Comments on RCTE from the Tenex Implementation Experience (RFC0718)
Original Publication Date: 1976-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2019-Feb-15
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
Network Working Group Jon Postel (SRI-ARC) Request For Comments: 718 Jun 1976 NIC #35874
The following memo was a page of a document describing changes in version 1.34 of the Tenex system. I believe that the author is Ray Tomlinson or someone else in the BBN-RCC Tenex group. In any case Ray has agreed that these comments should be circulated to the to the network community, rather than to only the Tenex community.
Comments on RCTE from the TENEX Implementation Experience
The code to implement the RCTE option of the new TELNET protocol for TENEX has been completed. The RCTE option permits a reduction in network traffic by deferring the transmission of characters which will not cause the receiving user program to be activated until a character which will cause the user program to be activated. A further reduction is achieved by minimizing the flow of echo characters back to the user TELNET program. This is done by having the server instruct the user TELNET to echo the group of characters up through the next wakeup character. By sending this command as the user program is about to read the first character of that group, the echo is guaranteed to follow any response to the preceding group of characters.
Significant problems with the RCTE protocol were encountered. The handling of spontaneous output was specified in a way that made the implementation extremely difficult to do correctly (if, indeed, a correct implementation is possible). The solution here was to completely isolate the control of input transmission and echoing from the characters flowing in the output stream. Synchronization of input and output then occurs directly by virtue of the embedding of control information in the output stream. This approach permits a simplified coding of both the user TELNET and server TELNET.
A second problem was the handling of interrupt characters. The RCTE protocol fails to provide an explicit mechanism for...