North American Network Operators Group

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Re: Fw: Administrivia: ORBS

  • From: Edward S. Marshall
  • Date: Thu Jan 13 21:02:00 2000

On Thu, 13 Jan 2000, Shawn McMahon wrote:
> <sigh>

My sentiments exactly.

> It is not necessary to spam anyone to test an open relay.  If you don't 
> understand how to test a mail server for open relaying without spamming 
> anyone, then you don't know enough about SMTP to participate in this 
> conversation.

You missed what I was saying. My point is that operating as a
network-hopping operation (by testing from addresses that the network
operator has not blocked) likens them to spammers sneaking around. A
firewall preventing the ORBS netblock from probing a particular range of
address space is an explicit statement that ORBS tests are unwelcome.

Why should the ORBS maintainers attempt to work around that very explicit
request from the network administrators to not probe their network? Their
most ethical and reasonable option is to add that address block manually
to the listing, because they cannot (without explicitly acting against the
wishes of that network's administration) verify that the addresses in that
space are relaying or not.

Let me make it simple for you: the firewall is a big red sign saying KEEP
OUT. ORBS is respecting that.

> My original statement stands; listing somebody's entire address range just 
> because they block you is wrong.

In your opinion. I see it as the only reasonable response for a system
that acts responsibly and consistantly on this point.

> The former is lazy and results in blocking folks who don't deserve it.

Blocking ORBS is an explicit request by the network administrator that
those probes are unwelcome. Hence, there's no other real option here,
without very clearly violating that request. The most I can see here would
be a single verification of a relay behind that netblock, just to be sure.

> P.S. I couldn't conceivably care less what NANOG archives have to say about 
> the matter.

Yes, but the membership here would prefer you did, since we're rehashing
ancient arguments here yet again.

> Most of the posts on the subject are by people who are wrong.

In your opinion.

> People who actually USE the service usually don't see emails from 
> those folks.

Hmm. I use it. Does that mean I have to unsubscribe from NANOG now?

Edward S. Marshall <[email protected]>
[                  Felix qui potuit rerum cognoscere causas.                  ]