ftp archives disappearing?

Brent Hilpert hilpert at cs.ubc.ca
Tue Mar 13 21:56:09 CDT 2007

Andrew Back wrote:
> I vote we dispense with both, set up an FTAM responder, build an OSI
> network, and bury this pesky Internet.

arcarlini at iee.org wrote:
> DEC missed the boat on burying this pesky Internet (or at least
> the TCP/IP on which it rests) so you'll have to just put
> up with it for the forseeable future!

Ohhh noooo ... OSI and X.400 ... For a good portion of the 80's I worked on a
project developing an X.400 mail system & OSI stack. X.400 received a lot of
attention back then as it was supposed to be (or become) the international
standard for email transfer. I was out of that by the late 80's when the
Internet was 'opened' and rolled over everything. I now think of that period
as the era of the protocol wars.

arcarlini at iee.org wrote:
> HEPNET was an OSI network at one point wasn't it?

In the mid 80's I think it was mostly DECNET and SNA, reflecting the
machines/systems installed at the participating organisations. Some of those
orgs/nodes used our X.400 system, so there was some OSI in there. I have no idea
what happened after 1988 or so, though, although I wouldn't be surprised if they
always had it in mind to migrate to international standards.

Andrew Back wrote:
>Would be nice to be able to play around with this stuff though, and 
>properly use the X.400 MTA & X.500 DSA you get licensed via OpenVMS 

On a similar note to Francesca's message about one's old data turning up years
later, a little while ago I asked a friend working at a local university if
they had any 9-track tapes still kicking around as I could use some
spares/scratch tapes. He took me to a storage room filled with a several
shelves of them and said take your choice. Looking over the reels I saw a
distribution tape from 1987 for the X.400 system I worked on, complete with
source code. (There were also some BSD unix dists from the 80's in there.)

So if I ever get a system to read the tape and run the X.400 system, and if
there is a common network level to agree on we could do some old-school
international-standard email networking ... <pause> ... on the other hand I'm
not entirely sure I want to go (back) there.

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