Re: [exim] Handling addresses with apostrophe

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Author: Phil Pennock
Date:  
To: Odhiambo Washington
CC: exim-users
Subject: Re: [exim] Handling addresses with apostrophe
On 2011-01-27 at 00:04 +0300, Odhiambo Washington wrote:
> I run a mailing list (using Mailman) and someone requested that they be
> subscribed, but their address was john'doe@??? <john%27doe@???> -
> yes, and it immediately reminded me that I once got someone who wanted a
> mailing list with the name cars&transport, which I meant to find a way to
> handle but forgot to follow up.


Their email address as used for routing does not contain an apostrophe.
The display form does, but the email address itself just has a
percent-sign, which is legal.

This mapping is not standard and is likely to be unportable and will
break for them, but you could certainly subscribe them as
<john%27doe@???>. However, there's a convention in email called the
"percent hack", used for relaying email in the days before spammers
appeared.

Often, friendly postmasters would help others out with routing issues,
by running open relays, where the postmaster for "example.com" would let
you route to "exim-users@???" by accepting an address like
"exim-users%exim.org@???" and forwarding it on for you.

The appearance of spammers made this disappear quickly, but the
convention was strong enough that many mail admins block all email
addresses containing a "%" at all. In fact, the default Exim
configuration blocks these, both for local domains *and* for outbound
mail (to keep local users from causing problems for others) near the
start of "acl_check_rcpt".

So if your config is at all like the default, search for
"Restricted characters in address" and consider removing the '%' from
the regexp against local_parts. Then you can send to such addresses.

-Phil