Network Working Group W. Segmuller Request for Comments: 5231 B. Leiba Obsoletes: 3431 IBM T.J. Watson Research Center Category: Standards Track January 2008
Sieve Email Filtering: Relational Extension
Status of This Memo
This document specifies an Internet standards track protocol for the Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions for improvements. Please refer to the current edition of the "Internet Official Protocol Standards" (STD 1) for the standardization state and status of this protocol. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
This document describes the RELATIONAL extension to the Sieve mail filtering language defined in RFC 3028. This extension extends existing conditional tests in Sieve to allow relational operators. In addition to testing their content, it also allows for testing of the number of entities in header and envelope fields.
The RELATIONAL extension to the Sieve mail filtering language [Sieve] provides relational operators on the address, envelope, and header tests. This extension also provides a way of counting the entities in a message header or address field.
With this extension, the Sieve script may now determine if a field is greater than or less than a value instead of just equivalent. One use is for the x-priority field: move messages with a priority greater than 3 to the "work on later" folder. Mail could also be sorted by the from address. Those userids that start with 'a'-'m' go to one folder, and the rest go to another folder.
The Sieve script can also determine the number of fields in the header, or the number of addresses in a recipient field, for example, whether there are more than 5 addresses in the to and cc fields.
The capability string associated with the extension defined in this document is "relational".
The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT", "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in BCP 14, RFC 2119.
Conventions for notations are as in [Sieve] section 1.1, including the use of [Kwds] and the use of [ABNF].
This document defines two new match types. They are the VALUE match type and the COUNT match type.
The syntax is:
MATCH-TYPE =/ COUNT / VALUE
COUNT = ":count" relational-match
VALUE = ":value" relational-match
relational-match = DQUOTE ("gt" / "ge" / "lt" / "le" / "eq" / "ne") DQUOTE ; "gt" means "greater than", the C operator ">". ; "ge" means "greater than or equal", the C operator ">=". ; "lt" means "less than", the C operator "<". ; "le" means "less than or equal", the C operator "<=". ; "eq" means "equal to", the C operator "==". ; "ne" means "not equal to", the C operator "!=".
The COUNT match type first determines the number of the specified entities in the message and does a relational comparison of the number of entities, as defined below, to the values specified in the test expression.
The COUNT match type SHOULD only be used with numeric comparators.
The Address Test counts the number of addresses (the number of "mailbox" elements, as defined in [RFC2822]) in the specified fields. Group names are ignored, but the contained mailboxes are counted.
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RFC 5231 Sieve: Relational Extension January 2008
The Envelope Test counts the number of addresses in the specified envelope parts. The envelope "to" will always have only one entry, which is the address of the user for whom the Sieve script is running. Using this test, there is no way a Sieve script can determine if the message was actually sent to someone else. The envelope "from" will be 0 if the MAIL FROM is empty, or 1 if MAIL FROM is not empty.
The Header Test counts the total number of instances of the specified fields. This does not count individual addresses in the "to", "cc", and other recipient fields.
In all cases, if more than one field name is specified, the counts for all specified fields are added together to obtain the number for comparison. Thus, specifying ["to", "cc"] in an address COUNT test compares the total number of "to" and "cc" addresses; if separate counts are desired, they must be done in two comparisons, perhaps joined by "allof" or "anyof".
will always evaluate to false on an RFC 2822 compliant message [RFC2822], since a message can have at most one "to" field and at most one "cc" field. This test counts the number of fields, not the number of addresses.
Apart from several minor editorial/wording changes, the following list describes the notable changes to this specification since RFC 3431.
o Updated references, including changing the comparator reference from the Application Configuration Access Protocol (ACAP) to the "Internet Application Protocol Collation Registry" document [RFC4790].
o Updated and corrected the examples.
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RFC 5231 Sieve: Relational Extension January 2008
o Added definition comments to ABNF for "gt", "lt", etc.
o Clarified what RFC 2822 elements are counted in the COUNT test.
o Removed the requirement to strip white space from header fields before comparing; a more general version of this requirement has been added to the Sieve base spec.
An implementation MUST ensure that the test for envelope "to" only reflects the delivery to the current user. Using this test, it MUST not be possible for a user to determine if this message was delivered to someone else.
Additional security considerations are discussed in [Sieve].
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