North American Network Operators Group

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Re: Why do so few mail providers support Port 587?

  • From: Steve Sobol
  • Date: Wed Feb 16 01:50:54 2005

Thor Lancelot Simon wrote:

What benefit, exactly, do you see to allowing unauthenticated mail
submission on a different port than the default SMTP port?
The relevant RFC says that port 587 must be used for authenticated connections ONLY.

Similarly, what harm, exactly, do you see to allowing authenticated
mail submission on port 25?
I think the idea was that Port 25 must also allow unauthenticated connections from foreign MTAs. Port 587 is designed to be used only to relay mail for authenticated users of the server in question, because outgoing Port 25 connections are so widely blocked by large ISPs.

What will actually give us some progress on spam and on usability
issues is requiring authentication for mail submission.
That's the way it's *supposed* to work now. What actually will give us progress on spam is a complete rewriting of the SMTP protocol, but quite frankly, I'm not holding my breath.

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