Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) R. Sparks Request for Comments: 7842 Oracle Category: Informational April 2016 ISSN: 2070-1721 Requirements for Improvements to the IETF Email List Archiving, Web-Based Browsing, and Search Tool Abstract The web-based IETF email archive search tool based on the requirements captured in RFC 6778 was deployed in January 2014. This memo captures the requirements for a set of improvements that have been identified during its initial years of community use. Status of This Memo This document is not an Internet Standards Track specification; it is published for informational purposes. This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). It represents the consensus of the IETF community. It has received public review and has been approved for publication by the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG). Not all documents approved by the IESG are a candidate for any level of Internet Standard; see Section 2 of RFC 5741. Information about the current status of this document, any errata, and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc7842. Copyright Notice Copyright (c) 2016 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the document authors. All rights reserved. This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal Provisions Relating to IETF Documents (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of publication of this document. Please review these documents carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect to this document. Code Components extracted from this document must include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as described in the Simplified BSD License.
2.2. Navigation from the Message List View This effort will add navigation to the message list view, whether viewing flat search results or viewing by thread, making it simple to: o Navigate to the previous/next message by date in the set of listed messages. o Navigate to the previous/next message in a thread, to the first message in a thread, and to the previous/next thread displayed. o Navigate to any References or Replies (displayed as Follow-Ups in MHonArc) for the currently selected message. These are derived from the References header field in the displayed message, and the In-Reply-To header field or the last value in the References header field of all other messages in the archive). The UI will make it possible to hide these navigation elements. 2.3. Navigation from a Single Message Currently, when viewing a single message, the only option for navigating to related messages is to return to the message list view (either by date or by thread). This is implemented with a new search based only on the details present in the message itself. No information about any search that led to the message is retained. This effort will: o Add navigation to the single message view, enabling transition to previous/next in list and previous/next in thread. o Add navigation enabling transition to previous/next in search, if the message page being displayed was arrived at by navigating from the message list view of a search result. o Add navigation to any References or Replies (displayed as Follow- Ups in MHonArc). These are derived from the References header field in the displayed message, and the In-Reply-To header field or the last value in the References header field of all other messages in the archive. o Make it possible to hide these navigation elements.
2.4. Message List UI It is not sufficiently obvious that the message list panel can be resized. The current handle is not visually distinct enough to signal the capability to the user, leaving many users believing they are restricted to the very short default list, even when viewing on large monitors. Additionally, there is a flaw in the code that fetches additional messages when scrolling to the bottom of what's currently displayed. If the message window is large enough that the default number of results does not fill it, no scrollbar appears, and scrolling to the bottom does not fetch additional results. The filter by list and filter by from sections to the left of the message list have no values in many circumstances, but it is not obvious why they are missing. One notable condition is when the search result is very large -- computing the values to put in these filters becomes prohibitively expensive. Without foreknowledge of the decisions captured in the code, the behavior seems arbitrary and unintuitive. The current view truncates fields, leaving trailing ellipses, when it doesn't need to. This leaves space underutilized on large displays and may make selection (particularly of long email addresses in the filters) much more difficult than it should be. On small displays, the column of filters dominates the display, leaving only a small amount of space for the actual message content. The current view requires the user to select each message in the message list to get the URI to that message. This makes it difficult to open several messages in different windows, or to build a list of URIs for use in a message or other applications. It is also not obvious that double-clicking a row in the list will open the message in a separate window. This effort will: o Make the ability to resize the panels on the message list display easier to find. o Account for the size of the message list panel when choosing how many messages to fetch, filling the panel whenever there are enough results to do so. o Provide a message explaining any condition leading to filter values not being populated (such as "Refine search to enable 'From' filtering").
2.8. Administration This project will: o Add a link from the message view to the admin page for the message when logged in as an administrator. o Add correction of the appropriate thread indices to the handling of administrative imports of messages. o Implement a redirection handler mapping legacy archive URLs to the appropriate mailarch page. o Make the underlying template consistent across all views presented by the tool. In particular, ensure that the correct logo as designated by the IETF Administrative Oversight Committee (IAOC) appears consistently on all views. 3. Security Considerations The requirements for improvement to the mailarch tool captured in this document do not introduce any exceptional security considerations. They add additional navigation points, and the implementers should consider the impact of rapid navigation using these new mechanisms (see the security considerations of [RFC6778]). 4. References 4.1. Normative References [RFC6778] Sparks, R., "Requirements for Archiving IETF Email Lists and for Providing Web-Based Browsing and Searching", RFC 6778, DOI 10.17487/RFC6778, October 2012, <http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc6778>. 4.2. Informative References [mailarch] IETF, "Mail Archive", <https://mailarchive.ietf.org>. Acknowledgments The following people have provided particularly useful input for this document: Lou Berger, Chris Bowers, Brian Carpenter, Russ Housley, Pete Resnick, and Dale Worley.
Author's Address Robert Sparks Oracle 7460 Warren Parkway Suite 300 Frisco, Texas 75034 United States Email: email@example.com