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imcdonal at imcdonal at
Tue Aug 11 14:56:27 EDT 1998

>From pmp-owner at Tue Aug 11 19:42:22 1998
Date: Tue, 11 Aug 1998 10:11:02 PDT
From: imcdonal at (Ira Mcdonald x10962)
Message-Id: <9808111711.AA01187 at snorkel>
To: ipp at, kugler at
Subject: PMP> Re: IPP> Draft Standard MIB rules from IESG
Cc: pmp at
Sender: pmp-owner at

Hi Carl,                                        Tuesday (11 August 1998)

The new I-D updates (NOT replaces) the IETF Internet Standards Process
(RFC 2026, S.  Bradner, October 1996) which states the two implementations
requirement on page 3:

   In general, an Internet Standard is a specification that is stable
   and well-understood, is technically competent, has multiple,
   independent, and interoperable implementations with substantial
   operational experience, enjoys significant public support, and is
   recognizably useful in some or all parts of the Internet.

And on page 13:

4.1.2  Draft Standard

   A specification from which at least two independent and interoperable
   implementations from different code bases have been developed, and
   for which sufficient successful operational experience has been
   obtained, may be elevated to the "Draft Standard" level.  For the
   purposes of this section, "interoperable" means to be functionally
   equivalent or interchangeable components of the system or process in
   which they are used.  If patented or otherwise controlled technology
   is required for implementation, the separate implementations must
   also have resulted from separate exercise of the licensing process.
   Elevation to Draft Standard is a major advance in status, indicating
   a strong belief that the specification is mature and will be useful.

   The requirement for at least two independent and interoperable
   implementations applies to all of the options and features of the
   specification.  In cases in which one or more options or features
   have not been demonstrated in at least two interoperable
   implementations, the specification may advance to the Draft Standard
   level only if those options or features are removed.

The key phrase is "operational experience".  In all of the Internet
standards process BCPs (Best Current Practices), the term "operational"
means "in live networks".

Also, standards which reach the Draft Standard status are NOT supposed
to be volatile (ie, subject to future change).  Draft Standard status
is meant to be a short holding period before Internet (Final) Standard
status is granted.  This is why I have long argued (unsuccessfully) that
the new Printer MIB text should NOT be advanced to Draft Standard status
without widespread implementation by software and hardware vendors.

If we put something in the Draft Standard Printer MIB we later regret,
it must be kept forever for backwards compatibility.  There is NO
precedent for a Draft Standard MIB ever making a change that breaks
backwards compatibility.  The PWG doesn't get a vote on this one.

- Ira McDonald (High North Inc)

>[Carl's note]
>Date: Tue, 11 Aug 1998 08:20:42 PDT
>From: "Carl Kugler" <kugler at>
>Subject: Re: IPP> Draft Standard MIB rules from IESG
>To: ipp at
>> For the revised Printer MIB to advance to a Draft Standard status, it
>> must be proven that there are two such interoperable implementations in
>> existence (product quality, not merely prototypes) of every object in
>> the new Printer MIB draft text (including new objects recently added).
>Where does it say the implementations have to be products, not not prototypes?

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