9 Jul 2004 gregors   » (Observer)

More Modern Mailsystem

A friend of mine and I have been kicking around an idea for a more modern mailserver. The current mail system does work, but allows for some bad things to happen.

  • SPAM
  • Any message stored on a server can legally be read
  • Source of email easily spoofed

Its been my limited experience mail servers that is they are a pain to install, administrate, and keep up to date. My thought is that more modern mail system would force the user (whether they know it or not) to use cryptography. This would give some advantages.

  • confidentiality
  • message integrity
  • sender confirmation
  • non-repudiation

This would break compatibilty with the current system. It would be possible to have a gateway that sends the messages unencrypted through normal mail, but only with the sender's permission. Servers would also sign the message verifying the source. Servers could build webs of trust. Since most larger companies are white-listing servers instead of black-listing them this seems to be the way things are going. Spammers wouldn't get into the web of trust plus they would have to encrypt the message to each individual person they would try to send the message to.

Database File System

I was surprised that I got some responses back from my first diary entry... I played around with the idea some. I started writing a linux file system driver, just to see what all would need to be done to get that working. That seems straight forward enough. I was talking to the idea to some of my some of my friends. They're mostly computer engineers, one's a math major, and the others are probably ee's. Their only response was a blank face. Judging by the reaction from some fairly computer-literate people I'm rather detered. I'm thinking now that its probably easier just to write a meta-filesystem that uses something like the find database to catalog files. Then have the database filesystem be just a view out of that dabase. This means that you'd have to run an update progam every time you added something in which is less than desirable.

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