Re: Call for Community Feedback: Retiring IETF FTP Service

Keith Moore <> Fri, 13 November 2020 18:59 UTC

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Subject: Re: Call for Community Feedback: Retiring IETF FTP Service
References: <20201113184715.3180627062A4@ary.qy>
From: Keith Moore <>
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Date: Fri, 13 Nov 2020 13:59:10 -0500
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On 11/13/20 1:47 PM, John Levine wrote:

>> 1. rsync is not good for file access
> I suppose there is a definition of file access for which that might
> still be true. I use rsync every night to mirror the rfc and i-d
> archives on my laptop. Works great.

Sure, if you don't mind having that large a cache.   I've done that in 
the past (though with ftp as I found it worked better than rsync).  But 
even though storage is very cheap these days, it's not free (especially 
when considering the cost of backups and other maintenance).   And 
there's something to be said for not having to cache the entire RFC and 
I-D repositories just to be able to occasionally access individual files 
in a convenient way.

> It is not 1995 any more and nobody
> sensible mounts a remote directory for one at a time retrieval of
> small files over a WAN.

Not for one-time retrieval, but for access anytime one wants it (and 
without having to hassle with a web browser, which already hogs too much 
screen space and attention while forcing an inflexible interface on its 

And the fact that this also worked in 1995 is not a bug, but a 
feature.   Obsolescence is a bug.

>> 2. traffic volume is not an indicator of importance.
> At some point of course it is. We're talking about 1/5000th of the
> traffic here, with strong hints that a lot of that trickle could
> easily switch to other paths.

Emphatically disagree.   Think about it some more.   I don't know how to 
say it any more clearly.

(also, the idea that numerous parties should have to change from using 
mature, proven protocols to more complex and dubious interfaces that 
seem likely to be less stable over time, should at least be questionable)