Dave Crocker (dcrocker@twg.arpa)
25 Sep 87 17:36:00 PDT

Reviving the Remote Controlled Transmission and Echoing telnet option is
an interesting idea. Certainly SOMETHING needs to be done. Part of the
problem with the original protocol (my very first effort and it looks like
it) was that it was not rich enough in maintaining synchronization.

Stepping back a bit, it requires that the serving host allow the application
to specify what kinds of characters are "interesting" (on the theory that
the sending host can aggregate all the characters up to the interesting
one and then send them in a batch). RCTE was based upon John Davidson's
(then of Univ. of Hawaii) observation that Tenex (a derivative of which
now runs on Decsystem-20s) had just such a feature.

Unfortunately, it is not common to some well-known operating system.

Even more interesting is the thought that such a protocol should be
more ambitious. RCTE does not know anything about the terminal or the
semantics of the session. A "display-oriented" protocol could be much
more powerful. John Day, then of Univ of Illinois, began a campaign for
such a telnet option and continued it for quite some time. I believe
that a version is still in the protocol books. Perhaps we should dust
it off and see why it shouldn't be aggressively implemented.


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