PMP Mail Archive: PMP> Actual rules on Proposed to Draft transition

PMP Mail Archive: PMP> Actual rules on Proposed to Draft transition

PMP> Actual rules on Proposed to Draft transition

Ira Mcdonald x10962 (
Thu, 3 Apr 1997 20:08:20 PST

Hi PWG folks,

The requirement for two independent AND interoperable implementations is
ONLY for the transition from Draft Standard to [Official] Standard, per
the excerpt from Internet Official Protocol Standard (RFC 2000), below.
Nonetheless, the best practice is considered to be a proof that BOTH
independent AND interoperable implementations exist BEFORE advancing
from Proposed Standard to Draft Standard.

- Ira McDonald (outside consultant at Xerox)

RFC 2000 Internet Standards February 1997

1. The Standardization Process

The Internet Architecture Board maintains this list of documents that
define standards for the Internet protocol suite. See RFC-1601 for
the charter of the IAB and RFC-1160 for an explanation of the role
and organization of the IAB and its subsidiary groups, the Internet
Engineering Task Force (IETF) and the Internet Research Task Force
(IRTF). Each of these groups has a steering group called the IESG
and IRSG, respectively. The IETF develops these standards with the
goal of co-ordinating the evolution of the Internet protocols; this
co-ordination has become quite important as the Internet protocols
> are increasingly in general commercial use. The definitive
> description of the Internet standards process is found in RFC-1602.

The majority of Internet protocol development and standardization
activity takes place in the working groups of the IETF.

Protocols which are to become standards in the Internet go through a
series of states or maturity levels (proposed standard, draft
standard, and standard) involving increasing amounts of scrutiny and
testing. When a protocol completes this process it is assigned a STD
> number (see RFC-1311). At each step, the Internet Engineering
> Steering Group (IESG) of the IETF must make a recommendation for
> advancement of the protocol.

To allow time for the Internet community to consider and react to
standardization proposals, a minimum delay of 6 months before a
proposed standard can be advanced to a draft standard and 4 months
before a draft standard can be promoted to standard.

> It is general practice that no proposed standard can be promoted to
> draft standard without at least two independent implementations (and
> the recommendation of the IESG). Promotion from draft standard to
> standard generally requires operational experience and demonstrated
> interoperability of two or more implementations (and the
> recommendation of the IESG).

In cases where there is uncertainty as to the proper decision
concerning a protocol a special review committee may be appointed
consisting of experts from the IETF, IRTF and the IAB with the
purpose of recommending an explicit action.

Advancement of a protocol to proposed standard is an important step
since it marks a protocol as a candidate for eventual standardization
(it puts the protocol "on the standards track"). Advancement to
draft standard is a major step which warns the community that, unless
major objections are raised or flaws are discovered, the protocol is
likely to be advanced to standard in six months.