Shepherd writeup

As required by RFC 4858, this is the current template for the Document 
Shepherd Write-Up. Changes are expected over time. 

This version is dated 1 November 2019.

(1) What type of RFC is being requested (BCP, Proposed Standard, Internet Standard, Informational, Experimental, or Historic)? Why is this the proper type of RFC? Is this type of RFC indicated in the title page header? 

Proposed Standard; this obsoletes a previous standards-track document RFC 7230. This status is indicated in the document and Datatracker.

(2) The IESG approval announcement includes a Document Announcement Write-Up. Please provide such a Document Announcement Write-Up. Recent examples can be found in the "Action" announcements for approved documents. The approval announcement contains the following sections: 

Technical Summary:

This document is the newest revision of the RFCs that describe HTTP/1.1, the last revision of which was made in 2014. This document represents only the parts of HTTP that are specific to the 1.1 version, while the related semantics document covers the version-independent aspects of HTTP.

Working Group Summary & Document Quality:

The working group, led by the group of three editors, has poured a lot of time and effort into ensuring that these core documents are produced with great quality and clarity. This effort to revise the documents began in 2018, and over the past three years, the working group has spent about half of its meeting time discussing the ongoing work on these core documents. A detailed list of all issues that were discussed can be found on the GitHub repo:

The messaging document in particular, as it primarily describes a long-existing version of the protocol, was more straightforward than the semantics document for WG discussion.


Document Shepherd: Tommy Pauly
Responsible Area Director: Francesca Palombini

I’ve reviewed this document as part of issuing the WGLC, and followed the various comments/issues filed by the WG and discussed in our recent interim meeting. I believe this document is quite ready to be forwarded, and is a truly useful and well-written specification.

(4) Does the document Shepherd have any concerns about the depth or breadth of the reviews that have been performed? 

No concerns. This document has been the product of careful and in-depth by the working group over several years, and went through a long last call.

(5) Do portions of the document need review from a particular or from broader perspective, e.g., security, operational complexity, AAA, DNS, DHCP, XML, or internationalization? If so, describe the review that took place. 

No new reviews are needed here, in my opinion. This document isn’t introducing any new behavior or architecture, but rather consolidating and clarifying existing documents.

(6) Describe any specific concerns or issues that the Document Shepherd has with this document that the Responsible Area Director and/or the IESG should be aware of? For example, perhaps he or she is uncomfortable with certain parts of the document, or has concerns whether there really is a need for it. In any event, if the WG has discussed those issues and has indicated that it still wishes to advance the document, detail those concerns here. 

No concerns.

(7) Has each author confirmed that any and all appropriate IPR disclosures required for full conformance with the provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79 have already been filed. If not, explain why?

The editors have not indicated any IPR on this document.

(8) Has an IPR disclosure been filed that references this document? If so, summarize any WG discussion and conclusion regarding the IPR disclosures. 

No IPR has been reported.

(9) How solid is the WG consensus behind this document? Does it represent the strong concurrence of a few individuals, with others being silent, or does the WG as a whole understand and agree with it? 

The WG consensus seems quite solid. During WGLC, we received in-depth reviews from core participants, as well as many GitHub issues from WG participants. From when WGLC started until now, we received 54 issues on the HTTP core documents from people other than document editors.

(10) Has anyone threatened an appeal or otherwise indicated extreme discontent? If so, please summarise the areas of conflict in separate email messages to the Responsible Area Director. (It should be in a separate email because this questionnaire is publicly available.) 

No such complaints have been expressed.

(11) Identify any ID nits the Document Shepherd has found in this document. (See and the Internet-Drafts Checklist). Boilerplate checks are not enough; this check needs to be thorough. 

  == There is 1 instance of lines with non-ascii characters in the document.

This is part of an address.

  -- The draft header indicates that this document obsoletes RFC7230, but the
     abstract doesn't seem to directly say this.  It does mention RFC7230
     though, so this could be OK.

This is OK, as the abstract does explain the obsoletion.

  == Unused Reference: 'RFC7231' is defined on line 2032, but no explicit
     reference was found in the text

This reference could likely be removed, or added along with 7230.

  ** Downref: Normative reference to an Informational RFC: RFC 1950

  ** Downref: Normative reference to an Informational RFC: RFC 1951

  ** Downref: Normative reference to an Informational RFC: RFC 1952

  -- Possible downref: Non-RFC (?) normative reference: ref. 'USASCII'

  -- Possible downref: Non-RFC (?) normative reference: ref. 'Welch'

  -- Obsolete informational reference (is this intentional?): RFC 2068
     (Obsoleted by RFC 2616)

  -- Duplicate reference: RFC7230, mentioned in 'RFC7230', was also mentioned
     in 'Err4667'.

Recommend that the AD follows up with these downrefs.

(12) Describe how the document meets any required formal review criteria, such as the MIB Doctor, YANG Doctor, media type, and URI type reviews. 

This document updates the reference for existing media types, but does not create any new registrations.

(13) Have all references within this document been identified as either normative or informative? 


(14) Are there normative references to documents that are not ready for advancement or are otherwise in an unclear state? If such normative references exist, what is the plan for their completion? 

These are highlighted by the nits checks:

  ** Downref: Normative reference to an Informational RFC: RFC 1950

  ** Downref: Normative reference to an Informational RFC: RFC 1951

  ** Downref: Normative reference to an Informational RFC: RFC 1952

  -- Possible downref: Non-RFC (?) normative reference: ref. 'USASCII'

  -- Possible downref: Non-RFC (?) normative reference: ref. 'Welch'

(15) Are there downward normative references references (see RFC 3967)? If so, list these downward references to support the Area Director in the Last Call procedure. 

Please see (14) above.

(16) Will publication of this document change the status of any existing RFCs? Are those RFCs listed on the title page header, listed in the abstract, and discussed in the introduction? If the RFCs are not listed in the Abstract and Introduction, explain why, and point to the part of the document where the relationship of this document to the other RFCs is discussed. If this information is not in the document, explain why the WG considers it unnecessary. 

Yes, this document obsoletes portions of RFC 7230. This is described clearly in the document.

(17) Describe the Document Shepherd's review of the IANA considerations section, especially with regard to its consistency with the body of the document. Confirm that all protocol extensions that the document makes are associated with the appropriate reservations in IANA registries. Confirm that any referenced IANA registries have been clearly identified. Confirm that newly created IANA registries include a detailed specification of the initial contents for the registry, that allocations procedures for future registrations are defined, and a reasonable name for the new registry has been suggested (see RFC 8126). 

The IANA requests for this document are primarily to move references in existing tables to point to this document, along with filling out some information from the semantics document.

(18) List any new IANA registries that require Expert Review for future allocations. Provide any public guidance that the IESG would find useful in selecting the IANA Experts for these new registries. 


(19) Describe reviews and automated checks performed by the Document Shepherd to validate sections of the document written in a formal language, such as XML code, BNF rules, MIB definitions, YANG modules, etc.

This document uses ABNF rules, which have been validated.

(20) If the document contains a YANG module, has the module been checked with any of the recommended validation tools ( for syntax and formatting validation? If there are any resulting errors or warnings, what is the justification for not fixing them at this time? Does the YANG module comply with the Network Management Datastore Architecture (NMDA) as specified in RFC8342?

No YANG impact.