Browse Prior Art Database

The MultiProtocol Internet (RFC1560) Disclosure Number: IPCOM000002394D
Original Publication Date: 1993-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2000-Sep-12
Document File: 6 page(s) / 16K

Publishing Venue

Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)

Related People

B. Leiner: AUTHOR [+2]


This document was prepared by the authors on behalf of the Internet Architecture Board (IAB). It is offered by the IAB to stimulate discussion.

This text was extracted from a ASCII Text document.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 19% of the total text.

Network Working Group B. Leiner

Request for Comments: 1560 USRA

Category: Informational Y. Rekhter


December 1993

The MultiProtocol Internet

Status of this Memo

This memo provides information for the Internet community. This memo

does not specify an Internet standard of any kind. Distribution of

this memo is unlimited.


This document was prepared by the authors on behalf of the Internet

Architecture Board (IAB). It is offered by the IAB to stimulate


There has recently been considerable discussion on two topics:

MultiProtocol approaches in the Internet and the selection of a next

generation Internet Protocol. This document suggests a strawman

position for goals and approaches for the IETF/IESG/IAB in these

areas. It takes the view that these two topics are related, and

proposes directions for the IETF/IESG/IAB to pursue.

In particular, it recommends that the IETF/IESG/IAB should continue

to be a force for consensus on a single protocol suite and internet

layer protocol. The IETF/IESG/IAB should:

- maintain its focus on the TCP/IP protocol suite,

- work to select a single next-generation internet protocol and

develop mechanisms to aid in transition from the current IPv4,


- continue to explore mechanisms to interoperate and share

resources with other protocol suites within the Internet.

1. Introduction

The major purpose of the Internet is to enable ubiquitous

communication services between endpoints. In a very real way, the

Internet IS inter-enterprise networking. Therefore, the issue of

multiprotocol Internet is not just the issue of multiple network

layers, but the issue of multiple comparable services implemented

over different protocols.

The issue of multiprotocol Internet is multidimensional and should be

analyzed with respect to two simultaneous principles:

- It is desirable to have a single protocol stack. The community

should try to avoid unconstrained proliferation of various

protocol stacks.

- In reality there will always be more than one protocol stack.

Presence of multiple network layers is just one of the

corollaries of this observation, as even within a single

protocol stack, forces of evolution of that stack will lead

to periods of multiple protocols. We need to develop

mechanisms that maximize the services that can be provided

across all the protocol stacks (multiprotocol Internet).

2. Background and Context

2.1. The MultiProtocol Evolutionary Process

In an IAB architectural retreat held in 1991 [Cla91], a dynamic view

of the process of multiprotocol integration and accommodation was