Internet Engineering Task Force Internet Routing Protocol Standardization Criteria (RFC1264)
Original Publication Date: 1991-Oct-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2000-Sep-12
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
The IAB and the IESG have evolved a three-stage Internet standardization process. This process is explained in the "IAB Official Protocol Standards", published as an RFC several times a year (the current version is RFC 1250).
Network Working Group R. Hinden
Request for Comments: 1264 BBN
Internet Engineering Task Force
Internet Routing Protocol Standardization Criteria
Status of this Memo
This informational RFC presents procedures for creating and
documenting Internet standards on routing protocols. These
procedures have been established by the Internet Activities Board
(IAB) in consultation with the Internet Engineering Steering Group
(IESG). Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
The IAB and the IESG have evolved a three-stage Internet
standardization process. This process is explained in the "IAB
Official Protocol Standards", published as an RFC several times a
year (the current version is RFC 1250).
In brief, the three stages of Internet standardization are Proposed
(which requires a well written, openly reviewed specification), Draft
(which requires Proposed status, multiple implementations and some
operational experience), and full Internet Standard (which requires
Draft status and more extensive operational experience). The IAB and
IESG are currently developing a more detailed explanation of the
process, which will be available as an RFC.
The purpose of this document is to provide more specific guidance for
the advancement of routing protocols. All levels of the
standardization process are covered.
There are currently two types of routing protocol in the Internet.
These are Interior Gateway Protocols (IGP) sometimes called Intra-
Domain Routing Protocols and Exterior Gateway Protocols (EGP)
sometimes called Inter-Domain Routing Protocols. This document uses
the terms IGP and EGP.
The motivation for these requirements two-fold. The first is to
reduce the risk that there will be serious technical problems with a
routing protocol after it reaches Draft Standard. The second is to
insure that the new routing protocol will support the continued
growth of the Internet.
Routing protocols are complex, widely distributed, real-time
algorithms. They are difficult to implement and to test. Even
though a protocol may work in one environment with one
implementation, that does not ensure that it will work in a different
environment with multiple vendors. A routing protocol may work well
within a range of topologies and number of networks and routers, but
may fail when an unforeseen limit is reached. The result is that
even with considerable operational experience, it is hard to
guarantee that the protocol is mature enough for widespread
The Internet is currently growing at an exponential rate. Routing
protocols and the management of internet addressing are key elements
in the successful operation the Internet. It is important that new
routing protocols be ...