Critical Content Multi-purpose Internet Mail Extensions (MIME) Parameter

Eric Burger


This document describes the use of a mechanism for identifying body parts that a sender deems critical in a multi-part Internet mail message. The mechanism described is a parameter to Content-Disposition, as described by RFC 3204. By knowing what parts of a message the sender deems critical, a content gateway can intelligently handle multi-part messages when providing gateway services to systems of lesser capability. Critical content can help a content gateway to decide what parts to forward. It can indicate how hard a gateway should try to deliver a body part. It can help the gateway to pick body parts that are safe to silently delete when a system of lesser capability receives a message. In addition, critical content can help the gateway chose the notification strategy for the receiving system. Likewise, if the sender expects the destination to do some processing on a body part, critical content allows the sender to mark body parts that the receiver must process.


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