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RFC 1689


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A Status Report on Networked Information Retrieval: Tools and Groups

Part 1 of 7, p. 1 to 34
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Network Working Group                                  J. Foster, Editor
Request for Comments: 1689             University of Newcastle upon Tyne
RARE Technical Report: 13                                    August 1994
FYI: 25
Category: Informational


                            A Status Report
                                   on
           Networked Information Retrieval: Tools and Groups
	

     Produced as a collaborative effort by the Joint IETF/RARE/CNI
        Networked Information Retrieval - Working Group (NIR-WG)

Status of this Memo

   This memo provides information for the Internet community.  This memo
   does not specify an Internet standard of any kind.  Distribution of
   this memo is unlimited.

Abstract

   The purpose of this report is to increase the awareness of Networked
   Information Retrieval by bringing together in one place information
   about the various networked information retrieval tools, their
   developers, interested organisations, and other activities that
   relate to the production, dissemination, and support of NIR tools.
   NIR Tools covered include Archie, WAIS, gopher and World Wide Web.

Table of Contents

    1.   Introduction ..............................................   2
    2.   How the information was collected .........................   3
    3.   What is covered? ..........................................   3
    4.   Updating information ......................................   5
    5.   Overview of the types of NIR Tool .........................   5
    6.   NIR Tools .................................................   9
    7.   NIR Groups ................................................ 123
    8.   Security Considerations ................................... 180
    9.   Acknowledgements .......................................... 180
   10.   Author's Address .......................................... 180
   11.   Appendix A: NIR Tool Template ............................. 181
   12.   Appendix B: NIR Group Template ............................ 188
   13.   Appendix C: Email Lists and Newsgroups .................... 192
   14.   Appendix D: Coming Attractions ............................ 207
   15.   Appendix E: Extinct Critters (Tools) ...................... 222
   16.   Appendix F: Extinct Critters (Groups) ..................... 222

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1.   Introduction

   As the network has grown, along with it there has been an increase in
   the number of software tools and applications to navigate the network
   and make use of the many, varied resources which are part of the
   network.  Within the past two and a half years we have seen a
   widespread adoption of tools such as the archie servers, the Wide
   Area Information Servers (WAIS), the Internet gopher, and the
   Worldwide Web (WWW).  In addition to the acceptance of these tools
   there are also diverse efforts to enhance and customise these tools
   to meet the needs of particular network communities.

   There are many organisations and associations that are focusing on
   the proliferating resources and tools for networked information
   retrieval (NIR).  The Networked Information Retrieval Group is a
   cooperative effort of three major players in the field of NIR: The
   Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the Association of European
   Research Networks (RARE) and the Coalition for Networked Information
   (CNI), specifically tasked to collect and disseminate information
   about the tools and to discuss and encourage cooperative development
   of current and future tools.

   The purpose of this report is to increase the awareness of NIR by
   bringing together in one place information about the various
   networked information retrieval tools, their developers, interested
   organisations, and other activities that relate to the production,
   dissemination, and support of NIR tools.  The intention is to make
   this a "living document".  It will be held on-line so that each
   section may be updated separately as appropriate.  In addition, it is
   intended that the full document will be updated once a year so that
   it provides a "snapshot" report on activities in this area.

   Whilst the NIR tools in this report are being used on a wide variety
   of information sources including files and databases there remains
   much that is currently not accessible by these means.  On the other
   hand, the majority of the NIR Tools described here are freely
   available to the networked Research and Education community.  Tools
   for accessing specialised datasets are often only available at a
   cost.

   It should be noted that in many ways networked information retrieval
   is in its infancy compared with traditional information retrieval
   systems.  Thesaurus construction, boolean searching and
   classification control are issues which are under discussion for the
   popular NIR Tools but as yet are not in widespread use.  However it
   should be said that, with the vast amount of effort that is currently
   going into the NIR field, rapid progress is being made.  Much work is
   currently being done on expanding some of the NIR tools to include

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   handling of multimedia information services.  Progress has also been
   made in the discussions on classifying and cataloguing electronic
   information resources.

2.  How the information was collected

   The information contained in this report was collected over the
   network from the contacts for each NIR Tool or Group using two
   templates:

     - the NIR Tool Template, included in Appendix A;
     - the NIR Group Template, included in Appendix B.

   The contents of these templates were discussed by the NIR WG in
   Boston (July, 1992) and subsequently on the email list.  (See the
   Section on the NIR-WG for details of how to join this mailing list.)
   The initial draft report was discussed at the NIR Working Group in
   Washington (November, 1992) and updated and added to at subsequent WG
   meetings.  Before the final submission as an RFC the individual
   templates were reviewed by independent reviewers from around the
   world.  Their efforts are acknowledged in Section 9.

   The NIR Tool template was used to collect the information necessary
   to identify and track the development of networked information
   retrieval tools.  This template asked for information such as how and
   where to get the software for each NIR Tool, documentation,
   demonstration sites, etc.  The main part of the template has been
   completed by the main individual responsible for the tool.  Sections
   of the template (e.g., on clients) may have required completion by
   others.

   The NIR Group template requested information on the aim and purpose
   of the group, the current tasks being undertaken, mailing lists,
   document archives, etc.

3.  What is covered?

   In the current report you will find information on the following NIR
   tools:

      Alex
      archie
      gopher
      Hytelnet
      Netfind
      Prospero
      Veronica
      WAIS  (including freeWAIS)

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      WHOIS
      World Wide Web  (including MOSAIC)
      X.500 White Pages

      Appendix D covers "Forthcoming Attractions":
         Hyper-G
         Soft Pages
         WHOIS++

 and the following NIR Groups:

      CNI          Coalition for Networked Information (CNI)
                   Architectures and Standards
                   Directories and Resource Information Services
                   TopNode for Networked Information Resources,
                                                  Services and Tools

      CNIDR        Clearinghouse for Networked Information Discovery
                                                       and Retrieval

      IETF         Integrated Directory Services (IDS)
                   Integration of Internet Information Resources (IIIR)
                   Networked Information Retrieval (NIR)
                      joint IETF/RARE WG
                   Network Information Services Infrastructure (NISI)
                   OSI-Directory Service (OSI-DS)
                   Uniform Resource Identifiers (URI)
                   Whois and Network Information Lookup Service (WNILS)

      IRTF         Internet Research Task Force Research Group on
                     Resource Discovery and Directory Service (IRTF-RD)

      NISO         Z39.50 Implementors Group

      RARE         Information Services and User Support Working Group
                     (ISUS)

      USMARC/OCLC  USMARC Advisory Group; OCLC Internet Resources
                        Cataloging Experiment (USMARC/OCLC)

   Appendix C contains a list of the relevant email lists and Appendix D
   contains information on "Coming Attractions" which are NIR tools not
   yet in widespread use.

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4.  Updating Information

   Updates on and additions to the information contained in this report
   are welcome. CNIDR have agreed to host the report and to accept
   updates to individual templates from the template maintainers.  Send
   updates using the appropriate template (from Appendix A or Appendix B
   of this report) to:

   nir-updates@cnidr.org

   The current templates and this report may be retrieved from the UK
   Mailbase Server:

   Via anonymous ftp (use your email address as the password):

     URL: ftp://mailbase.ac.uk/pub/lists/nir/files/tool.template
     URL: ftp://mailbase.ac.uk/pub/lists/nir/files/group.template
     URL: ftp://mailbase.ac.uk/pub/lists/nir/files/nir.status.report

   or via gopher or World Wide Web to mailbase.ac.uk

   or via email:

     Mail to:  mailbase@mailbase.ac.uk

  Text of the message:

     send nir tool.template
     send nir group.template
     send nir nir.status.report

5.  Overview of the types of NIR Tools

   The following is an overview of major networked information retrieval
   (NIR) tools available on the Internet.  There are many excellent
   books which discuss the Internet and NIR Tools in detail.  Such books
   include "The Whole Internet User's Guide and Catalog" by Ed Krol and
   published by O'Reilly and Associates, Inc and "The Internet Guide for
   New Users" by Daniel Dearn and published by Meckler.

   The number of these NIR tools is large and growing quickly.  Certain
   techniques reappear regularly and seemingly different tools may
   perform similar tasks, allowing a simple classification of projects
   encompassing most of the existing tools and services.

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   The classification presented here is only one possible ordering.  The
   goal is to define in broad outlines what can be done with particular
   tools, realizing that users will always find novel unanticipated ways
   of applying them.

   Interactive Information Delivery Services (Gopher, World Wide Web)

      Basic Internet services such as electronic mail and anonymous FTP
      can be used to share information across the Internet, but neither
      allows simple browsing and neither is particularly easy for the
      newcomer to learn to use.  Gopher and the World Wide Web (W3) are
      two recent developments that attempt to make it easier to
      distribute information over the Internet.  Both allow the user to
      browse information across the network without the necessity of
      logging in or knowing in advance where to look for information.

      The Gopher project was first developed at the University of
      Minnesota to provide a simple campus-wide on-line information
      system.  Gopher represents information as a simple hierarchy of
      menus and files.  It has limited capability to recognize different
      types of files, allowing, for example, the display of selected
      types of image files.  Gateways to other services are provided
      (usually in a manner that is transparent to the user).  The
      underlying Gopher protocol is simple, and has facilitated the
      creation of freely available clients for use on a variety of
      hardware platforms and operating systems.  The more recent Gopher+
      protocol adds the ability to provide documents in alternate forms
      (PDF, PostScript, RTF, Word).  These features and the ease of
      installing and administering gopher servers has led to an
      explosive growth of gopher sites since its initial deployment.  As
      of November 1993, there were over 2200 known servers.

      World Wide Web relies on hypertext; formatted documents are
      displayed, and hypertext links within the document can be selected
      to travel from the current document to another.  W3 allows a user
      to annotate documents (using hypertext links), provides gateways
      to other services, and has multimedia support (for example, on
      appropriate hardware platforms it can intermix text and images in
      a displayed document).  There is a range of free W3 clients,
      supporting many environments.  World Wide Web was originally
      developed at CERN for the High Energy Physics Community.

      Gopher and WWW share a maintenance problem in that there is no
      automated way to update links to other documents when those
      documents are moved or removed.

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   Directory Services (WHOIS, X.500)

      Directory Service tools are intended to provide a lookup service
      for locating information about users (often referred to as White
      Pages), or services and service providers (Yellow Pages).  For
      example, a White Pages service might be used to locate an
      electronic mail address, given a name and organization, while a
      Yellow Pages service could be used to locate an online library
      catalog or file archive site.

      One of the first directory services deployed on the Internet was
      WHOIS, a simple White Pages service created to track key network
      contacts for the early DARPA-sponsored incarnation of the
      Internet.  A number of sites currently operate WHOIS servers,
      based on a range of extensions and enhancements to the original
      model.  WHOIS enjoys the advantages of simplicity and the presence
      of WHOIS client software on a preponderance of Internet-connected
      hosts.  Work is underway on a more powerful protocol, known as
      WHOIS++, which is backwards-compatible with WHOIS.

      The X.500 Directory Service is a much more ambitious Directory
      project that has been under development for a number of years
      under the aegis of ISO/OSI.  Implementations, concerned primarily
      with White pages services, are available in the public domain and
      from commercial sources.  There are LDAP based X.500 clients
      available for most major platforms, as well as a LDAP based gopher
      gateway to X.500.

      Despite years of effort, there is still no single White Pages
      Directory Service for the entire Internet; Yellow Pages services
      remain even less well developed and deployed.  The cost of setting
      up the service is one obstacle; maintaining the required databases
      is even more daunting.

   Indexing Services (archie, Veronica, online library catalogs)

      There are several Internet-based projects that build indexed
      catalogs of information to facilitate searching and retrieval.
      The first such services provided network access to library card
      catalogs, with more recent projects indexing network-based
      information.

   archie:

      The archie service began as a simple project to catalog the
      contents of hundreds of ftp-accessible online file archives.  The
      archie service gathers location information, name, and other
      details describing such files and creates an index database.

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      Users can contact an archie server and search this database for
      files they require.

      The archie service is accessible through a range of access
      methods, including telnet, stand-alone client programs running on
      a user's own machine, gopher, WWW, or via electronic mail.  The
      initial implementation of archie tracks over 2,100,000 filenames
      on over 1,200 sites around the world (as of November 1993).  There
      are about 30 (geographically distributed) archie servers.  Both
      commercial and freely available versions of the archie client
      software are available.

      Work continues on extending the archie service to provide
      additional types of information.  The latest version is being used
      to provide a prototype Yellow Pages service and directories of
      online library catalogs and electronic mailing lists.

   Veronica:

      Veronica arose as an attempt to do for the world of Gopher what
      archie did for the world of ftp.  A central server periodically
      scans the complete menu hierarchies of Gopher servers appearing on
      an ever-expanding list (over 2000 sites as of November 1993).  The
      resulting index is provided by a veronica server and can be
      accessed by any gopher client.

   Online library catalogs:

      A large number of libraries make their computerized library
      catalogs available over the Internet.  Most are available through
      telnet sessions in which the user connects to a specific address
      and logs in using a specific login name.  Some are also available
      through other tools, such as Gopher.

   Text-based Indexing Services (WAIS)

   WAIS:

      Wide Area Information Servers (WAIS) is a system for indexing and
      serving information in a network-based environment.  It is
      distinct from indexing tools such as archie and veronica in that
      it is used to index text-based target documents on a server, as
      well as descriptions of the contents of a server.

      A WAIS server allows the administrator to set up an index of the
      documents (or resources) to be published.  The user employs a WAIS
      client to attach to a particular WAIS server, and specifies a
      search pattern which is matched against the server's index.  In

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      early WAIS clients, searches are specified as simple natural-
      language queries; common ("stop") words are removed, and Boolean
      "ORs" are implicitly added between the remaining list of words.
      Matching documents are rank-ordered according to a simple
      statistical weighting scheme which attempts to indicate likely
      relevance.  The user may choose to view selected documents, or
      further refine the search.  The results of one search may be used
      to successively refine future searches ("relevance feedback").
      Gopher clients can also access WAIS servers via a transparent
      gateway.

      Both freely available and commercial versions of WAIS servers and
      clients are available.  Current work is attempting to add Boolean
      expressions and proximity and field specifications to queries.

      There are currently (as of November 1993) some 500 registered WAIS
      databases with an estimated 2000 additional databases that are not
      yet registered.  There are approximately another 100 commercial
      WAIS databases.

6.  NIR Tools

   This section contains detailed information about the various NIR
   Tools.  It is ordered alphabetically.

 =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

 ALEX

 Date template updated or checked:  19th March, 1994
 By: Name:             Vincent Cate
     Email address:    vac@cs.cmu.edu

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 NIR Tool Name:      Alex

 Brief Description of Tool:

   OVERVIEW:

      The Alex filesystem provides users and applications transparent
      read access to files in anonymous FTP sites on the Internet.
      Today there are thousands of anonymous FTP sites with a total of a
      few millions of files and roughly a terabyte of data.  The
      standard approach to accessing these files involves logging in to
      the remote machine.  This means that an application can not access
      remote files like local files.  This also means that users do not

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      have any of their aliases or local tools available.  Users who
      want to use an application on a remote file first have to manually
      make a local copy of the file.  There is no mechanism for
      automatically updating this local copy when the remote file
      changes.  The users must keep track of where they get their files
      from and check to see if there are updates, and then fetch these.
      In this approach many different users at the same site may have
      made copies of the same remote file each using up disk space for
      the same data.

      Alex addresses the problems with the existing approach while
      remaining within the existing FTP protocol so that the large
      collection of currently available files can be used.  To get
      reasonable performance long term file caching is used.  Thus
      consistency is an issue.  Traditional solutions to the cache
      consistency problem do not work in the Internet FTP domain:
      callbacks are not an option as the FTP protocol has no provisions
      for this and polling over the Internet is slow.  Therefore, Alex
      relaxes file cache consistency semantics, on a per file basis, and
      uses special caching algorithms that take into account the
      properties of the files and of the network to allow a simple
      stateless filesystem to scale to the size of the Internet.

   USER'S VIEW:

      To a user or application, Alex is just a normal filesystem.  Any
      command that works on local files will work on Alex files.  Since
      Alex is a real filesystem, nothing needs to be recompiled and no
      libraries are changed.  Thus, users can apply all of their
      existing skills and tools for using files.

      The user sees a filesystem with a hierarchical name space.  At the
      top level (/alex) there are top-level Internet domains like "edu",
      "com", "uk", and "jp".  Each component of the hostname becomes a
      directory name. Then the remote path is added at the end.  If the
      user does a "ls /alex/edu/berkeley" he sees some machine names
      such as "ucbvax" and "sprite" and some directories on
      berkeley.edu.  From the "ls" it is not clear what is where.  The
      user may or may not be aware of host boundaries.

   INFORMATION PROVIDER'S VIEW:

      Alex is implemented as a user level NFS server.  NFS was chosen
      because it makes it easy to add Alex to a wide range of machines.
      Most machines can simply use the mount command.

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      The model of usage is that there is one Alex server running at
      each institution (though this is not required in any way).  Users
      mount the local server which caches files for users at that site.

      Any information put into any anonymous FTP site becomes available
      via Alex.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Primary Contact(s):

  Name:                 Vincent Cate

  Email address:        vac@cs.cmu.edu

  Postal Address:       School of Computer Science
                        5000 Forbes Ave.
                        Pittsburgh PA, 15213

  Telephone:            +1-412-268-3077

  Fax:                  +1-412-681-1998

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Help Line:

  At this time Alex is a one person project (Vince).

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Related Working Groups:

  Maybe the FTP working group.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Sponsoring Organization / Funding source:

  Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Information Science and
  Technology Office, under the title "Research on Parallel Computing,"
  ARPA Order No.  7330.  Work furnished in connection with this research
  is provided under prime contract MDA972-90-C-0035 issued by DARPA/CMO
  to Carnegie Mellon University.  Vincent Cate is supported by an "Intel
  foundation graduate fellowship".

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

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 Mailing Lists:

  Address:              alex-servers@cs.cmu.edu

  Administration:       alex-servers-request@cs.cmu.edu


  Description:          alex-servers is for people setting up an Alex
                        fileserver.

  Archive:              alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu (128.2.209.13)

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 News groups:

  None.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Protocols:

  What is supported:   Any machine that can NFS mount a fileserver.

  What it runs over:   Unix machine and FTP

  Other NIR tools this interworks with:

   Uses FTP sites.

   WAIS can be used to index files in Alex
    (this was done for ftpable-readmes and cs-techreports WAIS servers)

      New versions of archie can output Alex paths.

 Future plans:         Graduate from CMU.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Servers:

  Date completed or updated:    19 March 1994
  By: Name:                     Vincent Cate

  Platform:                     UNIX

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         Vincent Cate

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  Email address:                vac@cs.cmu.edu
  Telephone:                    +1-412-268-3077

  Server software available from:  alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu

  Location of more information:
   No other place to go to.

  Latest version number:
   New versions all the time.

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:
   This software is known to still contain bugs.

  Approximate number of such servers in use:
   200.

  General comments:
   You can use lpr, make, grep, more, etc. on files around the world.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Clients:

  You just do an NFS mount of the server.  No client software
  is needed.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Demonstration sites:

  Site name:   alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu

  Access details - do the following as root:
   mkdir /alex
   mount -o timeo=30,retrans=300,soft,intr alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu:/ /alex

  Example use:
   ln -s /alex/edu/cs/cmu/sp/alex/links alexlinks
   cd alexlinks
   ls
   cd cs-tr
   cd ls
   cd purdue
   ls
   lpr TR758.PS

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  If you like Alex and want to use it regularly please find, or set up,
  an Alex fileserver at/near your site.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Documentation:

  ftp://alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu/www/alex.html
  ftp://alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu/doc/intro.ps
  ftp://alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu/doc/NIR.Tool
  ftp://alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu/doc/alex.post

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Bibliography:

  @InProceedings{cate:alex,
  author =      "Vincent Cate",
  title =       "Alex - a Global Filesystem",
  booktitle =   "Proceedings of the Usenix File Systems Workshop",
  year =        1992,
  pages =       "1--11",
  month =       may,
  place =       "Ann Arbor, MI",
  keyword =     "distributed file system, wide-area file system"

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Other Information:

  FTP to alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu and "cd to doc".  Get the "README" or
  anything else there.  A current version of this document may be there
  and called "NIR.Tool".  In Alex this file is named
  "/alex/edu/cmu/cs/sp/alex/doc/NIR.Tool".

 =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

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 ARCHIE

 Date template updated or checked:       1 March, 1994
 By: Name:                               Peter Deutsch
     Email address:                      peterd@bunyip.com

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 NIR Tool Name:                  archie

 Brief Description of Tool:

   The archie system is a tool for gathering, indexing and serving
   information from around the Internet.  The current version serves a
   collection of filenames found at anonymous FTP sites, as well as a
   smaller collection of text descriptions for software, data and other
   information found at anonymous FTP archives.  Additional databases
   are under development.

   User's View:

      Users run a client program to connect to an archie server and
      issue search commands to find information in an archie database.
      In the case of an anonymous FTP filename, this information can
      then be used to fetch the file directly from the archive site
      using the `ftp' command.  To the user, archie could be seen as a
      `secondary source' of information which, because of the high cost
      of locating and serving, would not otherwise be available.

      The user searches the archie databases through either a telnet
      session to a machine running an archie server, or by using a
      stand-alone client program (which uses the Prospero protocol for
      sending and receiving requests).  There is also an email interface
      which allows users to send and receive search requests via
      electronic mail.

      Freely available archie clients exist for most operating systems
      and can be fetched using anonymous FTP from most of the current
      archie servers.  There are also gateways to the archie system from
      many other NIR tools, including Gopher, WAIS and WWW.  An X.500
      interface to archie is currently under development.

   Information Provider's View:

      There are two types of information providers who would be
      interested in archie.  Primary information providers are
      interested in having a summary of the information provided by
      their service tracked by an archie server.  Secondary service

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      providers, or those sites wishing to provide a "value-added"
      service for the Internet can elect to run an archie server at
      their site to provide a useful service to users, to raise the
      profile of their institution on the Internet, or to provide market
      differentiation (for commercial service providers).

      The archie system is of particular utility serving information
      where there are many sites to be searched and/or where the cost of
      searching each site is high.

      For example, there are currently over 1,200 anonymous FTP sites on
      the Internet, and the number continues to grow.  Searching for a
      specific filename at a single site may involve scanning hundreds,
      or even thousands of filenames.  Thus, most operators of anonymous
      FTP archives welcome the fact that archie indexes and serves the
      names of all files available from each site tracked.

   Information Types Supported:

      The archie system allows the gathering and serving of arbitrary
      information types, although the current system serves only
      freeform text and a dedicated text format for filename listings.
      Internally, the archie system now supports a WAIS search engine
      and frontends for Gopher, WWW and WHOIS++ for accessing archie
      information through Gopher clients is now being tested.
      Additional collections of information to be served by the archie
      software will be announced.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Primary Contact(s):

  Name:                   Archie Group, Bunyip Information Systems Inc.

  Email address:          info@bunyip.com

  Postal  Address:        Bunyip Information Systems Inc.,
                          310 St-Catherine St. West, suite 202,
                          Montreal, QC
                          CANADA H2X 2A1

  Telephone:              +1-514-875-8611
  Fax:                    +1-514-875-8134

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Help Line:       for archie server system and telnet client

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  Name:           Archie Group, Bunyip Information Systems Inc.

  Email address:  info@bunyip.com

  Telephone:      +1-514-875-8611


  Level of support offered:
                  o commercial support for server
                   (primarily for systems maintainers)

                  o voluntary helpdesk support for freeware clients

                  o volunteer helpdesk support for Internet information
                   gathering tools in general

  Hours available:        - server system:
                           email:                24 hour support
                           phone support:        9-5 EST

                         - helpdesk consultation: as time permits

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Related Working Groups:

  IETF, IIIR, WNILS, URI.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Sponsoring Organisation / Funding source:

  Bunyip Information Systems Inc.

  Funded by licensing of archie software and development contracts from
  sponsors.  Additional information services based upon this software
  are now being tested.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Mailing Lists:

  Address:              archie-people@bunyip.com

  Administration:       archie-people-request@bunyip.com

  Description:

Top      ToC       Page 18 
   This mailing list is for people interested in the archie project and
   its future developments.  Announcements of upgrades, new services,
   etc. are made to this list.

  Archive:              none

                        -------------------

  Address:              archie-maint@bunyip.com

  Administration:       archie-maint-request@bunyip.com

  Description:

   This mailing list is for people who operate and maintain archie
   servers.  Announcements of bug fixes, new releases and discussion of
   new features are carried out on this list.

  Archive:
   "archives.cc.mcgill.ca:/pub/mailing-lists/archie-maint"

                        -------------------

  Address:              iafa@bunyip.com

  Administration:       iafa-request@bunyip.com

  Description:

   This mailing list is for people who are involved in the Internet
   Anonymous FTP Archives Working Group of the IETF.  This group was
   involved in standardizing the encoding of information at anonymous
   FTP archives and thus is of interest to operators and users of the
   archie system.  It came to completion in November, 1992 and produced
   two documents which have been presented to the IETF as informational
   RFCs.

  Archive:              "archives.cc.mcgill.ca:/pub/mailing-lists/iafa"

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 News groups:

  Name:                 comp.archives.admin

Top      ToC       Page 19 
  Description:

  This newsgroup is for operators and maintainers of Internet archives.
  Announcements and discussions of issues related to archie are
  presented here, as well as discussions of more general issues
  relating to archiving and Internet services.

  Archive:              not known

                        -------------------

  Name:                 alt.internet.services

  Description:

  This newsgroup is for people interested in Internet-related services,
  with a focus at the user level.  Announcements and discussions of
  issues related to archie are presented here, as well as discussions
  of more general issues relating to Internet services.

  Archive:              not known

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

   Protocols:

   What is supported:

      The current archie system clients use the Prospero protocol for
      communication with the search engine on the archie server.  Freely
      available clients are available which include source to perform
      this communication for those wishing to implement additional
      clients.

      The archie server is capable of building arbitrary databases,
      using arbitrary search and access engines and the current release
      ships with the public domain implementation of WAIS.  We expect
      future archie servers to serve information using this protocol.
      The current server system assumes the TCP/IP protocol suite is
      available, and in particular the ftp protocol for data gathering.

      The archie system can be accessed through systems operating the
      Gopher, WAIS and WWW (HDDL) protocols.  A gateway from the X.500
      system is under development.

Top      ToC       Page 20 
   What it runs over:

      The Prospero protocol implementation runs over its own
      implementation of a reliable datagram protocol based upon UDP.
      Data gathering runs over the TCP/IP protocol suite.

   Other NIR tools this interworks with:

      Prospero, Gopher, WAIS, WWW.

   Future plans:

      The archie system became a commercial product in October, 1992,
      marketed by Bunyip Information Systems Inc.  The company plans to
      market additional data gathering modules to allow the server code
      to build additional types of databases.  Work is also underway to
      integrate extensions to WHOIS to allow the building and
      maintaining of White Pages (names) directories.  The company is
      also working on other Internet information tools that will work
      with the archie system.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Servers:

  Date completed or updated:    1 November, 1993
  By: Name:                     Peter Deutsch
      Email address:            peterd@bunyip.com

  Platform:                 Sun SPARC running SunOS 4.1 or later.
                            IBM RS6000 running AIX version 3.2 or later.
                            for additional UNIX platforms, contact
                            Bunyip Information Systems details.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         Alan Emtage
  Email address:                bajan@bunyip.com
  Telephone:                    +1-514-398-8611

  Server software available from:
   Bunyip Information Systems Inc.
   email:  info@bunyip.com

  Location of more information:

  Additional information on the archie product line is available from
  the anonymous ftp archives on the various archie server sites. Try
  "archie.ans.net", "archie.sura.net", "archie.au", etc.

Top      ToC       Page 21 
  Latest version number:          archie 3.1

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:

  This is the  commercial inmplementation of the archie system,
  replacing a version done as a Masters project at McGill University
  during the period 1990-1992.  It comes with an archie telnet client
  that offers a number of minor improvements over earlier versions.
  Additional releases, with a number of additional improvements, are
  planned in the coming months.

  Approximate number of such servers in use:
   Currently about 27 (not all are publicly available)

  General comments:

  Most users access archie through a freeware or public domain client
  program.  These are available from most archie servers via anonymous
  FTP.  Check out the archie directory on any of the publicly available
  archie servers or the banner message when logging into any of the
  archie telnet clients for more details.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Clients:

  Date completed or updated:    1 November, 1993
  By: Name:                     Peter Deutsch
      Email address:            peterd@bunyip.com

  Platform:                     command line shell, written in C. Works
                                with both UNIX and MSDOS/OS2 shells.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         Brendan Kehoe
  Email address:                brendan@cygnus.com
  Telephone:                    not known

  Client software available from: most archie server hosts and major
                                  Internet archives. Look for filename
                                  "c-archie-1.3.2.tar.Z".

  Location of more information:   Packaged with software.

  Latest version number:          1.3.2

Top      ToC       Page 22 
  Brief Scope and Characteristics:

  This program provides a simple command line interface to the archie
  server system, using the Prospero protocol.  Written in C, it has
  been ported to MSDOS and OS2.

  General comments:

  This program should not be confused with the archie system telnet
  interface, which is a program that runs on the archie server itself.

  Future plans:  Not known

                        -------------------

  Date completed or updated:    1 November, 1993
  By: Name:                     Peter Deutsch
      Email address:            peterd@bunyip.com

  Platform:                     command line shell, written in Perl.
                                Works with both UNIX and MSDOS/OS2
                                shells.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         Khun Yee Fung
  Email address:                clipper@csd.uwo.ca
  Telephone:                    not known

  Client software available from: most archie server hosts and major
                                  Internet archives. Look for filename
                                  "perl-archie-3.8.tar.Z".


  Location of more information:   Packaged with software.

  Latest version number:          3.8

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:

  This program provides a simple command line interface to the archie
  server system, using the Prospero protocol.  Written in Perl.

  General comments:

  This program should not be confused with the archie system telnet
  interface, which is a program that runs on the archie server itself.

  Future plans:  Not known

Top      ToC       Page 23 
                        -------------------

  Date completed or updated:      1 November, 1993
  By: Name:                       Peter Deutsch
  Email address:                  peterd@bunyip.com

  Platform:                       archie client program for VMS systems.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                           Brendan Kehoe
  Email address:                  brendan@cygnus.com
  Telephone:                      not known

  Client software available from: most archie server hosts and major
                                  Internet archives. Look for filename
                                  "archie-vms.com".

  Location of more information:   Packaged with software.

  Latest version number:          not known.

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:

  This program provides a simple command line interface to the archie
  server system for users of VMS.

  General comments:

  This program should not be confused with the archie system telnet
  interface, which is a program that runs on the archie server itself.

  Future plans:  Not known

                        -------------------

  Date completed or updated:      1 November, 1993
  By: Name:                       Peter Deutsch
  Email address:                  peterd@bunyip.com

  Platform:                       Xwindows client (X11R4)

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                           George Ferguson
  Email address:                  ferguson@cs.rochester.edu
  Telephone:                      not known

  Client software available from: cs.rochester.edu, most archie server
                                  hosts and major Internet archives.

Top      ToC       Page 24 
                                  Look for file "xarchie-1.3.tar.Z".

  Location of more information:   Packaged with software.

  Latest version number:          xarchie-1.3

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:

  This program provides an Xwindows client that allows users to search
  the archie anonymous FTP database.  Also included is the capability of
  fetching files (using ftp).

  General comments:               none.

  Future plans:  Not known

                        -------------------

  Date completed or updated:      1 November, 1993
  By: Name:                       Peter Deutsch
  Email address:                  peterd@bunyip.com

  Platform:                       NeXTStep client.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                          Scott Stark
  Email address:                 me@superc.che.udel.edu
  Telephone:                     not known

  Client software available from: most archie server hosts and major
                                  Internet archives. Look for file
                                  "NeXTArchie.tar.Z".

  Location of more information:   Packaged with software.

  Latest version number:

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:

  This program provides a NeXTStep client that allows users to search
  the archie anonymous FTP database.  Also included is the capability
  of fetching files (using ftp).

  General comments:               none.

  Future plans:  Not known

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

Top      ToC       Page 25 
 Demonstration sites:

  Site name:      any one of:

    archie.rutgers.edu   128.6.18.15     (Rutgers University)
    archie.unl.edu       129.93.1.14     (University of Nebraska in
                                          Lincoln)
    archie.sura.net      128.167.254.179 (SURAnet archie server)
    archie.ans.net       147.225.1.2     (ANS archie server)
    archie.au            139.130.4.6     (Australian server)
    archie.funet.fi      128.214.6.100   (European server in Finland)
    archie.doc.ic.ac.uk  146.169.11.3    (UK/England server)
    archie.cs.huji.ac.il 132.65.6.15     (Israel server)
    archie.wide.ad.jp    133.4.3.6       (Japanese server)

  Client software should be supported at all of these sites.
  Additional sites are available. Use the "sites" command in the archie
  telnet interface at any of the above sites for a more complete lists.

  Access details:
                - telnet to any of the above sites
                - login as user `archie' (no password is required)
                - type `help' at the prompt to get started.

  Note:  Some people forget and use ftp in place of telnet. This will
         not work. The hint that this is being done is that they claim
         that a password is needed, not that the site can't be found.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Documentation:

  Document Title:         What is archie
  Location details:       anonymous FTP from archie.ans.net
  Site:                   archie.ans.net
  Full file name:         "pub/archie/doc/whatis.archie"
  Description:            Brief overview of the archie system.

  Document Title:         archie man pages
  Location details:       anonymous FTP from archie.ans.net
  Site:                   archie.ans.net
  Full file name:         "pub/archie/doc/archie.man.*"
  Description:            Manual pages for the archie system telnet
                          interface in various formats (raw ASCII,
                          nroff, compressed, etc.). This document also
                          explains the various search options and other
                          features, so is of use to users of the other
                          archie client programs.

Top      ToC       Page 26 
  Document Title:         What's New in 3.0
  Location details:       anonymous FTP from archie.ans.net
  Site:                   archie.ans.net
  Full file name:         "pub/archie/doc/whats.new"
  Description:            Description of the changes to archie for the
                          first commercial release

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Bibliography:            none

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Other Information:       none


 =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Top      ToC       Page 27 
 GOPHER

 Date template updated or checked:  14 March 1994
 By: Name:   Mark P. McCahill
     Email address:   mpm@boombox.micro.umn.edu

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 NIR Tool Name:  Internet Gopher

 Brief Description of Tool:

   The Internet Gopher protocol is a client/distributed-server document
   search and retrieval protocol originally developed at the University
   of Minnesota.  Gopher was originally created as a fast, simple,
   distributed, campus-wide information search and retrieval system;
   ease of use and implementation has made Gopher increasingly popular
   on the Internet.  Since its original release, many folks on the
   Internet have contributed to its growth, submitting patches, servers,
   clients, and linking their local servers into the worldwide network
   of Gopher servers.  Gateways exist to seamlessly access a variety of
   non-Gopher services such as ftp, WAIS, USENET news, Archie, Z39.50
   (1992 rev), X.500 directories, Sybase and Oracle SQL servers, etc.
   In addition, an "archie for gopherspace" called Veronica (very easy
   rodent-oriented net-wide index to computerized archives) has been
   developed at the University of Nevada.  Veronica makes it easy to
   search for items in gopherspace by title.

   The gopher protocol is often described as "fiercely simple"; it is
   connectionless (stateless), and uses TCP reliable streams.  A client
   connects to a server using TCP, and sends a one-line text "selector
   string".  The server responds by returning the item (a file, a
   directory listing, or a link to some other service) corresponding to
   the selector string and immediately closing the connection.  Items in
   directory listings are returned as a series of lines terminated by
   carriage-return line-feed.  Each item (line) is defined by a one-
   character tag to specify the item type, a display string or item-name
   that the client should display to the user, and a number of tab
   delimited fields to specify the selector string, host domain name and
   port number.  Because of its simple and connectionless nature, gopher
   servers make very minimal demands on their host machines and gopher
   clients are extremely easy to implement.

   The users view the Gopher world as a series of networked hierarchical
   directories much like a familiar filesystem.  However, the links
   define a graph rather than a simple rooted tree.  Links in the Gopher
   graph may define services other than simple files or directories;
   these include cso (qi) servers, telnet sessions, links to other

Top      ToC       Page 28 
   gopher servers, and links to gateway servers.

   The information provider's simplest view is that files and
   directories below a certain root directory on their machine are all
   visible and available for retrieval by gopher clients.  More features
   like long names, item types, links, and gateway services are
   available to the more sophisticated information provider.

   Servers and clients run on most popular hardware, including Macs,
   UNIX boxes, PC-DOS boxes.  The Internet Gopher name is copyright (c)
   1991-1992 by the University of Minnesota.  The Internet Gopher
   protocol is described in an informational RFC (1436) available at
   better RFC archives everywhere.  Extensions to the base gopher
   protocol allow for associating meta-information with gopher items,
   alternate views of documents (i.e., text, postscript, rtf, etc.) and
   electronic forms.  Collectively, these extensions are referred to as
   Gopher+.  Gopher+ is upward compatible with the orginal gopher
   protocol.  The gopher software may be retrieved from numerous Gopher
   or FTP archive sites, including the University of Minnesota Gopher
   server, the Info-Mac Archive Gopher server, and by anonymous FTP from
   boombox.micro.umn.edu and sumex-aim.stanford.edu. As of December
   1993, about 1/3 of the approximately 4800 Gopher servers on the
   internet support Gopher+.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Primary Contact(s):

  Name:                 The Internet Gopher Development Team

  Email address:        gopher@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Postal Address:       Microcomputer & Workstation Networks Center
                        152 Shepherd Labs
                        100 Union Street SE.
                        University of Minnesota
                        Minneapolis, MN 55455

  Telephone:            +1-612-625-1300

  Fax:                  +1-612-625-6817

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Help Line:

  Name:                 Microcomputer HelpLine;
                        ask for The Internet Gopher Development Team

Top      ToC       Page 29 
  Email address:        gopher@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Telephone:            USA: 612 MA MICRO (+1-612-626-4276)
                        Helpline is for general support at the U of M.

  Level of support offered:     all users

  Hours available:      Phone Helpline 9-4 weekdays.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Related Working Groups:

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Sponsoring Organisation / Funding source:

  The University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

 ----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Mailing Lists:

  Address:              gopher-news@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Administration:       gopher-news-request@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Description:          News and views of all things gopher. Tends to
                        be a high volume mailing list and technically
                        oriented.

  Archive:              Via Gopher: University of Minnesota Gopher
                        Information About Gopher

  Address:              gopher-announce@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Administration:       gopher-announce-request@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Description:          A low-volume mailing list of announcements of
                        new software and servers.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 News groups:

  Name:                 comp.infosystems.gopher

  Description:          Discussion of all things gopher.

Top      ToC       Page 30 
  Archive:              Available via gopher client; connect to the
                        gopher server at gopher.tc.umn.edu port 70,
                        look in the "Information About Gopher" section.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Protocols:

  What is supported:    Internet Gopher

  What it runs over:    Anything you can run TCP/IP over.

  Other NIR tools this interworks with:

                        Z39.50 WAIS variant via WAIS gateway
                        FTP via FTP gateway
                        archie/Prospero via an archie gateway
                        veronica (an archie for gopherspace)
                        NNTP via NNTP gateway
                        Finger (subset of gopher)
                        X.500 via X.500 gateway
                        Z39.50 1992 revision variant via Z39.50 gateway
                        Oracle and Sybase SQL servers via SQL gateway
                        CSO (Ph/Qi) online phone books

  Future plans:         New user interace metaphor on PowerPC and
                        Pentium-based clients.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------

 Servers:

  Date completed or updated:    14 March, 1994
  By: Name:                     Mark McCahill
      Email address:            mpm@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Platform:                     UNIX.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         The Internet Gopher Development Team
  Email address:                gopher@micro.umn.edu
  Telephone:                    +1-612-625-1300

  Server software available from:
  Via Gopher:                   U of M Gopher
                                Information About Gopher
                                Gopher Software Distribution
  Via FTP:                      boombox.micro.umn.edu

Top      ToC       Page 31 
                                /pub/gopher/

  Location of more information:
   As above.

  Latest version number:        (things change fast;
                                 please check software distribution)

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:
   Server, index server for WAIS based indices and for NeXT
   native indexing, tools, gateway code.  Supports Gopher+.

  Approximate number of such servers in use:
   Over 3000.

  General comments:
   The defacto standard workhorse Gopher server.
   Paul Lindner is the architect and keeper of this server.

                         -------------------

  Date completed or updated:    14 March, 1994
  By: Name:                     Mark McCahill
      Email address:            mpm@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Platform:                     Macintosh.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         The Internet Gopher Development Team
  Email address:                gopher@micro.umn.edu
  Telephone:                    +1-612-625-1300

  Server software available from:
  Via Gopher:                   U of M Gopher
                                Information About Gopher
                                Gopher Software Distribution
  Via FTP:                      boombox.micro.umn.edu
                                /pub/gopher/

  Location of more information:
   As above.

  Latest version number:        (please check software distribution)

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:
                                Macintosh Gopher Server and tools,
                                supports Gopher+.

Top      ToC       Page 32 
  Approximate number of such servers in use:
                                Current estimates between 300 and 400.

  General comments:
   Runs on any Macintosh with 1MB memory or more.
   Requires MacTCP.  Can be configured to use Apple Computer's AppleSearch
   full-text search software as a Gopher-accessible search engine.

                         -------------------

  Date completed or updated:    14 March, 1994
  By: Name:                     Mark McCahill
      Email address:            mpm@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Platform:                     PC-DOS.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         The Internet Gopher Development Team
  Email address:                gopher@micro.umn.edu
  Telephone:                    +1-612-625-1300

  Additional contacts:
  Name:                         Dennis Sherman
  Email address:                Dennis_Sherman@unc.edu

  Name:                         Foteos Macrides
  Email address:                macrides@sci.wfeb.edu

  Server software available from:
  Via Gopher:                   U of M Gopher
                                Information About Gopher
                                Gopher Software Distribution
  Via FTP:                      boombox.micro.umn.edu
                                /pub/gopher/

  Location of more information:
   As above.

  Latest version number:        0.91b

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:
                                Basic Gopher server for PC-DOS boxes.

  Approximate number of such servers in use:
                                Current estimates between 25 and 75.

Top      ToC       Page 33 
  General comments:
   Written by Chris McNeil <cmcneil@mta.ca>, based on Phil Karns net
   package.  The U of M Gopher team forwards difficult problems to
   Chris.

                         -------------------

  Date completed or updated:    14 March, 1994
  By: Name:                     Mark McCahill
      Email address:            mpm@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Platform:                     VMS

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         J. Lance Wilkinson
  Email address:                jlw@psulias.psu.edu
  Telephone:                    +1-814-865-1818

  Server software available from:
  Via Gopher:                   U of M Gopher
                                Information About Gopher
                                Gopher Software Distribution
  Via FTP:                      boombox.micro.umn.edu
                                /pub/gopher/VMS/

  Location of more information:
   As above.

  Latest version number:        1.2 VMS-0

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:
   Basic VMS Server, shares some code with UNIX server.

  Approximate number of such servers in use:
   35-40 servers in use.

  General comments:
   The VMS server was written and is maintained by J. Lance Wilkinson,
   Foteos Macrides, Bruce Tanner and others on the
   VMSGopher-L@trln.lib.unc.edu mailing list.

                         -------------------

  Date completed or updated:    14 March, 1994
  By: Name:                     Mark McCahill
      Email address:            mpm@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Platform:                     VM/CMS

Top      ToC       Page 34 
  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         Rick Troth
  Email address:                TROTH@RICEVM1.RICE.EDU
  Telephone:

  Server software available from:
  Via Gopher:                   U of M Gopher
                                Information About Gopher
                                Gopher Software Distribution
  Via FTP:                      boombox.micro.umn.edu:/pub/gopher/
                                Brazos.IS.Rice.EDU:/pub/vmcms/

  Location of more information:
   As above.

  Latest version number:        2.4

  Brief Scope and Characteristics:
   Gopher server for IBM VM/CMS installations.

  Approximate number of such servers in use:
   Unknown.

  General comments:
   This server was written and is maintained by Rick Troth.
   This server is commonly referred to as the Rice VM/CMS server.
   There is also another VM/CMS server: the Vienna VM/CMS server.

                         -------------------

  Date completed or updated:    14 March, 1994
  By: Name:                     Mark McCahill
      Email address:            mpm@boombox.micro.umn.edu

  Platform:                     VM/CMS.

  Primary Contact:
  Name:                         Gerhard Gonter
  Email address:                Gerhard.Gonter@WU-Wien.ac.at
  Telephone:

  Server software available from:
  Via Gopher:                   U of M Gopher
                                Information About Gopher
                                Gopher Software Distribution
  Via FTP:                      boombox.micro.umn.edu:/pub/gopher/


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