The CCSO Nameserver (Ph) Architecture (RFC2378)
Original Publication Date: 1998-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2019-Feb-15
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
R. Hedberg: AUTHOR [+1]
The Ph Nameserver from the Computing and Communications Services Office (CCSO), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has for some time now been used by several organizations as their choice of publicly available database for information about people as well as other things. This document provides a formal definition of the client-server protocol. This memo provides information for the Internet community. It does not specify an Internet standard of any kind.
Network Working Group R. Hedberg Request for Comments: 2378 Umea University Category: Informational P. Pomes QUALCOMM, Inc. September 1998
The CCSO Nameserver (Ph) Architecture
Status of this Memo
This memo provides information for the Internet community. It does not specify an Internet standard of any kind. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
Copyright (C) The Internet Society (1998). All Rights Reserved.
The Ph Nameserver from the Computing and Communications Services Office (CCSO), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has for some time now been used by several organizations as their choice of publicly available database for information about people as well as other things. This document provides a formal definition of the client-server protocol. The Ph service as specified in this document is built around an information model, a client command language and the server responses.
1.1. Basic Information Model
At its simplest the Ph database can be thought of as a computer- resident "phone book". However, it can be used to collect arbitrary information about people, and in response to a query about an object named in the database, return information about that entity. It is in short a nameserver for people and objects. It was designed to keep a relatively small amount of arbitrary information about a relatively large number of people or things, and provide access to that information over the Internet. In order to structure the information the manager of the database has to decide which views to present of the real-world objects that are to be represented in the database. Each view is then composed of a number of fields and their values. To support this concept Ph has the notion of named information, i.e., categorizing information into what are called fields and assigning descriptive names to those fields.
Hedberg & Pomes Informational [Page 1]
RFC 2378 The CCSO Nameserver (Ph) Architecture September 1998
Even if the database resides and is reachable from the Internet it is local in the meaning that no server is supposed to be able to refer a client to another server which might hold the wanted information. However a server may contain a list of other Nameservers which can be used by clients to query other Nameservers for information.
A field descriptor is associated with each field and is used to describe the type and behavior of the field. A field descriptor includes the fieldname, the maximum length of information the field can store before truncation, keywords describing the properties of the field as well as free text describing what kind of information the field is supposed to hold.
The keywords can be any of the following:
Always: Forces the field’s contents to be always printed in addition to whatever fields specified by the query.
Any: This field is always searched by queries. To be most use ful, a field marked as Any should also have the Indexed and Lookup keywords as well....