[CrackMonkey] World's Greatest Programmer
silence at nilpotent.org
Mon Oct 23 12:30:11 PDT 2000
Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com> writes:
Yeah, I'm bored.
Bernstein's software is, first of all, pervaded by a
bloody-minded disregard for the rest of the world,
e.g., qmail's default habit of opening the maximum
possible number of simultaneous TCP connections for
attempted SMTP mail delivery, which is notorious for
crashing destination mail systems (and thus pioneered
the art of mail delivery as a Denial of Service
attack), and his anonftpd ftp server's demented EPLF
qmail, in its default configuration, opens 20 simultaneous remote
connections. They may or may not be all going to the same host, though.
The highest it can be set to in the default install is 120, I believe. This
number comes from the fact that most (legacy) Unix systems won't let a
process hold more than 255 open file descriptors at any given time. The
maxes are 120 for local delivers + 120 for remote + a few for qmail itself
If you have a mail server, in this day and age, that can't handle 120
concurrent connections, you seriously need to redo your mailhost setup.
"But what about the dialup servers?" -- just like sendmail has ETRN, qmail
has a similar mechanism for them. They're not affected.
(By the way, default qmail installations will only accept 40 concurrent
messages from the network at any time.)
EPLF is easy to parse for ftp clients. Very, very easy. It is not as
simple to parse by humans, but certainly not as difficult as you insinuate.
Look at http://cr.yp.to/ftp/list/eplf.html for the code to parse EPLF at the
Note that there is an ftp protocol ietf draft somewhere (wish I could find
the url) that defines a command to print out remote directory info in an
Second, it is characterised by insanely wrong design,
e.g., qmail's insistence that all files including
libraries, binaries, and configuration files must live
within /var/qmail, and the alias database being
scattered among myriad tiny files inside
/var/qmail/aliases, all with names starting with the
string ".qmail-". This alone will drive any sysadmin to
drink, in short order.
I won't disagree with the directory structure bit. However, the .qmail-
files stuff is all wrong. Nothing prevents you from using the qmail add-on
that lets you use /etc/aliases.
But the clincher is his licencing. You will find that
Bernstein software contains a copyright statement but
no licence text whatsoever. [...]
nor anyone else would then have the legal right to take
over development and distribute even the old versions,
let alone new ones.)
That's biased, and it ignores what he's said about why he's done things his
way. But, it is your FAQ.
Exactly those conditions apply to every Bernstein
package I know of. (Minor exception: Unmodified
specific versions of qmail may be distributed. But
you're betting that Bernstein never changes his mind,
if you use qmail.)
Quite a few libraries he has put out are in the public domain.
I see no reason to put up with that situation. Life is
too short to deal with Bernstein-isms, and there are
always other decent software choices.
You don't have to, and that's a good thing.
i want to live/to see the earth turn one more time
i wanna live/to feel a hand that isn't mine
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