Current Meeting Report

2.1.9 Voice Profile for Internet Mail (vpim)

In addition to this official charter maintained by the IETF Secretariat, there is additional information about this working group on the Web at: -- Additional VPIM Web Page
NOTE: This charter is a snapshot of the 54th IETF Meeting in Yokohama, Japan. It may now be out-of-date.

Last Modifield: 05/08/2002

John Noerenberg <>
G Parsons <>
Applications Area Director(s):
Ned Freed <>
P. Faltstrom <>
Applications Area Advisor:
Ned Freed <>
Mailing Lists:
General Discussion:
To Subscribe:
In Body: subscribe vpim
Description of Working Group:
The Voice Profile for Internet Mail (VPIM) Version 2 is currently a Proposed Standard (RFC 2421) Applicability Statement. It is an application of Internet Mail originally intended for sending voice messages between voice messaging systems. As such, VPIM imposes several restrictions on the message and transport to support the characteristics of voice messaging. Many voice mail vendors have implemented systems according to RFC 2421 and are in the process of deploying these systems around the world. Most vendors have completed (or are currently involved in) interoperability testing of VPIM products and have posted their results on the VPIM website. This working group will promote the advancement of VPIM v2 on the standards track.

Several minor problems with VPIM v2 have been identified during the development and testing of products. These problems can easily be fixed with minor clarifications to the protocol. A revised VPIM v2 (and related protocols as necessary) will be produced to reflect these clarifications. No protocol changes will be introduced in this update.

Though VPIM uses Internet Mail, its restrictions can be inconvenient when sending and receiving messages from traditional desktop email clients. As a result, there is interest in loosening the restrictions of VPIM in a new version and make it the voice component of a unified messaging protocol suite. This would make it easier for desktop clients to send, receive, and forward voice messages while maintaining support for the characteristics of a voice message.

The primary goal of Version 3 is to support interoperability with deployed desktop email clients. A secondary goal is to specify interoperability with Version 2. The result is that the semantics of a voice or fax message within an email message can be interpreted at as many clients as possible.

An initial proposal for VPIM v3 (also known as Internet Voice Mail (IVM)) is currently documented in several Internet Drafts (see draft-ema-vpimv3-*): VPIM v3 Goals, VPIM v3 Unified Messaging (Primary Content), VPIM Addressing and VPIM v3 Specification. As well, several supporting protocol extensions may need to be worked in this group or in collaboration with other groups. These are: IMAP voice extensions, voice directory profiles, content negotiation details for voice and partial non-delivery notifications.

The working group will initially focus on agreement of the goals and then define a set of protocol documents to address the media, addressing, and handling semantics. Finally, VPIM v2 - v3 Interworking will be documented separately if needed.


The voice mail vendors and several email vendors have been meeting in the VPIM work group at the Electronic Messaging Association (EMA) for several years. This team produced VPIM v1 (RFC 1911) and VPIM v2 (RFC 2421). This group meets three times a year in between IETF meetings and is regularly attended by core VPIM proponents. As a result, there is benefit to using this venue as an interim meeting.

In addition, the work of this group is related to similar work by the Internet Fax WG. It is intended that Version 3 will use at least the Simple Mode of Internet Fax.

As well, other IETF WGs may be interested in proposed voice extensions to protocols. There may be value in collaborating on some work items.

Goals and Milestones:
Done  Document interworking VPIM v2 implementations
Done  Issue updated drafts of IVM/VPIM v3 Goals, IVM/VPIM v3 Specification and related protocol documents as Internet Drafts
Done  WG last call on VPIM v3 Goals as Informational RFC
Done  Issue updated Internet Drafts of VPIM directory
Done  Issue updated VPIM v2 Internet Draft
Done  Issue updated Internet Drafts of VPIM addressing
Done  Issue updated Internet Drafts of VPIM IMAP extensions
Done  Issue revised VPIM v3 Specification and related protocol documents as Internet Drafts
Done  WG last call on IVM Specification and related protocol documents as Proposed Standards RFCs
Done  Submit VPIM addressing to IESG for consideration as a Proposed Standard
Done  Submit IVM Goals to IESG for consideration as Informational RFC
Done  WG last call on revised VPIM v2 for Draft Standard
Done  Submit IVM et al to IESG for consideration as a Proposed Standard
Done  WG last call on VPIM client extensions as Standards Track RFC
Done  Submit VPIM v2 to IESG for consideration as a Draft Standard RFC
Done  Submit VPIM IMAP client extensions to IESG for consideration as Standards Track RFC
Done  WG last call on VPIM addressing as Standards Track RFC
Done  WG last call on VPIM directory profile as Standards Track RFC
Done  Submit VPIM addressing to IESG for consideration as Standards Track RFC
Done  Submit VPIM directory to IESG for consideration as Standards Track RFC
Done  WG last call on IVM/VPIM v3 content negotiation as Proposed Standard RFC
Done  Submit VPIM content negotiation to IESG for consideration as Proposed Standard RFC
Done  Review final work items and close
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-vpimv2r2-05.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-ivm-04.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-routing-03.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-vpimdir-03.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-hint-08.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-cc-07.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-address-03.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-vpimv2r2-32k-03.txt
  • - draft-ietf-vpim-vpimv2r2-dur-03.txt
  • No Request For Comments

    Current Meeting Report

    VPIM WG meeting, 54rd IETF, Yokohama, Japan

    Chair: Glenn Parsons <>
    Scribe: Greg White <>

    The VPIM WG met during the second half of a joint session. The first of the session was occupied by the Internet Fax WG.

    Glenn presented the agenda, which was accepted by the group. He then discussed the revised milestones. He also made note of the fact that the EMA (Electronic Messaging Association) is now called Open Group Messaging Forum. They will be responsible for conducting interoperability testing. At the last meeting in Minneapolis, an Avaya representative said that they could coordinate an interop event, but now this has been postponed until this fall.

    Voice Profile for Internet Mail v2:

    VPIM v2 - drafts are in the RFC Editor's queue waiting for the DSN/MDN references to clear. These drafts are the following:

    Voice Profile for Internet Mail - version 2
    Toll Quality Voice - 32 kbit/s ADPCM MIME Sub-type Registration
    Content Duration MIME Header Definition

    DSN/MDN references status - Greg V. presented the following:

    DSN: an expanded implementation report was submitted on 6/5/02. There are no known outstanding issues, and the current IESG status is "Under Discussion." The drafts in question are the following:

    SMTP Service Extension for Delivery Status Notifications
    The Multipart/Report Content Type for the Reporting of Mail System
    Administrative Messages
    Enhanced Mail System Status Codes
    An Extensible Message Format for Delivery Status Notifications

    MDN: no known outstanding issues, and the current IESG status is "AD Review." The draft is question is the following:

    Message Disposition Notification <draft-vaudreuil-mdnbis-03.txt>

    Patrik Faltstrom noted that the mdnbis document was not listed for review in the request he saw.

    VPIM (Voice Profile for Internet Mail) Addressing <draft-ietf-vpim-address-03.txt> - the spec is finished, has been through IESG review, and been sent to the AD for final review. Waiting for Ned Freed to send it to the RFC Editor.

    Voice Messaging Directory Service <draft-ietf-vpim-vpimdir-03.txt> - performed substantial cleanup to the spec, no known outstanding issues. The spec needs one more pass with the LDAP Directorate, and one more editing pass before it is sent to IESG for review.

    Voice Message Routing Service <draft-ietf-vpim-routing-03.txt> - waiting for the ENUM WG to stabilize the service specification syntax. It was suggested that WG Last Call be done on this spec in parallel with resolving the LDAP & ENUM issues. There was some dissention in the group to this suggestion, and a need was professed for a "this is subject to change" statement regarding the syntax. Rich Shockey said that the ENUM WG will modify 2916bis to generalize the syntax, and that there is not much change. They are trying to get 2916bis out as soon as possible for the ITU Study Group 2 meeting in September.

    Internet Voice Messaging:

    Goals for Internet Voice Mail <draft-ietf-vpim-ivm-goals-03.txt> - waiting for the rest of the other IVM documents to clear, so that all of the documents can be published as a group.

    Internet Voice Messaging <draft-ietf-vpim-ivm-04.txt> - spec was updated to use Audio/Basic as the only codec. WG Last Call ends August 5.

    Critical Content MIME Parameter <draft-ietf-vpim-cc-07.txt> - IESG review noted a clash with RFC 3204. The document has been revised, and is now awaiting IESG clearance. Eric Burger said that an IESG representative noted some serious issues with the spec, but this representative could not remember those issues. Patrik looked through Ned's notes to determine the issues, but could not find them.

    Message Context for Internet Mail <draft-ietf-vpim-hint-08.txt> - spec is in the RFC Editor's queue (number 32 behind specs from March 2002).

    VPIM Addenda:

    IMAP Extensions status - no one present was able to discuss these items. Patrik noted that the specs needs better Security Considerations sections, and that people would like to see more security pointers to the baseline IMAP spec. Pete Resnick noted that these drafts are not IMAPEXT WG work items. These drafts are:

    IMAP4 Binary Content Extension <draft-nerenberg-imap-binary-06.txt>
    IMAP4 Channel Transport Mechanism <draft-nerenberg-imap-channel-02.txt>

    Calling Line Identification for Voice Mail Messages <draft-ema-vpim-clid-03.txt> - WG Last Call was finished May 2002, and the spec is in IESG review. There has been no IETF Last Call yet, we are waiting for Ned's review.

    Voice Messaging Client Behaviour <draft-ema-vpim-cb-02.txt> - IETF Last Call is complete, and the spec is in the RFC Editor's queue.

    Simple Notification and Alarm Protocol (SNAP) <draft-shapira-snap-04.txt> - changes from -03 include removing attachment support, adding a predefined non-standard port for SNAP, added total new message counter, added total new urgent message counter, added mailbox name (folder name), and fixed some typos.

    It was noted that the IANA work (new port number and MIME type) needed to be finished, then the spec could be submitted for WG Last Call. Greg V. said that the new port number would not be assigned until the RFC is published. He also thinks we should skip WG Last Call, because this spec is not a WG item, and we should send it straight to IETF Last Call. Glenn replied that we should do WG Last Call because that is what we have been doing with other VPIM Addenda items. It was decided that the spec would go to WG Last Call after the next revision. Patrik has asked Ned to send the status of all the VPIM WG specs to Greg V., and Glenn will also send a request to Ned listing all of the specs. Patrik also suggested that document status requests should go out before the IETF, not during it.


    Glenn advertised the BOF coming up on Thursday. The focus will be on client message submission and retrieval profiles, specifically looking at IMAP extensions. The BOF will also focus on different kinds of clients. Greg V. requested a status update of the aforementioned IMAP drafts before the BOF. Patrik said that he feels the IMAP Binary spec is essentially done, but no one was sure of the IMAP Channel spec status. Glenn is to ping the author on the status.

    It was also decided that the VPIM and IFAX WG's would continue to meet during the same time slot during future IETF's.


    VPIM Issues
    Smart Notification and Alarm Protocol