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From bugzi...@apache.org
Subject DO NOT REPLY [Bug 20440] - .torrent MIME type
Date Thu, 12 Jun 2003 03:14:53 GMT
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http://nagoya.apache.org/bugzilla/show_bug.cgi?id=20440

.torrent MIME type





------- Additional Comments From bram@bitconjurer.org  2003-06-12 03:14 -------
I'm not sure what the RFC means by x- mimetypes 'can't' be used. the x- mimetype
for BitTorrent was used on tens of thousands of machines during the period when
the protocol was in such flux that a protocol specification would have been
pointless because it would have become obsolete almost immediately. My decision
to use an unregistered mimetype during that period was based on the engineering
reality of it being impossible to design a massively scalable protocol without
trying it out under massive scaling. That mimetype has continued being used
since because there was no time in which it was necessary to break all existing
machine configurations which used BitTorrent, so there was no opportunity to
change the mimetype without inflicting unnecessary pain.

For what it's worth, the hoop-jumping involved in registering a mimetype would
have actually been quite a lot for me to do back when I was spending all my time
just trying to get BitTorrent to work.

Also, and this is just anecdotal, for another project I attempted to get an
assigned port number and got nowhere. I filled out the appropriate form and got
mail back months later with a simple request to fill out questions I hadn't
answered at length. I responded with an explanation of how those questions
appeared to be nonsensical in the context of the particular protocol, and a
request for clarification. I never heard back again. In practice everyone just
claims port numbers and the 'official' IANA list has a lot of holes.

Notably there's a plethora of x- pdf mimetypes and jigdo uses an x- mimetype, so
others have skipped out on formal registration as well.

In any case, There are now over a million deployed BitTorrent clients which
expect the x- mimetype, and switching it would incur the pain of breaking all of
them in exchange for dubious benefits, so the mimetype is going to remain the same.

-Bram

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