Domain requirements (RFC0920)
Original Publication Date: 1984-Oct-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2000-Oct-06
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
J. Postel: AUTHOR [+2]
This memo restates and refines the requirements on establishing a Domain first described in RFC-881 . It adds considerable detail to that discussion, and introduces the limited set of top level domains.
Network Working Group J. Postel
Request for Comments: 920 J. Reynolds
Status of this Memo
This memo is a policy statement on the requirements of establishing a
new domain in the ARPA-Internet and the DARPA research community.
This is an official policy statement of the IAB and the DARPA.
Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
This memo restates and refines the requirements on establishing a
Domain first described in RFC-881 . It adds considerable detail
to that discussion, and introduces the limited set of top level
The Purpose of Domains
Domains are administrative entities. The purpose and expected use of
domains is to divide the name management required of a central
administration and assign it to sub-administrations. There are no
geographical, topological, or technological constraints on a domain.
The hosts in a domain need not have common hardware or software, nor
even common protocols. Most of the requirements and limitations on
domains are designed to ensure responsible administration.
The domain system is a tree-structured global name space that has a
few top level domains. The top level domains are subdivided into
second level domains. The second level domains may be subdivided
into third level domains, and so on.
The administration of a domain requires controlling the assignment of
names within that domain and providing access to the names and name
related information (such as addresses) to users both inside and
outside the domain.
RFC 920 October 1984
General Purpose Domains
While the initial domain name "ARPA" arises from the history of the
development of this system and environment, in the future most of the
top level names will be very general categories like "government",
"education", or "commercial". The motivation is to provide an
organization name that is free of undesirable semantics.
After a short period of initial experimentation, all current
ARPA-Internet hosts will select some domain other than ARPA for their
future use. The use of ARPA as a top level domain will eventually
Initial Set of Top Level Domains
The initial top level domain names are:
ARPA = The current ARPA-Internet hosts.