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Report from the IAB Workshop on Stack Evolution in a Middlebox Internet (SEMI) (RFC7663) Disclosure Number: IPCOM000245004D
Original Publication Date: 2015-Oct-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2016-Feb-05
Document File: 26 page(s) / 31K

Publishing Venue

Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)

Related People

B. Trammell: AUTHOR [+4]


The transport layer of the Internet has become ossified, squeezed between narrow interfaces (from BSD sockets to pseudo-transport over HTTPS) and increasing in-network modification of traffic by middleboxes that make assumptions about the protocols running through them. This ossification makes it difficult to innovate in the transport layer, through the deployment of new protocols or the extension of existing ones. At the same time, emerging applications require functionality that existing protocols can provide only inefficiently, if at all.

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Internet Architecture Board (IAB)                       B. Trammell, Ed. Request for Comments: 7663                            M. Kuehlewind, Ed. Category: Informational                                       ETH Zurich ISSN: 2070-1721                                             October 2015

                       Report from the IAB Workshop            on Stack Evolution in a Middlebox Internet (SEMI)


   The Internet Architecture Board (IAB) through its IP Stack Evolution

   program, the Internet Society, and the Swiss Federal Institute of

   Technology (ETH) Zurich hosted the Stack Evolution in a Middlebox

   Internet (SEMI) workshop in Zurich on 26-27 January 2015 to explore

   the ability to evolve the transport layer in the presence of

   middlebox- and interface-related ossification of the stack.  The goal

   of the workshop was to produce architectural and engineering guidance

   on future work to break the logjam, focusing on incrementally

   deployable approaches with clear incentives to deployment both on the

   endpoints (in new transport layers and applications) as well as on

   middleboxes (run by network operators).  This document summarizes the

   contributions to the workshop and provides an overview of the

   discussion at the workshop, as well as the outcomes and next steps

   identified by the workshop.  The views and positions documented in

   this report are those of the workshop participants and do not

   necessarily reflect IAB views and positions.

Status of This Memo

   This document is not an Internet Standards Track specification; it is    published for informational purposes.

   This document is a product of the Internet Architecture Board (IAB)    and represents information that the IAB has deemed valuable to    provide for permanent record.  It represents the consensus of the    Internet Architecture Board (IAB).  Documents approved for    publication by the IAB are not a candidate for any level of Internet    Standard; see Section 2 of RFC 5741.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,    and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at

 Trammell & Kuehlewind         Informational                     [Page 1]
 RFC 7663                      SEMI Workshop                 October 2015

 Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2015 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the    document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal    Provisions Relating to IETF Documents    ( in effect on the date of    publication of this document.  Please re...