, etc.
         Within each of these specific networks is the ability to
         pass "NetMail" both routed and direct.  But what if
         someone belongs to many of these networks?  How does one
         differentiate netmail between them?  Currently, NetMail
         does NOT allow for an AreaTag to allow for specifying
         between different Domains.  I propose that this change.
         My proposal is to allow for the areatag, for netmail, to
         be called "NETMAIL".

              current netmail  - none

              current echomail - AREA:<echoname>  ex. AREA:Binkley

              proposed netmail - NETMAIL:<domain> ex. NETMAIL:FidoNet
                                                  ex. NETMAIL:RBBSNet

              This would allow for multi domain'd netmail to be
         seperated into seperate sub-directories to allow our
         netmail readers to differentiate between them and allow
         for replying based on their originating Domain.


               "Compatibility is a set of abilities which, when
         taken as a whole, make it safe to list a net or node in
         the FidoNet nodelist."

              I believe that utilization of my proposal, will
         allow for full backwards compatability with reguard to
         netmail and will allow, at the same time, for forward
         progress to be achieved, both, within the fidonet
         community and with other FTN networks.

NetMail Definition:

              NetMail is a driving force behind FidoNet, and
         allows for the communication between two individuals
         anywhere in the world.

              See FTS-0001.015 for details on netmail packet

Required Control Information:

              An "AREA:" tag is what makes the difference between
         netmail and echomail.  This would change the definition
         between NetMail and EchoMail, as practiced today.  This
         proposal, however, would not effect EchoMail.  NetMail
         would now, simply, have an areatag named "NETMAIL".

              The NETMAIL line must be the first line in an
         netmail message's body.  A NETMAIL line's format is


         The NETMAIL tag is specifically _not_ preceded by a ^a.

              Where <DomainName> is the unique name of the
         NetMail's origin.  Area names should not begin with the
         plus or minus ("+" or "-") symbols.  Area names must not
         contain control characters (less than ASCII character
         32, a space).  Leading and trailing spaces on the area
         name should be ignored (and preferably not produced).
         Compares on the netmail name should be case insensitive.

              NetMail <Domain> names are generally kept as short
         as possible while still maintaining uniqueness and some
         sense of which Domain the NetMail belongs to.

EchoMail Definition:

              Echomail, sometimes called broadcast or conference
         mail, is netmail (ref. FTS-0001) containing additional
         control information that allows it to be "echoed"
         (forwarded) from node (site) to node.  Echomail is
         divided into areas, or conferences, with unique names.

Tom Jennings who "created" Fidonet.
Jeff Rush who "created" echomail.
Mark Kimes - 1:380/16@fidonet  (fsc-0068.a01)

Related documents:
FTS-0001            (transport layer, packet format, various
                     kludge lines)
Policy4             (whether you agree or not...!)


              For historical reasons, the term packet is used in
         FidoNet to represent a bundle of messages, as opposed to
         the more common use as a unit of communication, which is
         known as a block in FidoNet.

An Inbound Mail packet arrives.  (0000fff1.mo0)
The packet is unpacked and b498c880.pkt is found.

A "Tosser" looks at the *.pkt for an areatag,

  IF AREA: THEN (EchoMail) toss to appropriate area,
      IF NETMAIL: THEN toss to "Tosser" defined netmail area
           according to domain,
        IF NOT AREA: OR NETMAIL:  THEN *.pkt is (old-style) netmail
           toss to "Tosser" defined netmail area.

Sample "Tosser.CFG" file excerpt

NetArea       FidoNet        E:\Mail\NM_Fido
NetArea       RBBSNet        E:\Mail\NM_RBBS
NetArea       AlterNet       E:\Mail\NM_AltNt
NetArea       OtherNet       E:\Mail\NM_OtrNt

BadArea       BAD_MSGS       D:\Bad_Msgs

DupeArea      DUPES          E:\Mail\Dupes

LocalArea     Bad_Mail       D:\Bad_Mail
LocalArea     Bad_GMD        D:\Bad_GMD
LocalArea     WIMM           D:\WIMM

EchoArea      File_Announce  D:\File_Announce          1:106/6
EchoArea      MHS            D:\MHS\Mail\Users\Steve   1:124/1301
EchoArea      Test           D:\T\Test                 1:106/6 .1
EchoArea      R19SysOp       D:\R\R19Sysop             1:106/2000