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Versions: 00 01 02 03                                                   
Network Working Group                                           K. Drage
Internet-Draft                                            Alcatel-Lucent
Expires: January 3, 2009                                    July 2, 2008

A Process for Handling Essential Corrections to the Session  Initiation
                             Protocol (SIP)

Status of this Memo

   By submitting this Internet-Draft, each author represents that any
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   The Session Initial Protocol (SIP) defined in RFC 3261 and a large
   number of extensions forms a considerable body of work, which through
   sheer size has a number of errors that require correction.  This
   document explains the process for managing essential corrections to

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1.  Introduction

   RFC 3261 [RFC3261] and its extensions have already had a number of
   issues identified against it, and other issues are expected.  These
   are issues where the normative text of the already published
   specification is found to be either in error, or lacking, such that
   interoperability is endangered.

   There has been a reluctance to document these issues for a number of
   reasons.  A revision could either replace or update an existing RFC.
   A replacement for an existing RFC would normally occur when there is
   a need to progress from proposed standard to draft standard, and will
   encompass substantially more work than merely documenting the
   identified error.  An update to an RFC still requires a whole new RFC
   to be issued.  This may be appear too complex for a one line
   correction, or may just overwhelm potential submitters due to the
   complexity of the process.

   There is also a need to control the number of updating RFCs that
   exist for any one specification.  A situation where an RFC has 10 or
   20 update RFCs clearly means that an implementor will miss at least
   one of these documents.  Therefore the target is to have the SIP RFC
   or SIP extension RFC originally produced by the working group, and a
   single RFC that updates that document.  Any subsequent RFC will
   therefore need to replace the any existing RFC that updates the
   original RFC.

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2.  Objective

   For SIP RFCs and RFCs specifying SIP extensions, provide clear
   guidelines as to when corrective RFC content is required that updates
   the original specification.  If the work is an extension or of
   editorial nature, then existing rules should be followed.

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3.  Process

   Corrections will be proposed to the SIP working group.

   All changes should be essential.  An essential change is one where in
   the absence of the correction, it will not be possible to implement
   the specification contained in the original RFC in a manner to ensure
   interoperability or correct operation.  Clarifications, statements of
   best practice, additional informative material, and editorial
   revisions are in general not essential; if publication of such
   material is necessary, it should be published as a separate
   informational RFC.  The working group will analyse the proposed
   correction and decide whether it is essential.

   The correction will be processed as an internet-draft belonging to
   the SIP working group.  For management purposes, there may be one
   correction or more corrections per internet draft.  The underlying
   principle for splitting essential corrections into different internet
   drafts is one of envisaged amount of working group time to process a
   correction.  A correction where the solution is likely to be
   contentious should be submitted as a separate internet draft to one
   where the solution is likely to be readily accepted, unless one is
   dependent on the other.  An informal naming technique will be used to
   assist in readily identifying these drafts; the appearance of "- fix"
   as the last part of the filename before the version number will be
   expected to indicate such a draft.

   When complete the internet draft will be working group last called by
   the SIP working group, along with any required expert review that may
   be appropriate to the contents.

   At an appropriate period in time, an editor working on behalf of the
   SIP working group will compile all changes to the original RFC that
   have successfully completed working group last call into a internet
   draft, along with the contents of all previous RFC that update the
   SIP RFC requiring correction.

   The internet draft will be submitted to IESG as a proposed standards
   track RFC for approval for publication, without any further working
   group last call.  This RFC will update the original SIP RFC or SIP
   extension RFC, and replace any previous update RFCs for that original

   Further corrections after this point will repeat the process.

   A web page will be maintained by the SIP WG chairs and the
   corrections editor giving the current status of corrections in
   progress.  This is currently at:

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4.  Required Contents For a Change Request Internet-Draft

   In addition to the normal rules for contents of a standards track
   RFC, sections to the RFC should document the following (probably as
   separate sections or subsections):

   Reason for change.  Text which explains why the change is necessary.
   This should be focussed on identifying why the text in the existing
   RFC is incorrect.

   Summary of change.  Enter text which describes the most important
   components of the change. i.e. how the change is made.

   Consequences if not approved.  Enter here the consequences if this
   change were to be rejected.  Explain the issues that implementations
   will have in the absence of this change, i.e. what fails to operate
   correctly.  This text should be drafted such that the working group
   can make a decision as to whether the change is essential or not.

   The change.  Provide only the normative changes outside the context
   of the sections of the corrected RFC.  This section is for those
   implementors who want to understand the normative changes at an
   immediate view.

   OPEN ISSUE: The above element has been inserted at the request of
   participants at IETF#69.  The above element requires further study,
   both in the format it should take, and what occurs if after
   publication, it is found to differ from the next element.  Should one
   element take precedence over the other, or do we sort it out at the
   next reissue of the change RFC.

   The change in detail.  Clearly identify the section of the RFC to be
   changed, and show precisely how the text changes.  An implementor
   should be able to take the original RFC and edit the change as
   described to obtain the new approved text.

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5.  Security considerations

   There are no security considerations relating to this document.

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6.  IANA considerations

   This document requires no action by IANA.

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7.  References

   [RFC3261]  Rosenberg, J., "SIP: Session Initiation Protocol",
              June 2002.

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Author's Address

   Keith Drage
   Quadrant, StoneHill Green, Westlea
   Swindon, Wilts

   Email: drage@alcatel-lucent.com

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