Introduction to the STD Notes (RFC1311)
Original Publication Date: 1992-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2000-Sep-12
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
The STDs are a subseries of notes within the RFC series that are the Internet standards. The intent is to identify clearly for the Internet community those RFCs which document Internet standards.
Network Working Group Internet Activities Board
Request for Comments: 1311 J. Postel, Editor
Introduction to the STD Notes
Status of this Memo
This RFC describes a new sub-series of RFCs, called STDs (Standards).
Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
The STDs are a subseries of notes within the RFC series that are the
Internet standards. The intent is to identify clearly for the
Internet community those RFCs which document Internet standards.
2. The Assignment of STD Numbers
There is a need to be very clear about which specifications have
completed the full process of standardization in the Internet. To do
this an STD number will be assigned to a specification when it
reaches the Standard maturity level. Note that specifications may be
either Technical Specifications (TS) or Applicability Statements
When a specification reaches the final stage of the standardization
process and the IAB has designated it a standard for the Internet, an
STD number will be assigned to that specification.
The existing standards have been assigned STD numbers (see Appendix).
The standard for a particular protocol will always have the same STD
If at some future time a protocol is reworked and a new document
is produced as the specification of that standard and the new
specification is designated by the IAB as a standard for the
Internet, then the new document will be labeled with the same STD
number (of course, that new document will have a new RFC number).
Multiple Documents for One Standard:
A STD number identifies a standard not a document. A document is
identified by its RFC number. If the specification of a standard
is spread over several documents they will each carry the same STD
For example, the Domain Name System (DNS) is currently
specified by the combination of RFCs 1034 and 1035. Both of
these documents are now labeled STD-13.
To be completely clear the DNS "Concepts and Facilities"
document can be referenced as "STD-13/RFC-1034".
In such cases, whenever possible, the set of documents defining a
particular standard will cross reference each other.
One Standard or Multiple Standards:
One difficult decision is deciding whether a set of documents
describe one standard or multiple standards. In the Appendix, one
can see that there are several cases in which one STD applies to
multiple RFCs (see STDs 5, 13, and 20). There is one case in
which a family of specifications has multiple STD numbers; that is
the Telnet Options.
The general rule is that a separate STD number is used when the
specification is logically separable. That is, logically
separable options are assigned distinct STD numbers w...