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Versions: 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 rfc5226                         
INTERNET-DRAFT                                             Thomas Narten
<draft-narten-iana-considerations-rfc2434bis>    Harald Tveit Alvestrand
                                                      September 15, 2006

       Guidelines for Writing an IANA Considerations Section in RFCs


Status of this Memo

   By submitting this Internet-Draft, each author represents that any
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   have been or will be disclosed, and any of which he or she becomes
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   Many protocols make use of identifiers consisting of constants and
   other well-known values. Even after a protocol has been defined and
   deployment has begun, new values may need to be assigned (e.g., for a
   new option type in DHCP, or a new encryption or authentication
   transform for IPsec).  To ensure that such quantities have consistent
   values and interpretations in different implementations, their
   assignment must be administered by a central authority. For IETF
   protocols, that role is provided by the Internet Assigned Numbers
   Authority (IANA).

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   In order for IANA to manage a given name space prudently, it needs
   guidelines describing the conditions under which new values can be
   assigned, or when modifications to existing values can be made. If
   IANA is expected to play a role in the management of a name space,
   the IANA must be given clear and concise instructions describing that
   role.  This document discusses issues that should be considered in
   formulating a policy for assigning values to a name space and
   provides guidelines to document authors on the specific text that
   must be included in documents that place demands on IANA.

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   Status of this Memo..........................................    1

   1.  Introduction.............................................    4

   2.  Why Management of a Name Space May be Necessary..........    5

   3.  Designated Experts.......................................    5
      3.1.  The Motivation For Designated Experts...............    6
      3.2.  The Role of the Designated Expert...................    7
      3.3.  Designated Expert Reviews...........................    7

   4.  Creating A Registry......................................    9
      4.1.  Well-Known IANA Policy Definitions..................    9
      4.2.  What To Put In Documents That Create A Registry.....   12
      4.3.  Updating IANA Guidelines For Existing Registries....   13

   5.  Registering New Values In An Existing Registry...........   14
      5.1.  What to Put In Documents When Registering Values....   14
      5.2.  Updating Registrations..............................   15
      5.3.  Overriding Registration Procedures..................   15

   6.  Miscellaneous Issues.....................................   16
      6.1.  When There Are No IANA Actions......................   16
      6.2.  Appeals.............................................   17
      6.3.  Namespaces Lacking Documented Guidance..............   17
      6.4.  After-The-Fact Registrations........................   17
      6.5.  Reclaiming Assigned Values..........................   18

   7.  Mailing Lists............................................   18

   8.  Security Considerations..................................   19

   9.  Open Issues..............................................   19

   10.  Changes Relative to RFC 2434............................   19
      10.1.  Changes Relative to -00............................   20
      10.2.  Changes Relative to -02............................   20

   11.  IANA Considerations.....................................   21

   12.  Acknowledgments.........................................   21

   13.  Normative References....................................   21

   14.  Informative References..................................   21

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   15.  Authors' Addresses......................................   23

1.  Introduction

   Many protocols make use of fields that contain constants and other
   well-known values (e.g., the Protocol field in the IP header [IP] or
   MIME types in mail messages [MIME-REG]). Even after a protocol has
   been defined and deployment has begun, new values may need to be
   assigned (e.g., a new option type in DHCP [DHCP] or a new encryption
   or authentication transform for IPsec [IPSEC]).  To ensure that such
   fields have consistent values and interpretations in different
   implementations, their assignment must be administered by a central
   authority. For IETF protocols, that role is provided by the Internet
   Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) [IANA-MOU].

   In this document, we call the set of possible values for such a field
   a "name space"; its actual value may be a text string, a number or
   another kind of value. The binding or association of a specific value
   with a particular purpose within a name space is called an assigned
   number (or assigned value, or sometimes a "code point" or "protocol
   constant"). Each assignment of a value in a name space is called a

   In order for IANA to manage a given name space prudently, it needs
   guidelines describing the conditions under which new values should be
   assigned, or when (and how) modifications to existing values can be
   made. This document provides guidelines to authors on what sort of
   text should be added to their documents in order to provide IANA
   clear guidelines and reviews issues that should be considered in
   formulating an appropriate policy for assigning numbers to name

   Not all name spaces require centralized administration.  In some
   cases, it is possible to delegate a name space in such a way that
   further assignments can be made independently and with no further
   (central) coordination. In the Domain Name System, for example, the
   IANA only deals with assignments at the higher-levels, while
   subdomains are administered by the organization to which the space
   has been delegated. As another example, Object Identifiers (OIDs) as
   defined by the ITU are also delegated [ASSIGNED]; IANA manages the
   subtree rooted at "iso.org.dod.internet" ( .  When a name
   space is delegated, the scope of IANA is limited to the parts of the
   namespace where IANA has authority.

   This document uses the terms 'MUST', 'SHOULD' and 'MAY', and their
   negatives, in the way described in RFC 2119 [KEYWORDS]. In this case,
   "the specification" as used by RFC 2119 refers to the processing of

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   protocol documents within the IETF standards process.

2.  Why Management of a Name Space May be Necessary

   One issue to consider in managing a name space is its size. If the
   space is small and limited in size, assignments must be made
   carefully to prevent exhaustion of the space. If the space is
   essentially unlimited, on the other hand, potential exhaustion will
   probably not be a practical concern at all.  Even when the space is
   essentially unlimited, however, it is usually desirable to have at
   least a minimal review prior to assignment in order to:

    - prevent the hoarding of or unnecessary wasting of values. For
      example, if the space consists of text strings, it may be
      desirable to prevent entities from obtaining large sets of strings
      that correspond to desirable names (e.g., existing company names).

    - provide a sanity check that the request actually makes sense and
      is necessary. Experience has shown that some level of minimal
      review from a subject matter expert is useful to prevent
      assignments in cases where the request is malformed or not
      actually needed (i.e., an existing assignment for an essentially
      equivalent service already exists).

   A second consideration is whether it makes sense to delegate the name
   space in some manner. This route should be pursued when appropriate,
   as it lessens the burden on IANA for dealing with assignments.

   A third, and perhaps most important consideration, concerns potential
   impact on interoperability of unreviewed extensions. Proposed
   protocol extensions generally benefit from community review; indeed,
   review is often essential to avoid future interoperability problems

   In some cases, the name space is essentially unlimited and there are
   no potential interoperability issues; in such cases assigned numbers
   can safely be given out to anyone. When no subjective review is
   needed, IANA can make assignments directly, provided that IANA is
   given specific instructions on what types of requests it should
   grant, and what information must be provided as part of a well-formed
   request for an assigned number.

3.  Designated Experts

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3.1.  The Motivation For Designated Experts

   It should be noted that IANA does not create or define assignment
   policy itself; rather, it carries out policies that have been defined
   by others, i.e., in RFCs.  IANA must be given a set of guidelines
   that allow it to make allocation decisions with minimal subjectivity
   and without requiring any technical expertise with respect to the
   protocols that make use of a registry.

   In most cases, some review of prospective allocations is appropriate,
   and the question becomes who should perform the review and what is
   the purpose of the review.  In many cases, one might think that an
   IETF Working Group (WG) familiar with the name space at hand should
   be consulted. In practice, however, WGs eventually disband, so they
   cannot be considered a permanent evaluator. It is also possible for
   name spaces to be created through individual submission documents,
   for which no WG is ever formed.

   One way to ensure community review of prospective assignments is to
   have the requester submit a document for publication as an RFC. Such
   an action helps ensure that the specification is publicly and
   permanently available, and allows some review of the specification
   prior to publication and assignment of the requested code points.
   This is the preferred way of ensuring review, and is particularly
   important if any potential interoperability issues can arise. For
   example, some assignments are not just assignments, but also involve
   an element of protocol specification. A new option may define fields
   that need to be parsed and acted on, which (if specified poorly) may
   not fit cleanly with the architecture of other options or the base
   protocols on which they are built.

   In some cases, however, the burden of publishing an RFC in order to
   get an assignment is excessive. However, it is generally still useful
   (and sometimes necessary) to discuss proposed additions on a mailing
   list dedicated to the purpose (e.g., the ietf-types@iana.org for
   media types) or on a more general mailing list (e.g., that of a
   current or former IETF WG).  Such a mailing list provides a way for
   new registrations to be publicly reviewed prior to getting assigned,
   or to give advice to persons wanting help in understanding what a
   proper registration should contain.

   While discussion on a mailing list can provide valuable technical
   feedback, opinions may vary and discussions may continue for some
   time without clear resolution.  In addition, IANA cannot participate
   in all of these mailing lists and cannot determine if or when such
   discussions reach consensus.  Therefore, IANA relies on a "designated
   expert" to advise it in the specific question of whether an
   assignment should be made. The designated expert is a single

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   individual who is responsible for carrying out an appropriate
   evaluation and returning a recommendation to IANA.

   It should be noted that a key motivation for having designated
   experts is for the IETF to provide IANA with a single-person subject
   matter expert to whom the evaluation process can be delegated. IANA
   forwards requests for an assignment to the expert for evaluation, and
   the expert (after performing the evaluation) informs IANA whether or
   not to make the assignment.

3.2.  The Role of the Designated Expert

   The designated expert is responsible for initiating and coordinating
   as wide a review of an assignment request as appropriate to evaluate
   it properly. This may involve consultation with a set of technology
   experts, discussion on a public mailing list, or consultation with a
   working group (or its mailing list if the working group has
   disbanded), etc. Ideally, the designated expert follows specific
   review criteria as documented with the protocol that creates or uses
   the namespace. (See the IANA Considerations sections of
   [RFC3748,RFC3575] for examples that have been done for specific name

   Designated experts are expected to be able to defend their decisions
   to the IETF community and the evaluation process is not intended to
   be secretive or bestow unquestioned power on the expert. Experts are
   expected to apply applicable documented review or vetting procedures,
   or in the absence of documented criteria, follow generally-accepted
   norms, e.g., those in section 3.3.

   Section 5.2 discusses disputes and appeals in more detail.

   Designated experts are appointed by the IESG (normally upon
   recommendation by the relevant Area Director). They are typically
   named at the time a document creating or updating a name space is
   approved by the IESG, but as experts originally appointed may later
   become unavailable, the IESG will appoint replacements if necessary.

   Since the designated experts are appointed by the IESG, they may be
   removed by the IESG.

3.3.  Designated Expert Reviews

   In the eight years since RFC 2434 was published and has been put to
   use, experience has led to the following observations:

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    - a designated expert must respond in a timely fashion, normally
      within a week for simple requests to a few weeks for more complex
      ones. Unreasonable delays can cause significant problems for those
      needing assignments, such as when products need code points to
      ship. This is not to say that all reviews can be completed under a
      firm deadline, but they must be started, and the requester and
      IANA should have some transparency into the process if an answer
      cannot be given quickly.

    - if a designated expert does not respond to IANA's requests within
      a reasonable period of time, either with a response, or with a
      reasonable explanation for a delay (e.g., some requests may be
      particularly complex), and if this is a recurring event, IANA must
      raise the issue with the IESG.  Because of the problems caused by
      delayed evaluations and assignments, the IESG should take
      appropriate actions, such as ensuring that the expert understands
      and accepts their responsibilities, or appointing a new expert.

    - The designated expert is not required to personally bear the
      burden of evaluating and deciding all requests, but acts as a sort
      of shepherd for the request, enlisting the help of others as
      appropriate. In the case that a request is denied, and rejecting
      the request is likely to be controversial, the expert should have
      the support of other subject matter experts. That is, the expert
      must be able to defend a decision to the community as a whole.

   In the case where a designated expert is used, but there are no
   specific documented criteria for performing an evaluation, the
   presumption should be that a code point should be granted, unless
   there is a compelling reason not to. Possible reasons to deny a
   request include:

    - scarcity of codepoints, where the finite remaining codepoints
      should be prudently managed, or when a request for a large number
      of codepoints is made, when a single codepoint is the norm.

    - documentation is not of sufficient clarity to evaluate or ensure

    - the code point is needed for a protocol extension, but the
      extension is not consistent with the documented (or generally
      understood) architecture of the base protocol being extended, and
      would be harmful to the protocol if widely deployed. It is not the
      intent that "inconsistencies" refer to minor differences "of a
      personal preference nature;" instead, they refer to significant
      differences such as inconsistencies with the underlying security
      model, implying a change to the semantics of an existing message
      type or operation, requiring unwarranted changes in deployed

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      systems (compared with alternate ways of achieving a similar
      result), etc.

    - the extension would cause problems with existing deployed systems.

    - the extension would conflict with one under active development by
      the IETF, and having both would harm rather than foster

4.  Creating A Registry

   Creating a registry involves describing the name spaces to be
   created, an initial set of assignments (if appropriate) and
   guidelines on how future assignments are to be made.

4.1.  Well-Known IANA Policy Definitions

   The following are some defined policies, some of which are in use
   today. These cover a range of typical policies that have been used to
   date to describe the procedure for assigning new values in a name
   space. It is not required that documents use these terms; the actual
   requirement is that the instructions to IANA are clear and
   unambiguous. However, use of these terms is RECOMMENDED where
   possible, since their meaning is widely understood.

      Private Use - For private or local use only, with the type and
             purpose defined by the local site. No attempt is made to
             prevent multiple sites from using the same value in
             different (and incompatible) ways. There is no need for
             IANA to review such assignments (since IANA does not record
             them) and assignments are not generally useful for broad

             Examples: Site-specific options in DHCP [DHCP] have
             significance only within a single site.  "X-foo:" header
             lines in email messages.

      Experimental Use - Similar to private or local use only, with the
             purpose being to facilitate experimentation. See
             [EXPERIMENTATION] for details.

      Hierarchical allocation - Delegated managers can assign values
             provided they have been given control over that part of the
             name space.  IANA controls the higher levels of the
             namespace according to one of the other policies.

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             Examples: DNS names, Object Identifiers, IP addresses

      First Come First Served - Assignments are made to anyone on a
             first come, first served bases. There is no substantive
             review of the request, other than to ensure that it is
             well-formed and doesn't duplicate an existing assignment.
             However, requests must include a minimal amount of clerical
             information, such as a a point of contact and a brief
             description of what the value would be used for. Additional
             information specific to the type of value requested may
             also need to be provided, as defined by the name space. For
             numbers, the exact value is generally assigned by IANA;
             with names, specific text strings can usually be requested.

             Examples: vnd. (vendor assigned) MIME types [MIME-REG].

      Expert Review (or Designated Expert) - approval by a Designated
             Expert is required. The required documentation and review
             criteria to be used by the Designated Expert should be
             provided when defining the registry. For example, see
             Sections 6 and 7.2 in [RFC3748].

      Specification required - Values and their meaning must be
             documented in an RFC or other permanent and readily
             available public specification, in sufficient detail so
             that interoperability between independent implementations
             is possible. When used, Specification Required also implies
             usage of a Designated Expert, who will review the public
             specification and evaluate whether it is sufficiently clear
             to allow interoperable implementations. The intention
             behind "permanent and readily available" is that a document
             can be reasonably be expected to easily be found long after
             RFC publication.

             Examples: SCSP [SCSP]

      RFC Required - RFC publication (either as IETF Submission or as an
             RFC Editor submission [RFC3932]) suffices.

      IETF Review - (Formerly called "IETF Consensus" in [IANA-
             CONSIDERATIONS]) New values are assigned only through RFCs
             that have been shepherded through the IESG as AD-Sponsored
             IETF (or WG) Documents [RFC3932,RFC3978]. The intention is
             that the document and proposed assignment will be reviewed
             by the IESG and appropriate IETF WGs (or experts, if
             suitable working groups no longer exist) to ensure that the
             proposed assignment will not negatively impact
             interoperability or otherwise extend IETF protocols in an

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             inappropriate or damaging manner.

             To ensure adequate community review, such documents are
             shepherded through the IESG as AD-sponsored documents with
             an IETF Last Call.

             Examples: SMTP extensions [SMTP-EXT], BGP Subsequent
             Address Family Identifiers [BGP4-EXT].

      Standards Action - Values are assigned only for Standards Track
             RFCs approved by the IESG.

             Examples: MIME top level types [MIME-REG]

      IESG Approval - New assignments may be approved by the IESG.
             Although there is no requirement that the request be
             documented in an RFC, the IESG has discretion to request
             documents or other supporting materials on a case-by-case

             IESG Approval is not intended to be used often or as a
             "common case;" indeed, it has seldom been used in practice
             during the period RFC 2434 was in effect. Rather, it is
             intended to be available in conjunction with other policies
             as a fall-back mechanism in the case where one of the other
             allowable approval mechanisms cannot be employed in a
             timely fashion or for some other compelling reason. IESG
             Approval is not intended to circumvent the public review
             processes implied by other policies that could have been
             employed for a particular assignment.  IESG Approval would
             be appropriate, however, in cases where expediency is
             desired and there is strong consensus for making the
             assignment (e.g., WG consensus).

             The following guidelines are suggested for any evaluation
             under IESG Approval:

              - The IESG can (and should) reject a request if another
                path is available that is more appropriate and there is
                no compelling reason to bypass normal community review

              - before approving a request, the community should be
                consulted, via a "call for comments" that provides as
                much information as is reasonably possible about the

   It should be noted that it often makes sense to partition a name
   space into multiple categories, with assignments within each category

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   handled differently. For example, many protocols now partition name
   spaces into two (or even more) parts, where one range is reserved for
   Private or Experimental Use, while other ranges are reserved for
   globally unique assignments assigned following some review process.
   Dividing a name space into ranges makes it possible to have different
   policies in place for different ranges.

4.2.  What To Put In Documents That Create A Registry

   The previous sections presented some issues that should be considered
   in formulating a policy for assigning values in name spaces. It is
   the Working Group and/or document author's job to formulate an
   appropriate policy and specify it in the appropriate document. In
   almost all cases, having an explicit "IANA Considerations" section is
   appropriate. The following subsections define what is needed for the
   different types of IANA actions.

   Documents that create a new name space (or modify the definition of
   an existing space) and that expect IANA to play a role in maintaining
   that space (e.g., serving as a repository for registered values) MUST
   provide clear instructions on details of the name space. In
   particular, instructions MUST include:

     1) The name of the registry being created and/or maintained. The
        name will appear on the IANA web page and will be referred to in
        future documents that need to allocate a value from the new
        space. The full name (and abbreviation, if appropriate) should
        be provided. It is highly desirable that the chosen name not be
        easily confusable with the name of another registry.

     2) What information must be provided as part of a request in order
        to assign a new value.

     3) The review process that will apply to all future requests for a
        value from the namespace.

        Note: When a Designated Expert is used, documents MUST NOT name
        the Designated Expert in the document itself; instead, the name
        should be relayed to the appropriate IESG Area Director at the
        time the document is sent to the IESG for approval.

        If the request should also be reviewed on a specific public
        mailing list (such as the ietf-types@iana.org for media types),
        that mailing address should be specified. Note, however, that
        when mailing lists are specified, a Designated Expert MUST also
        be specified (see Section 3).

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        If IANA is expected to make assignments without requiring an
        outside review, sufficient guidance MUST be provided so that the
        requests can be evaluated with minimal subjectivity.

   When specifying the process for making future assignments, it is
   quite acceptable to pick one (ore more) of the example policies
   listed in Section 4.1 and refer to it by name.  Indeed, this is the
   preferred mechanism in those cases where the sample policies provide
   the desired level of review. It is also acceptable to cite one of the
   above policies and include additional guidelines for what kind of
   considerations should be taken into account by the review process.
   For example, RADIUS [RFC3575] specifies the use of a Designated
   Expert, but includes specific additional criteria the Designated
   Expert should follow.

   For example, a document could say something like:

        This document defines a new DHCP option, entitled "FooBar" (see
        Section y), assigned a value of TBD1 from the DCHP Option space
        [RFCXXX]. The FooBar option also defines an 8-bit FooType field,
        for which IANA is to create and maintain a registry entitled
        "FooType values". Initial values for the FooType registry are
        given below; future assignments are to be made through Expert
        Review [IANA-CONSIDERATIONS]. Assignments consist of a FooType
        name and its associated value.

            FooType Name        Value     Definition
            ----                -----     ----------
            Frobnitz            1           See Section y.1
            NitzFrob            2           See Section y.2

   For examples of documents that provide good and detailed guidance to
   IANA on the issue of assigning numbers, consult [MIME-LANG, RFC3757,
   RFC3749, RFC3575, RFC3968].

4.3.  Updating IANA Guidelines For Existing Registries

   Updating the registration process for an already existing (i.e.,
   previously created) name space (whether created explicitly or
   implicitly) follows a process similar to that used when creating a
   new namespace. That is, a document is produced that makes reference
   to the existing namespace and then provides detailed guidelines for
   handling assignments in each individual name space. Such documents
   are normally processed as BCPs [IETF-PROCESS].

   Example documents that updated the guidelines for managing (then)
   pre-existing registries include: [RFC2929,RFC3228,RFC3575].

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5.  Registering New Values In An Existing Registry

5.1.  What to Put In Documents When Registering Values

   Often, documents request an assignment from an already existing name
   space (i.e., one created by a previously-published RFC). In such
   cases documents should make clear:

    - From what name space is a value is being requested? It is helpful
      to use the exact name space name as listed on the IANA web page
      (and defining RFC), and cite the RFC where the name space is
      defined. (Note: There is no need to mention what the assignment
      policy for new assignments is, as that should be clear from the

    - For each value being requested, give it a unique reference. When
      the value is numeric, use the notation: TBD1, TBD2, etc. Through-
      out the document where an actual IANA-assigned value should be
      filled in, use the "TBDx" notation. This helps ensure that the
      final RFC has the correct assigned values inserted in in all of
      the relevant places where the value is expected to appear in the
      final document. For values that are text strings, a specific name
      can be suggested. IANA will normally assign the name, unless it
      conflicts with a name already in use.

    - Normally, the values to be used are chosen by IANA; documents
      shouldn't pick values themselves. However, in some cases a value
      may have been used for testing or in early implementations. In
      such cases, it is acceptable to include text suggesting what spe-
      cific value should be used (together with the reason for the
      choice). For example, one might include the text "the value XXX is
      suggested as it is used in implementations". However, it should be
      noted that suggested values are just that; IANA will attempt to
      assign them, but may find that impossible, if the proposed number
      has already been assigned for some other use.

      For some registries, IANA has a longstanding policy prohibiting
      assignment of names or codes on a vanity or organization name
      basis, e.g., codes are always assigned sequentially unless there
      is a strong reason for making an exception.  Nothing in this docu-
      ment is intended to change those policies or prevent their future

    - The IANA Considerations section should summarize all of the IANA
      actions, with pointers to the relevant sections elsewhere in the
      document as appropriate. When multiple values are requested, it is
      generally helpful to include a summary table.  It is also often

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      useful for this table to be in the format of a registry data as it
      should appear on the IANA web site

   As an example, the following text could be used to request assignment
   of a DHCPv6 option number:

      IANA has assigned an option code value of TBD1 to the DNS Recur-
      sive Name Server option and an option code value of TBD2 to the
      Domain Search List option from the DHCP option code space defined
      in section 24.3 of RFC 3315.

5.2.  Updating Registrations

   Registrations are a request for an assigned number, including the
   related information needed to evaluate and document the request. Even
   after a number has been assigned, some types of registrations contain
   additional information that may need to be updated over time. For
   example, MIME types, character sets, language tags, etc. typically
   include more information than just the registered value itself.
   Example information can include point of contact information,
   security issues, pointers to updates, literature references, etc.  In
   such cases, the document defining the namespace must clearly state
   who is responsible for maintaining and updating a registration. In
   different cases, it may be appropriate to specify one or more of the

      - Let the author update the registration, subject to the same
        constraints and review as with new registrations.

      - Allow some mechanism to attach comments to the registration, for
        cases where others have significant objections to claims in a
        registration, but the author does not agree to change the

      - Designate the IESG or another entity as having the right to
        change the registrant associated with a registration and any
        requirements or conditions on doing so. This is mainly to get
        around the problem when a registrant cannot be reached in order
        to make necessary updates.

5.3.  Overriding Registration Procedures

   Since RFC 2434 was published, experience has shown that the
   documented IANA considerations for individual protocols do not always
   adequately cover the reality on the ground. For example, many older

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   routing protocols do not have documented, detailed IANA
   considerations. In addition, documented IANA considerations are
   sometimes found to be too stringent to allow even working group
   documents (for which there is strong consensus) to obtain code points
   from IANA in advance of actual RFC publication.  In other cases, the
   documented procedures are unclear or neglected to cover all the
   cases. In order to allow assignments in individual cases where there
   is strong IETF consensus that an allocation should go forward, but
   the documented procedures do not support such an assignment, the IESG
   is granted authority to approve assignments in such cases. The
   intention is not to overrule properly documented procedures, or to
   obviate the need for protocols to properly document their IANA
   Considerations. Instead, the intention is to permit assignments in
   individual cases where it is obvious that the assignment should just
   be made, but updating the IANA process just to assign a particular
   code point is viewed as too heavy a burden.

   In general, the IETF would like to see deficient IANA registration
   procedures for a namespace revised through the IETF standards
   process, but not at the cost of unreasonable delay for needed
   assignments. If the IESG has had to take the action in this section,
   it is a strong indicator that the IANA registration procedures should
   be updated, possibly in parallel with ongoing protocol work.

6.  Miscellaneous Issues

6.1.  When There Are No IANA Actions

   Before an Internet-Draft can be published as an RFC, IANA needs to
   know what actions (if any) it needs to perform. Experience has shown
   that it is not always immediately obvious whether a document has no
   IANA actions, without reviewing a document in some detail. In order
   to make it clear to IANA that it has no actions to perform (and that
   the author has consciously made such a determination!), such
   documents should include an IANA Considerations section that states:

      This document has no IANA Actions.

   This statement, or an equivalent form of words, must only be inserted
   after the WG or individual submitter has carefully verified it to be
   true. Using such wording as a matter of "boilerplate" or without
   careful consideration can lead to incomplete or incorrect IANA
   actions being performed.

   If a specification makes use of values from a name space that is not
   managed by IANA, it may be useful to note this fact, e.g., with

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   wording such as:

      The values of the Foobar parameter are assigned by the Barfoo
      registry on behalf of the Rabfoo Forum. Therefore, this document
      has no IANA Actions.

   In some cases, the absence of IANA-assigned values may be considered
   valuable information for future readers; in other cases it may be
   considered of no value once the document has been approved, and may
   be removed before archival publication. This choice should be made
   clear in the draft, for example by including a sentence such as

        [RFC Editor: please remove this section prior to publication.]


        [RFC Editor: please do not remove this section.]

6.2.  Appeals

   Appeals on registration decisions made by IANA can be appealed using
   the normal IETF appeals process as described in  Section 6.5 of
   [IETF-PROCESS]. Specifically, appeals should be directed to the IESG,
   followed (if necessary) by an appeal to the IAB, etc.

6.3.  Namespaces Lacking Documented Guidance

   For all existing RFCs that either explicitly or implicitly rely on
   IANA to evaluate assignments without specifying a precise evaluation
   policy, IANA (in consultation with the IESG) will continue to decide
   what policy is appropriate. Changes to existing policies can always
   be initiated through the normal IETF consensus process.

   All future RFCs that either explicitly or implicitly rely on IANA to
   register or otherwise manage name space assignments MUST provide
   guidelines for managing the name space.

6.4.  After-The-Fact Registrations

   Occasionally, IANA becomes aware that an unassigned value from a
   managed name space is in use on the Internet, or that an assigned
   value is being used for a different purpose than originally
   registered. IANA will not condone such misuse, i.e., procedures of
   the type described in this document MUST be applied to such cases. In
   the absence of specifications to the contrary, values may only be

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   reassigned for a different purpose with the consent of the original
   assignee (when possible) and with due consideration of the impact of
   such a reassignment.

6.5.  Reclaiming Assigned Values

   Reclaiming previously-assigned values for reuse is tricky, because
   doing so can lead to interoperability problems with deployed systems
   still using the assigned values. Moreover, it can be extremely
   difficult to determine the extent of deployment of systems making use
   of a particular value.  However, in cases where the name space is
   running out of unassigned values and additional ones are needed, it
   may be desirable to attempt to reclaim unused values. When reclaiming
   unused values, the following (at a minimum) should be considered:

    - attempts should be made to contact the original party to which a
      value is assigned, to determine how widely used a value is. (In
      some cases, products were never shipped or have long ceased being
      used. In other cases, it may be known that a value was never
      actually used at all.)

    - reassignments should not normally be made without the concurrence
      of the original requester. Reclamation under such conditions
      should only take place where there is strong evidence that a value
      is not widely used, and the need to reclaim the value outweighs
      the cost of a hostile reclamation. In any case, IESG approval is
      needed in this case.

    - it may be appropriate to write up the proposed action and solicit
      comments from relevant user communities. In some cases, it may be
      appropriate to write an RFC that goes through a formal IETF
      process (including IETF Last Call) as was done when DHCP reclaimed
      some of its "Private Use" options [RFC3942]

7.  Mailing Lists

   All IETF mailing lists associated with evaluating or discussing
   assignment requests as described in this document are subject to
   whatever rules of conduct and methods of list management are
   currently defined by Best Current Practices or by IESG decision.

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8.  Security Considerations

   Information that creates or updates a registration needs to be
   authenticated and authorized. IANA updates registries according to
   instructions in published RFCs and from the IESG. It also may accept
   clarifications from document authors and relevant WG chairs.

   Information concerning possible security vulnerabilities of a
   protocol may change over time. Likewise, security vulnerabilities
   related to how an assigned number is used (e.g., if it identifies a
   protocol) may change as well. As new vulnerabilities are discovered,
   information about such vulnerabilities may need to be attached to
   existing registrations, so that users are not mislead as to the true
   security issues surrounding the use of a registered number.

   An analysis of security issues is required for all parameters (data
   types, operation codes, keywords, etc.) used in IETF protocols or
   registered by IANA. All descriptions of security issues must be as
   accurate as possible regardless of level of registration.  In
   particular, a statement that there are "no security issues associated
   with this type" must not given when it would be more accurate to
   state that "the security issues associated with this type have not
   been assessed".

9.  Open Issues

    - the security considerations section seems out of whack with
      reality and existing practice. Which registries actually talk
      about security implications? Is this a common thing to do? Should
      security issues be discussed in published RFCs instead?

    - Added text to "Specification Required" stating that an Expert will
      be used to evaluate a spec for adequate "implementability". Is
      this reasonable? [IANA can't do the evaluation, as they lack the
      necessary time/expertise. So someone has to do it...] Note:
      Consensus seems to be yes.

    - It would be good to get additional feedback on whether the
      examples of "good IANA Considerations" that are cited are actually
      good, or whether better ones are available.

10.  Changes Relative to RFC 2434

   Changes include:

    - Major reordering of text to group the "creation of registries"

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      text in same section, etc.

    - Numerous editorial changes to improve readability.

    - Change "IETF Consensus" term to "IETF Review" and added more
      clarifications. (History has shown that people see the words "IETF
      Consensus" and know what that means; in contrast, the term has a
      specific definition within this document.)

    - Added "RFC Required" to list of defined policies.

    - Much more explicit directions and examples of "what to put in

    - "Specification Required" now implies use of Designated Expert to
      evaluate specs for sufficient clarity.

    - Significantly changed the wording in Section 3. Main purpose is to
      make clear that Expert Reviewers are accountable to the community,
      and to provide some guidance for review criteria in the default

    - removed wording: "By virtue of the IAB's role as overseer of IANA
      administration [RFC 1602], the IAB's decision is final [IETF-
      PROCESS]." This document now makes no changes to existing appeal
      mechanisms relative to RFC 2026.

    - Added section about reclaiming unused value.

    - Added a section on after-the-fact registrations.

    - no doubt other things...

    [RFC Editor: please remove the "changes relative to individual
    drafts" below upon publication.]

10.1.  Changes Relative to -00

    - Revised Section 5.3 to try and make it even more clear.

10.2.  Changes Relative to -02

       - Significantly changed the wording in Section 3. Main purpose is
         to make clear the Expert Reviewers are accountable to the

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         community, and to provide some guidance for review criteria in
         the default case.

       - removed wording: "By virtue of the IAB's role as overseer of
         IANA administration [RFC 1602], the IAB's decision is final
         [IETF-PROCESS]." This document now makes no changes to existing
         appeal mechanisms relative to RFC 2026.

11.  IANA Considerations

   This document is all about IANA Considerations.

12.  Acknowledgments

   This document has benefited from specific feedback from Marcelo
   Bagnulo Braun, Brian Carpenter, Barbara Denny, Spencer Dawkins, Paul
   Hoffman, John Klensin, Allison Mankin, Mark Townsley and Bert Wijnen.

   The original acknowledgments section in RFC 2434 was:

   Jon Postel and Joyce Reynolds provided a detailed explanation on what
   IANA needs in order to manage assignments efficiently, and patiently
   provided comments on multiple versions of this document. Brian
   Carpenter provided helpful comments on earlier versions of the
   document. One paragraph in the Security Considerations section was
   borrowed from [MIME-REG].

13.  Normative References

14.  Informative References

   [ASSIGNED] Reynolds, J., and J. Postel, "Assigned Numbers", STD 2,
                    RFC 1700, October 1994.  See also:

   [BGP4-EXT] Bates. T., Chandra, R., Katz, D. and Y.  Rekhter,
                    "Multiprotocol Extensions for BGP-4", RFC 2283,
                    February 1998.

   [DHCP-OPTIONS] Alexander, S. and R. Droms, "DHCP Options and BOOTP
                    Vendor Extensions", RFC 2132, March 1997.

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   [EXPERIMENTATION] "Assigning Experimental and Testing Numbers
                    Considered Useful". T.  Narten, RFC 3692, January

   [IANA-CONSIDERATIONS] Alvestrand, H. and T. Narten, "Guidelines for
                    Writing an IANA Considerations Section in RFCs", BCP
                    26, RFC 2434, October 1998.

   [IANA-MOU] Memorandum of Understanding Concerning the Technical Work
                    of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority. B.
                    Carpenter, F. Baker, M.  Roberts, RFC 2860, June

   [IETF-PROCESS] Bradner, S., "The Internet Standards Process --
                    Revision 3", BCP 9, RFC 2026, October 1996.

   [IP] Postel, J., "Internet Protocol", STD 5, RFC 791, September 1981.

   [IPSEC] Atkinson, R., "Security Architecture for the Internet
                    Protocol", RFC 1825, August 1995.

   [KEYWORDS] Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
                    Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.

   [MIME-LANG] Freed, N. and K. Moore, "MIME Parameter Value and Encoded
                    Word Extensions: Character Sets, Languages, and
                    Continuations", RFC 2184, August 1997.

   [MIME-REG] Freed, N., Klensin, J. and J. Postel, "Multipurpose
                    Internet Mail Extension (MIME) Part Four:
                    Registration Procedures", RFC 2048, November 1996.

   [SCSP] Luciani, J., Armitage, G. and J. Halpern, "Server Cache
                    Synchronization Protocol (SCSP)", RFC 2334, April

   [SMTP-EXT] Klensin, J., Freed, N., Rose, M., Stefferud, E.  and D.
                    Crocker, "SMTP Service Extensions", RFC 1869,
                    November 1995.

   [PROTOCOL-EXT] "Procedures for protocol extensions and variations",

   [RFC2929] Domain Name System (DNS) IANA Considerations. D. Eastlake
                    3rd, E.  Brunner-Williams, B. Manning. September

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   [RFC3228] IANA Considerations for IPv4 Internet Group Management
                    Protocol (IGMP). B. Fenner. February 2002.

   [RFC3575] IANA Considerations for RADIUS (Remote Authentication Dial
                    In User Service). B. Aboba. RFC 3575, July 2003.

   [RFC3748] Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP), B. Aboba, L.
                    Blunk, J.  Vollbrecht, J. Carlson, H. Levkowetz,
                    Ed., RFC 3748, June, 2004.

   [RFC3978] IETF Rights in Contributions. S. Bradner, Ed.. March 2005.

   [RFC3575] IANA Considerations for RADIUS (Remote Authentication Dial
                    In User Service). B. Aboba. July 2003.

   [RFC3748] Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP). B. Aboba, L.
                    Blunk, J.  Vollbrecht, J. Carlson, H. Levkowetz,
                    Ed.. June 2004.

   [RFC3932] The IESG and RFC Editor Documents: Procedures. H.
                    Alvestrand.  October 2004.

   [RFC3942] "Reclassifying Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol version
                    4 (DHCPv4) Options", B. Volz. RFC 3942, November

   [RFC3968] "The Internet Assigned Number Authority (IANA) Header Field
                    Parameter Registry for the Session Initiation
                    Protocol (SIP)," G. Camarillo. RFC 3968, December

15.  Authors' Addresses

   Thomas Narten
   IBM Corporation
   3039 Cornwallis Ave.
   PO Box 12195 - BRQA/502
   Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2195

   Phone: 919-254-7798
   EMail: narten@us.ibm.com

   Harald Tveit Alvestrand

   Email: Harald@Alvestrand.no

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Copyright Statement

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   This document is subject to the rights, licenses and restrictions
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   This document and the information contained herein are provided on an

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