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Versions: 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08                                    
INTERNET-DRAFT                                      J. Reynolds, Editor
draft-rfc-editor-rfc2223bis-07.txt                    R. Braden, Editor
Obsoletes: 2223                                              RFC Editor
Category: Informational                                  26 August 2003
Expires: February 2004

           Instructions to Request for Comments (RFC) Authors

Status of this Memo

   This document is an Internet-Draft and is in full conformance with
   all provisions of Section 10 of RFC2026.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF), its areas, and its working groups.  Note that
   other groups may also distribute working documents as Internet-

   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
   and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   The list of current Internet-Drafts can be accessed at

   The list of Internet-Draft Shadow Directories can be accessed at

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2003).  All Rights Reserved.


   This memo provides information for authors of Request for Comments
   (RFC) documents.  It summarizes RFC editorial policies and formatting
   requirements, addresses frequently-asked questions, and serves as a
   model for constructing a properly formatted RFC.

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Table of Contents

   1. Introduction ..................................................  3
      1.1 Background on the RFC Document Series .....................  3
      1.2 Introduction to the RFC Publication Process ...............  4
   2.  General RFC Editorial Policies ...............................  7
      2.1 Immutability ..............................................  7
      2.2 Not all RFCs are Standards ................................  8
      2.3 Publication Language ......................................  8
      2.4 Publication Format(s) .....................................  8
      2.5 Consistent Document Style .................................  9
      2.6 Assignment of RFC Numbers ................................. 10
      2.7 References and Citations .................................. 10
      2.8 URLs in RFCs .............................................. 11
      2.9 Titles .................................................... 11
      2.10 IANA Considerations ...................................... 12
      2.11 Relation to Other RFCs ................................... 12
      2.12 Authors Listed on RFCs ................................... 13
      2.13 April 1 RFCs ............................................. 14
      2.14 Requirement-Level Words .................................. 15
      2.15 Formal Languages in RFCs ................................. 15
      2.16 Intellectual Property .................................... 15
   3. General Format Rules for RFCs ................................. 16
      3.1 General Formatting Rules .................................. 17
      3.2 PostScript Format Rules ................................... 20
      3.3 Header and Footer Formats ................................. 20
      3.4 Protocol Data Definitions ................................. 21
   4. Sections in an RFC ............................................ 22
   5. RFC Information and Contacts .................................. 29
   6. Security Considerations ....................................... 29
   7. Acknowledgments ............................................... 29
   Appendix A - RFC Boilerplate ..................................... 30
   Appendix B - RFC Preparation Tools ............................... 31
   Appendix C - Checklist ........................................... 32
   Appendix D - Changes from RFC 2223 ............................... 34
   Normative References ............................................. 35
   Informative References ........................................... 36
   CHANGES (To be removed by RFC Editor before publication) ......... 37
   Authors' Addresses ............................................... 39

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1.  Introduction

   This memo provides information for authors of Request for Comments
   (RFC) documents.  It summarizes RFC editorial policies and formatting
   requirements, addresses frequently-asked questions, and serves as a
   model for constructing a properly formatted RFC.

   1.1 Background on the RFC Document Series

      The Requests for Comments documents, commonly known as RFCs, form
      an archival series of more than 3500 memos about computer
      communication and packet switching networks.  Included prominently
      in the RFC series are the official technical specifications of the
      Internet protocol suite; these are defined by the Internet
      Engineering Task Force (IETF) under the direction of the Internet
      Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  As a result, RFC publication
      plays a significant role in the Internet standards process

      The RFC series was begun in 1969 as a set of technical and
      organizational notes by the ARPAnet research community.  Since the
      early 1980s, the series has focused on the development of the
      Internet and the TCP/IP protocol suite.  Memos in the RFC series
      discuss many aspects of networking, including protocols,
      procedures, programs, and concepts as well as meeting notes,
      opinions, and sometimes humor.  For more information on the
      history of the RFC series, see RFC 2555, "30 Years of RFCs"

      RFCs are numbered (roughly) consecutively, and these numbers
      provide a single unique label space for all RFCs.  RFCs are
      published on-line through a number of repositories (see [RFCed]),
      and there is an online index of RFCs.

      Each RFC is labeled with a category: Standards Track, Best Current
      Practice, Experimental, Informational, or Historic.

           Note on terminology: The Category attribute of an RFC has
           sometimes been called its status, but the term "status" has
           been overloaded.  In the early years, it was used to mean the
           "requirement level" of a specification, e.g., "Required" or
           "Elective" (see, for example, RFC2400.)  Later this single
           status attribute proved too simplistic, so it was replaced by
           more general Applicability Statements [RFC2026].  Still
           later, we began to refer to the "category" as the "status"
           (see e.g., the wording for the Standards Track Status of this
           Memo, shown in Appendix A).  However, this attribute has
           always appeared on RFCs as the Category (see Section 4.1.)

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      RFCs in the Standards Track category are published on behalf of
      the IESG.  The IESG assigns a maturity level -- Proposed Standard,
      Draft Standard, or Standard -- to each Standards Track RFC.  The
      current maturity levels of all Standards Track RFCs are specified
      in STD 1, "Official Internet Protocol Standards" [STD1] and in the
      RFC index; they are not specified on the RFCs themselves.

      In addition to the master RFC index, there are secondary indexes
      for useful subsets or "sub-series" of the RFCs.  Three sub-series
      are in use:

      o    STD document -- Category is Standards Track, maturity level
           is Standard [STD92].

      o    BCP document -- Category is Best Current Practice [BCP95]

      o    FYI document (For Your Information) -- Category is
           Informational [FYI90]

      An RFC in a sub-series is labeled with its sub-series number as
      well as its RFC number.

      The RFC series is published by the RFC Editor, under funding
      provided by the Internet Society (ISOC) and under the supervision
      of the Internet Architecture Board (IAB).  The RFC Editor is
      responsible for the final editorial review and the on-line
      publication of RFCs.  The RFC Editor also maintains the official
      RFC archive and the index files and makes these accessible via the
      Web, FTP, and email [RFCed].  The RFC Editor also maintains a list
      of errata for previously-published RFCs.

      In performing these functions, the RFC Editor works closely with
      the IESG and with the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).
      Since 1977, the RFC Editor function has been performed by staff at
      the Information Sciences Institute of the University of Southern
      California (USC/ISI).

   1.2 Introduction to the RFC Publication Process

      This section contains a brief overview of the submission, review,
      and publication process for RFCs.  More details, especially for
      standards-track RFCs, will be found in RFC 2026, "The Internet
      Standards Process -- Revision 3" [RFC2026], as amended by later
      IESG policy statements.  RFC 2026 or its successor takes
      precedence in the case of any apparent conflict with this

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      1.2.1 RFC Submission and Review

         To be considered for publication as an RFC, a document must
         first be submitted as an Internet-Draft (I-D) [RFC2026]. This
         ensures an opportunity for feedback from members of the
         Internet community and from the IESG.  The Internet Draft must
         include boilerplate that allows RFC publication (see
         "Guidelines to Authors of Internet-Drafts" [IDguide]).

         The submission and review procedures for RFCs depend upon the
         document's source.  RFC submissions may come from the IETF,
         from the IAB, from the Internet Research Task Force (IRTF), or
         from an individual.

         o Submission from the IETF

            RFCs originating in the IETF are submitted to the RFC Editor
            via the IESG, which reviews them for technical quality and
            procedural conformance.  These IESG submissions are
            transmitted to the RFC Editor via official "Protocol Action"
            messages that are recorded at the IETF web site.
            Submissions through the IESG may be in any of the categories
            (Standards Track, Best Current Practice, Experimental,
            Informational, or Historic.)  All submissions in the
            Standards Track or Best Current Practice category must first
            be submitted to the IESG for approval; the IESG will submit
            them to the RFC Editor.

            At IESG request, the RFC Editor will add an "IESG Note" to a
            published RFC, to provide clarification or guidance to

         o Submission from the IAB

            The IAB may submit documents directly to the RFC Editor for
            publication as RFCs in the Informational or Experimental
            category, without IESG approval or review.

         o Individual Submission

            Individuals may submit documents directly to the RFC Editor
            for publication as RFCs in the Experimental or Informational

            The RFC Editor reviews each such individual submission for
            relevancy and appropriateness as well as general compliance
            with the rules in Sections 2, 3 and 4 of this document.
            Updates are requested as necessary, sometimes through

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            several iterations, until an acceptable submission document
            is achieved.

            To maintain the integrity of the RFC document series and to
            avoid wasting scarce publication resources, the RFC Editor
            may occasionally determine that a submission is not
            publishable because of its content or its form.  In such a
            case, the RFC Editor will attempt to explain as clearly and
            completely as possible the reasons for rejection.  The RFC
            Editor is always hopeful of a miracle -- that a bad document
            will re-emerge as a good document -- and occasionally it

            Once the document is clearly publishable, the RFC Editor
            passes the document to the IESG for review for conflicts
            with works in progress in the IETF [RFC2026].  When the
            topic of an individual submission is closely related to an
            existing IETF Working Group, the IESG may request that the
            author coordinate with that working group.  This may result
            in the production of a revised memo that eventually emerges
            from the IETF process as an IETF submission.  The IESG may
            also suggest improvements to the author of the document
            prior to publication.

            If the IESG feels that the submitted document is
            inappropriate material for publication as an RFC, they will
            make a "Do Not Publish" recommendation to the RFC Editor.
            The RFC Editor may then reject the document, or publish it
            with an "IESG Position" statement that defines their
            objections to the document or narrows its scope of
            applicability.  The IESG may also ask for deferred
            publication, in a maximum of two six-month increments.  The
            RFC Editor makes the final decision about publication of
            individual submissions.

         o Submission from the IRTF

            RFC submissions from IRTF members are treated as individual

         1.2.2 RFC Publication

            A document that is submitted to the RFC Editor enters the
            RFC Editor's queue, which is publicly accessible at the RFC
            Editor Web site [RFCed].  The RFC remains in the queue until
            it is published or until the IESG or the author requests
            that it be removed.

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            The RFC Editor ensures that the document follows the
            editorial rules described later in this document.  The RFC
            Editor may make editorial changes to clarify readability and
            to provide a uniform style and format.  If excessive work is
            required to satisfy the rules and/or to bring the RFC up to
            publication quality, the memo may be returned to the author
            or to the IESG for additional work.

            When editing of the document is complete, the RFC Editor
            sends the result to the authors for careful proof-reading.
            This quality control step is critical to maintaining the
            quality of RFCs.  Although this process is traditionally
            called the "Authors' 48 Hours" period, the RFC Editor is
            always willing to give authors reasonable additional time to
            review the document, and a document will not be published
            until all its listed authors agree.  While it is helpful to
            have one principal author during the editing process, all
            listed authors will be considered responsible for the
            correctness of the final document.

            In practice, the editorial process among the IESG, the RFC
            Editor, and the author(s) can be lengthy and convoluted, and
            the time spent in the RFC Editor's queue can vary greatly.
            Sometimes problems are found that require document revisions
            by the authors.  These revisions may require the publication
            of another Internet-Draft, and the result must be re-
            reviewed.  Publication may be held up awaiting IANA
            assignments, or in order to synchronize the publication of
            related RFCs.

2.  General RFC Editorial Policies

   This section summarizes some general editorial and publication
   policies for RFCs.  Individual policies may be modified or new
   policies added by the RFC Editor and the IESG, before the present
   document is revised.  RFC authors should obtain the latest policy
   statements (see "News") from the RFC Editor web page [RFCed].

   2.1 Immutability

      Since the RFCs form an archival series, an RFC cannot be altered
      once it is published.  To change the contents of an RFC, a new RFC
      must be written that obsoletes the previous one.  (Early in the
      history of RFCs, the Editor did occasionally make small editorial
      changes after publication, but this led to confusion regarding
      which version was correct, and it was a slippery slope.  To avoid
      these pitfalls, the never-change rule is now strictly enforced.)

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      Although RFCs are subjected to careful scrutiny by the RFC Editor
      and the authors before publication, errors do sometimes creep in.
      For this reason, the RFC Editor strongly urges the authors to
      thoroughly review the document during the "Authors' 48 hours"

      The RFC Editor maintains an online list of errata for existing
      RFCs.  If you find what you believe to be an error in an RFC,
      consult the errata page at the RFC Editor web site [RFCed].  If
      the bug is not listed, please send email to the authors of the
      document and to the RFC Editor.

   2.2 Not all RFCs are Standards

      Eager salesmen have been known to imply that all RFCs represent
      official Internet standards.  This is false and misleading.  While
      some RFCs are Standards Track documents, many have other
      categories and do not represent a standard of any kind.

   2.3 Publication Language

      Like the Internet itself, the IETF and the Internet Society are
      international organizations with participation from all areas of
      the world.  However, English is the primary language in which IETF
      business is conducted, and English is the official publication
      language for RFCs.

      RFCs submitted for publication are required to meet a reasonable
      standard for clear and correct English.

      RFC 2026 specifically allows RFCs to be translated into languages
      other than English.  Repositories may exist for RFCs that have
      been translated into particular languages. This is highly
      desirable and useful.  However, it is not possible for the RFC
      Editor to certify that such translations are accurate.  Therefore,
      the function of the RFC Editor, with respect to non-English RFCs,
      is limited to providing pointers to non-English language RFC
      repositories.  Upon request, the RFC Editor will list any such
      repository on its Web page.

   2.4 Publication Format(s)

      RFCs are published as plain text files in the [US-]ASCII character
      set, with the file name extension ".txt".

           The continued use of ASCII plain text for RFCs, despite the
           spread of "more modern" formats, is intermittently debated by
           the Internet community.  The consensus continues to be that

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           the great advantages of ASCII plain text -- the ability to
           readily edit, cut-and-paste, and search documents, the
           ubiquitous availability of tools for these functions, and the
           longevity of US-ASCII as a character standard -- make ASCII
           plain text the clear winner.

      For the convenience of those whose operating systems have
      difficulty supporting plain ASCII text, the RFC Editor also
      maintains PDF files that are exact facsimiles of the plain text
      versions.  These PDF files, with suffix .txt.pdf, are equally
      authoritative with the .txt versions.

      The ASCII plain text version (and its .txt.pdf facsimile) is
      always the official specification, and it must adequately and
      completely define the technical content.  (A very few exceptions
      have been made over the 30 year history of RFCs, allowing a
      definitive PostScript (.ps) version with no .txt version.)  The
      primacy of the ASCII version typically requires that the critical
      diagrams and packet formats be rendered as "ASCII art" in the .txt

      However, secondary or alternative versions in PostScript and/or
      PDF are provided for some RFCs, to allow the inclusion of fancy
      diagrams, graphs, or characters that cannot possibly be rendered
      in ASCII plain text.  If there is a PostScript or PDF version of
      the document, the author should inform the RFC Editor at the time
      of submission of the .txt version.

      PostScript and PDF versions suffer from a serious flaw: the RFC
      Editor cannot easily make editorial changes in the source file to
      produce a new document in either of these formats.  This can make
      the editorial process for .ps and .pdf versions somewhat painful
      for both the author and editor.  The following procedure is
      followed.  When a .ps (or .pdf) version is submitted with a .txt
      version, the RFC Editor will first edit the .txt version.  The
      final form of the .txt version (or, when feasible, the diffs) will
      be returned to the author.  The author must then update the
      .ps/.pdf files to match, as closely as possible, the content and
      format of the ASCII .txt file.  When the RFC Editor agrees that
      the .ps/.pdf versions are acceptable, they are published
      simultaneously with the .txt version.

   2.5 Consistent Document Style

      The RFC Editor attempts to enforce a consistent style of RFCs.  To
      do this, the RFC Editor may choose to reformat a submitted RFC or
      ask the author to reformat it.  Effort is minimized when the
      submitted document matches the style of the most recent RFCs.

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      Please read the rules and recommendations that are presented in
      following sections of this memo and look at some recent RFCs, to
      adopt an appropriate style.

      To format most ASCII RFCs for publication, the RFC Editor uses the
      "nroff" program with a simple set of the formatting commands (or
      "requests") from the "ms" macro package (see Appendix B).  If the
      author has an nroff source file, it will be helpful to make this
      available to the RFC Editor when the document is submitted.

      When a .ps version is published, the RFC Editor will also publish
      a matching .pdf version.  When a .txt version is published, the
      RFC Editor will also publish a matching .txt.pdf version.

   2.6 Assignment of RFC Numbers

      RFC numbers are not assigned until very late in the editorial
      process, to avoid gaps in the RFC number series.  Requests for
      early assignment of an RFC number are generally denied unless they
      originate from the IAB or the IESG.

   2.7 References and Citations

      An RFC will generally contain bibliographic references to other
      documents, and the body will contain citations to these
      references.  Section 4.7f specifies the format for the references
      listed at the end of the RFC body, but there is no required format
      for a citation.

      Within an RFC, references to other documents fall into two general
      categories: "normative" and "informative".  Normative references
      specify documents that must be read to understand or implement the
      technology in the new RFC, or whose technology must be present for
      the technology in the new RFC to work.  An informative reference
      is not normative; rather, it provides only additional information.
      For example, an informative reference might provide background or
      historical information.  Material in an informative reference is
      not required to implement the technology in the RFC.

      An RFC must include separate lists of normative and informative
      references (see Section 4.7f below.)  The distinction between
      normative and informative references is often important.  The IETF
      standards process and the RFC Editor publication process need to
      know whether a reference to a work in progress is normative.  A
      standards-track RFC cannot be published until all of the documents
      that it lists as normative references have been published.  In
      practice, this often results in the simultaneous publication of a
      group of interrelated RFCs.

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      We recommend enclosing citations in square brackets ("[ ]").
      Simple numeric citations ("[53]") can cause confusing gaps when
      the list of references is split between normative and informative.
      A good alternative is to have two separate series, "[n1]", "[n2]",
      ... "[i1]", "[i2]" for citations to normative and informative
      references.  Other choices include author abbreviations, possibly
      a year ("[Smith93]"), and some brief encoding of the title and
      year ("[MPLS99a]").

   2.8 URLs in RFCs

      The use of URLs in RFCs is discouraged, because many URLs are not
      stable references.  Exceptions may be made for normative
      references in those cases where the URL is demonstrably the most
      stable reference available.  References to long-lived files on
      ietf.org and rfc-editor.org are also acceptable.

      RFCs that include URLs as generic examples must be careful to use
      the particular example URLs defined in RFC 2606, "Reserved Top-
      Level DNS Names" [TLD99], to avoid accidental conflicts with real

   2.9 Titles

      Choosing a good title for an RFC can be a challenge.  A good title
      should fairly represent the scope and purpose of the document
      without being either too general or too specific.

      Abbreviations (e.g., acronyms) in a title (as well as the Abstract
      and the body; see Sections 4.5 and 4.7) must generally be expanded
      when first encountered.  The exception is abbreviations that are
      so common that every participant in the IETF can be expected to
      recognize them immediately; examples include (but are not limited
      to) TCP, IP, SNMP, and FTP.  Some cases are marginal and the
      decision on expansion may depend upon the specific title.  The RFC
      Editor will make the final judgment, weighing obscurity against

      It is often helpful to follow the expansion with the parenthesized
      abbreviation, as in the following example:

                               Encoding Rules for the
               Common Routing Encapsulation Extension Protocol (CREEP)

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      Authors should be aware that the title of an RFC may be subject to
      policy considerations in addition to the requirement that it
      provide a concise and technically sound summary of the document
      contents.  For example, at various times in the history of the
      IETF, the words "Requirements" and "Policies" as well as the
      phrase "The Directory" have been banned from RFC titles, each for
      its own reason.

      RFCs that document a particular company's private protocol must
      bear a title of the form "XXX's ... Protocol" (where XXX is a
      company name), to clearly differentiate it from an IETF product.

   2.10 IANA Considerations

      Many RFCs define protocol specifications that require the
      assignment of values to protocol parameters, and some define new
      parameter fields.  Assignment of these parameter values is often
      (and sometimes must be) deferred until publication of the defining
      RFC.  The IANA and the RFC Editor collaborate closely to ensure
      that all required parameters are assigned and entered into the
      final RFC text.

      Any RFC that defines a new "namespace" of assigned numbers should
      include an IANA Considerations section specifying how that space
      should be administered.  See "Guidelines for Writing an IANA
      Considerations Section in RFCs" [IANA98] for a detailed discussion
      of the issues to be considered and the contents of this section.

   2.11 Relation to other RFCs

      Sometimes an RFC adds information on a topic discussed in a
      previous RFC or completely replaces an earlier RFC.  Two terms are
      used for these cases: Updates and Obsoletes, respectively.


            Specifies an earlier document whose contents are modified or
            augmented by the new document.  The new document cannot be
            used alone, it can only be used in conjunction with the
            earlier document.


            Specifies an earlier document that is replaced by the new
            document.  The new document can be used alone as a
            replacement for the obsoleted document.  The new document
            may contain revised information or all of the same
            information plus some new information, however extensive or

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            brief that new information may be.

      In lists of RFCs and in the RFC-Index (but not on the RFCs
      themselves) the following are used for older documents that were
      referred to by Obsoletes or Updates relations in newer documents:


            Used to specify newer document(s) that replace the older


            Used to specify newer document(s) that modify or augment the
            older document.

   2.12 Authors Listed on RFC

      The IESG and IETF have ratified a policy of limiting the number of
      authors listed in the first page header of an RFC.  The specific
      policy is as follows:

      (1)  A small set of author names, with affiliations, may appear on
           the front page header.  These should be the lead author(s)
           who are most responsible for the actual text.  When there are
           many contributors, the best choice will be to list the person
           or (few) persons who acted as document editor(s) (e.g.,"Tom
           Smith, Editor").

           There is no rigid limit on the size of this set, but there is
           likely to be a discussion if the set exceeds five authors, in
           which case the right answer is probably to list one editor.

           The RFC Editor will hold all the people listed on the front
           page equally responsible for the final form and content of
           the published RFC.  In particular, the "Author's 48 Hours"
           final approval period will require signoff from all listed

      (2)  An RFC may include a Contributors section, listing those
           contributors who deserve significant credit for the document
           contents.  The Contributors section is intended to provide a
           level of recognition greater than an acknowledgment and
           nearly equal to listing on the front page.  The choice of
           either, both, or none of Contributor and Acknowledgment
           sections in a particular RFC depends upon the circumstance.

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      (3)  The body of an RFC may include an Acknowledgements section,
           in addition to or instead of a Contributors section.  An
           Acknowledgments section may be lengthy, and it may explain
           scope and nature of contributions.  It may also specify

      (4)  The Author's Address section at the end of the RFC must
           include the authors listed in the front page header.  The
           purpose of this section is to (1) unambiguously define
           author/contributor identity (e.g., the John Smith who works
           for FooBar Systems) and to (2) provide contact information
           for future readers who have questions or comments.

           At the discretion of the author(s), contact addresses may
           also be included in the Contributors section for those
           contributors whose knowledge makes them useful future
           contacts for information about the RFC.

      (5)  The RFC Editor may grant exceptions to these guidelines upon
           specific IESG request or in other exceptional circumstances.

      Finally, it is important to note that the copyright rules
      governing RFC publication [IPS03] require that an RFC must:

           "[acknowledge] all major Contributors.  A major Contributor
           is any person who has materially or substantially contributed
           to the [RFC]." [IPS03]

      The Contributors and Acknowledgment sections fulfill this

   2.13 April 1 RFCs

      Many years ago the RFC Editor established the practice of
      publishing one or more satirical documents on April 1 of each
      year.  Readers should be aware that many of the RFCs bearing the
      date April 1 are not to be taken seriously.  The RFC Editor
      reviews April 1 RFC submissions for cleverness, humor, and topical
      association with computer networking, and a few of the best are
      published.  Submissions must be made to the RFC Editor in time for
      review and publication.

      Note that in past years the RFC Editor has sometimes published
      serious documents with April 1 dates.  Readers who cannot
      distinguish satire by reading the text may have a future in

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   2.14 Requirement-Level Words

      Some standards-track documents use certain capitalized words
      ("MUST", "SHOULD", etc.) to specify precise requirement-levels for
      technical points.  RFC 2119 (BCP 14) [BCP14] defines a default
      interpretation of these capitalized words in IETF documents.  If
      this interpretation is used, RFC 2119 must be cited (as specified
      in RFC 2119) and included as a normative reference.  Otherwise,
      the correct interpretation must be specified in the document.

      Avoid abuse of requirement-level words.  They are intended to
      provide guidance to implementors about specific technical
      features, generally governed by considerations of
      interoperability.  RFC 2119 says, "Imperatives of the type defined
      in this memo must be used with care and sparingly.  In particular,
      they MUST only be used where it is actually required for
      interoperation or to limit behavior which has potential for
      causing harm (e.g., limiting retransmissions).  For example, they
      must not be used to try to impose a particular method on
      implementors where the method is not required for
      interoperability."  To simply specify a necessary logical
      relationship; the normal lower-case words should be used.  On the
      other hand, if the capitalized words are used in a document, they
      must be used consistently throughout the document.

   2.15 Formal Languages in RFCs

      See [Lang01] for IESG guidance on the use of formal languages in
      RFCs.  The RFC Editor will run every MIB through a MIB checker
      before publication, and machine verification of other formal
      languages included in RFCs may be required.

   2.16 Intellectual Property

      Increasingly, RFC publication is intertwined with issues of
      intellectual property (IP).  The two distinct kinds of IP issues
      for RFCs are often confused.

      o    Rights in Contributions.

           This set of issues concerns copyright protection on the RFC
           text as a document.  The governing principle is the desire to
           make RFCs maximally open, while preserving their integrity.
           For example, a published RFC must be open to reading by
           anybody, and it must be protected against alteration after it
           is published.  RFCs can be translated into foreign languages,
           and with some restrictions they can be republished and
           abstracted for other documents.

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           The present rules for RFC copyrights are contained in RFC
           2026 Sections 10.1, 10.2, 10.3 except 10.3.2 and 10.3.3, and
           10.4(C).  These rules call for the Copyright Notice and Full
           Copyright Statement sections in every RFC (see Sections 4.2
           and 4.9 below), granting the Internet Society non-exclusive

           The statement defining rights in contributions policy is
           under revision at this time.  [IPS03].

      o    Rights to Technology

           An RFC may describe technology -- e.g., a protocol or other
           technical specification -- that is subject to intellectual
           property right (IPR) claims (normally, through patents.)  The
           present rules for this case are contained in RFC 2026
           Sections 10.3.2, 10.3.3, and 10.4(A,B,D).  These rules are
           under revision at this time.

           An RFC should never itself contain an assertion of rights to
           technology.  For example, an RFC may not contain a patent

           RFC 2026 Sections 10.4(A,B) specified standard IPR disclaimer
           text that the RFC Editor should put in all standards-track
           RFCs.  In practice this has not happened, and it will not
           happen until the revised rules are adopted.

3. General Format Rules for RFCs

   This section defines the general rules governing the format of a
   published RFC (as opposed to requirements on submitted documents).
   Authors are requested to come as close to these rules as reasonable,
   but in any case the RFC Editor will ensure they are met before
   publication.  For example, the RFC Editor will supply headers and
   footers, adjust pagination to avoid "widows", and adjust a Table of
   Contents accordingly.

   However, author attention to these rules will streamline the
   publication process and reduce the average publication time.  If
   reaching the final format requires excessive effort by the RFC
   Editor, the author will be asked to assist in the reformatting.
   Authors are admonished to proof-read the final publication form
   carefully, to ensure that no errors accidentally crept in.

   These formatting rules are intentionally incomplete in some details.
   They attempt to define only what is strictly necessary for uniformity
   and simplicity (a virtue).  Some latitude is allowed to accommodate a

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   broad range of printers, systems, and evolving requirements.  The
   general objective is to create a series of documents that are
   reasonably uniform and are easy to read, while accommodating a wide
   range of content.

   Note that these rules govern an RFC as published.  During the
   publication process the RFC Editor will verify compliance and will
   repair minor infractions.

   3.1  General Formatting Rules

       (1) Character code

           The character code is US-ASCII [ASCII69] (also known as ISO
           646.IRV).  Only the printable ASCII characters and the three
           control characters CR, LF, and FF are allowed.

                Notes: CR and LF must be used only as provided in rule
                (2), and FF must be used only as provided in rule (3).
                Tab (HT) characters and Backspace (BS) characters are
                never allowed (hence there can be no underlining; see
                (4) below).

       (2) Width

           Each line must be limited to 72 characters followed by the
           character sequence that denotes an end-of-line (EOL).  This
           limit includes any left-side indentation.

                Note: A plain-text RFC is expected to be stored on a
                disk file using the EOL sequence of that system.  For
                example, MS DOS-based systems use the two-character
                sequence: CR LF (Carriage Return followed by Line Feed),
                Unix systems use the single character LF for EOL, and
                EBCDIC systems use the single character NL (New Line).

                Whenever an RFC is transmitted across the Internet,
                Internet protocol convention requires that each line of
                text be followed by the two-character EOL sequence CR LF
                (Carriage Return followed by Line Feed).  A user level
                protocol (e.g., FTP, Telnet, HTTP, SMTP, ...) must make
                the appropriate EOL transformation at each line end.
                Note that binary transmission of plain-text RFC files
                can cause the sender's EOL convention to "leak" into the
                receiver, causing confusion.

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       (3) Height

           Each page must be limited to 58 lines followed by a Form Feed
           (FF) character, followed by an EOL sequence.  The 58 line
           limit includes the headers and footers specified below.

           All pages, except perhaps the first and last, should have the
           same number of lines when headers and footers are included.
           That is, footers should not "bounce" from page to page.

                Note: The maximum line count includes blank lines.
                However, the first line will normally be the first
                header line and the last line will be the final footer
                line; that is, it will not begin or end with a blank

                Note: 58 lines is the maximum; 55 is more commonly used
                and may actually produce more readable formatting.  The
                recommended page formatting parameters (see Appendix B)
                produce 55 line pages on many printers, for example.

                Note: The effect of the Height rule is that the
                following character sequence will be used:

                  <Last non-blank line of page p> <EOL> FF <EOL>

                                  <First line of page p+1> <EOL> ...

                As transmitted across the Internet as ASCII text, the
                character sequence is:

                  <Last non-blank line of page p> CR LF FF CR LF

                                  <First line of page p+1> CR LF ...

                Finally, note that the sequence FF CR LF has an
                ambiguous effect: on some printers, the FF implies an
                EOL, so this may produce a blank line; on other printers
                it will produce no blank line.  The number 58 and this
                sequence were designed to render this ambiguity
                unimportant, assuming the (once predominant) printer
                standard of 60 lines per page.

       (4) No Overstriking

           No overstriking (or underlining) is allowed.

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       (5) No Filling

           Do not fill the text with extra spaces to provide a straight
           right margin.  Do not right justify the text.

       (6) No Hyphenation

           Do not use hyphenation at the right margin to split existing
           words.  However, hyphenated word sequences (e.g., "Internet-
           Draft") may be split at the hyphen across successive lines.

                Note: There are good reasons why the right page margin
                is required to be "ragged", and why hyphenation of words
                at the right margin is prohibited.  Studies have shown
                that text is harder to read when fixed-size spaces are
                inserted to adjust the right margins, regardless of
                which font is used or how smoothly the blank filler is
                inserted.  In addition, when technical text in a fixed-
                width font is hyphenated at the right margin, the
                printed result is not only less readable but also ugly.

       (7) Spaces at the End of a Sentence

           When a sentence ended by a period is immediately followed by
           another sentence, there should be two blank spaces after the
           period.  This rule provides clarity when an RFC is displayed
           or printed with a fixed-width font.

       (8) Footnotes

           Do not use footnotes.  If such notes are necessary, put them
           at the end of a section, or at the end of the document.

       (9) Line Spacing

           Use single-spaced text within a paragraph, and one blank line
           between paragraphs.

      (10) Page Numbering

           Pages must be numbered consecutively, starting from 1 on the
           first (cover) page.

      (11) Headers and Footers

           RFCs must have running headers and footers, as defined below
           in Section 3.3.  The headers and footers must be separated
           from the body by at least one and preferably two blank lines.

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      (12) Indentation

           Successive indentation of sub-subsections (as in this
           document, for example) is recommended but not required.
           Experience has shown that indentation by multiples of 3
           columns works well.  In any case, the careful use of
           indentation can make a very great improvement in the
           readability of a document.

   3.2  PostScript Format Rules

      (1p) Standard page size is 8 1/2 by 11 inches (216 by 279 mm).

      (2p) Leave a margin of 1 inch (25 mm) on all sides (top, bottom,
           left, and right).

      (3p) Main text should have a point size of no less than 10 points
           with a line spacing of 12 points.

      (4p) Footnotes and graph notations no smaller than 8 points with a
           line spacing of 9.6 points.

      (5p) Three fonts are acceptable: Helvetica, Times Roman, and
           Courier, plus their bold-face and italic versions.  These are
           the three standard fonts on most PostScript printers.

      (6p) Prepare diagrams and images based on lowest common
           denominator PostScript.  Consider common PostScript printer
           functionality and memory requirements.

      (7p) The following PostScript commands should not be used:
           initgraphics, erasepage, copypage, grestoreall, initmatrix,
           initclip, banddevice, framedevice, nulldevice or renderbands.

   3.3  Header and Footer Formats

      RFCs must include running headers and footers that obey the
      following rules.

      o Running Headers

         The running header in one line (on page 2 and all subsequent
         pages) has the RFC number on the left (RFC nnnn), the title
         (possibly shortened) in the center, and the publication date
         (Month Year) on the right.

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      o Running Footers

         All pages contain a one-line running footer, with the author's
         last name on the left, the category centered, and the page
         number on the right ("[Page nn]").

         If there are two authors, the form "name & name" may be used;
         for more than two authors, use the form "name, et al."

   3.4  Protocol Data Definitions

      Many years ago, the RFC series adopted a pictorial approach to
      representing data structures such as protocol headers.
      Furthermore, the research community adopted a "big-endian"
      convention in which the bits and bytes are shown in network byte
      order, byte zero is the first byte shown, and bit zero is the most
      significant bit in a word or a field [IEN137].

      For example, RFC 791 contains the following definition of the IP
      header format.  We strongly recommend that a new RFC follow the
      same formatting conventions, which have been found to work well.
      Any alternative style must meet the same level of clarity,
      readability, and lack of ambiguity.  An author wishing to use an
      alternative style should discuss it with the RFC Editor.

       0                   1                   2                   3
       0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
      |Version|  IHL  |Type of Service|          Total Length         |
      |         Identification        |Flags|      Fragment Offset    |
      |  Time to Live |    Protocol   |         Header Checksum       |
      |                       Source Address                          |
      |                    Destination Address                        |
      |                    Options                    |    Padding    |

                       Example Internet Datagram Header

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4.  Sections in an RFC

   A published RFC may contain the sections in the following list.  Some
   of these sections are required, as noted.  The order shown is
   required, except that the order shown for the sub-items 7a-7f within
   Body of Memo is generally recommended but not required.

      1.  First-page header           [Required]
      2.  Status of this Memo         [Required*]
      3.  Copyright Notice            [Required*]
      4.  IESG Note                   [As requested by IESG*]
      5.  Abstract                    [Required]
      6.  Table of Contents           [Required for large documents]
      7.  Body of the Memo            [Required]
       7a.  Contributors
       7b.  Acknowledgments
       7c.  Security Considerations   [Required]
       7d.  IANA Considerations
       7e.  Appendixes
       7f.  References
      8. Author's Address             [Required]
      9. Full Copyright Statement     [Required*]

   Those sections marked with * will be supplied by the RFC Editor
   during the editorial process.

   The rules for each of these sections are described below in
   corresponding subsections.

   The Body of the Memo will normally contain section numbers (or
   Appendix labels).  Sections listed as 1-6 and 8-9 are to be

   4.1.  First-Page Header

      Please see the front page of this memo for an example of the front
      page heading.  On the first page there is no running header.  The
      top of the first page has the following items left justified:

      "Network Working Group"

         This traditional title must be left-justified on the first line
         of the heading.  It denoted the ARPAnet research group that
         founded the RFC series.

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      "Request for Comments: nnnn"

         Identifies this as an RFC and specifies the number, left-
         justified on the second line.  The actual number is filled in
         at the last moment prior to publication by the RFC Editor.

      "BCP: nn" or
      "FYI: nn" or
      "STD: nn"

         One of these optional left-justified items indicates the sub-
         series number, if the RFC is a member of a sub-series.  The
         actual number is filled in at the last moment prior to
         publication by the RFC Editor.

      "Updates: nnnn" or "Updates: nnnn, ..., nnnn"

         Optional left-justified field, containing an RFC number or a
         comma-separated list of RFC numbers that are updated by this
         RFC.  See Section 2.11.

      "Obsoletes: nnnn" or "Obsoletes: nnnn, ... , nnnn"

         Optional left-justified field, containing an RFC number or a
         comma-separated list of RFC numbers that are obsoleted by this
         RFC.  See Section 2.11.

      "Category: xxxxxxxxx"

         Required left-justified field specifying the category of this
         RFC.  Here xxxxxxxx may be one of:  Standards Track, Best
         Current Practice, Informational, or Experimental.  Will be
         supplied by RFC Editor, according to request of submittor.

      The following information appears right-justified in the header:


         The author's name (initial of first given name followed by
         family name), right-justified on the first line of the heading.


         The author's organization, indicated on the line following the
         Author name.

         For multiple authors, each author name appears right-justified
         on its own line, followed by that author's organization.  When

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         more than one author has the same organization, the
         organization can be "factored out" and appear only once
         following the corresponding Author lines.  However, such
         factoring is not necessary if it results in an unacceptable
         reordering of author lines.

         The total number of authors is generally limited; see Section


         The month and year of the RFC Publication, right-justified on
         the line after the last Organization line.

      The title appears, centered, below the rest of the heading,
      preceded and followed by at least one blank line.  Periods
      ("dots") are not allowed in the title.

      The title should be carefully chosen to accurately reflect the
      contents of the document.  See also Section 2.9.

   4.2. Status of this Memo

      The RFC Editor will supply a "Status of this Memo" section that
      contains two elements: (1) a paragraph describing the category of
      the RFC, and (2) the distribution statement.  The contents of this
      section will be found in Appendix A.

   4.3  Copyright Notice

      The Copyright Notice section consists of the statement, "Copyright
      (C) The Internet Society (date).  All Rights Reserved." and is
      required.  The Full Copyright Statement described in Section 4.12
      must also appear at the end of the document.

   4.4  IESG Note

      This optional section will appear when the IESG requires a warning
      or clarifying message on an RFC.

   4.5  Abstract

      Every RFC must have an Abstract section following the Copyright
      notice.  An Abstract will typically be 5-10 lines.  An Abstract of
      more than 20 lines is generally not acceptable.

      The Abstract section should provide a concise and comprehensive
      overview of the purpose and contents of the entire document, to

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      give a technically knowledgeable reader a general overview of the
      function of the document.  In addition to its function in the RFC
      itself, the Abstract section text will appear in publication
      announcements and in the online index of RFCs.

      Composing a useful Abstract generally requires thought and care.
      Usually an Abstract should begin with a phrase like "This memo
      ..." or "This document ...".  A satisfactory abstract can often be
      constructed in part from material within the Introduction section,
      but a good abstract will be shorter, less detailed, and perhaps
      broader in scope than the Introduction.  Simply copying and
      pasting the first few paragraphs of the Introduction is tempting,
      but it may result in an Abstract that is both incomplete and
      redundant.  Note also that an Abstract is not a substitute for an
      Introduction; the RFC should be self-contained as if there were no
      Abstract section.

      An Abstract should be complete in itself; it should not contain
      citations unless they are completely defined within the Abstract.
      Abbreviations appearing in the Abstract should generally be
      expanded in parentheses.  There is a small set of reasonable
      exceptions to this rule; see the discussion under Titles, Section

   4.6  Table of Contents

      A Table of Contents (TOC) section is required in RFCs longer than
      30 pages and recommended for an RFC longer than 15 pages.

      A TOC must be positioned after the Abstract and before the
      Introduction section (i.e., after the "boilerplate" and before the
      body of the RFC.)

      The TOC itself should not be too long or detailed, or it loses
      value.  For example, if many successive TOC entries point to the
      same pages of the memo, the TOC probably needs to be coarser.

      No specific format is required, but the following example
      illustrates a useful format:

   1.  INTRODUCTION ...............................................    5
      1.1  The Internet Architecture ..............................    6
         1.1.1  Internet Hosts ....................................    6
         1.1.2  Architectural Assumptions .........................    7
         1.1.3  Internet Protocol Suite ...........................    8
         1.1.4  Embedded Gateway Code .............................   10
      1.2  General Considerations .................................   12
         1.2.1  Continuing Internet Evolution .....................   12

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         1.2.2  Robustness Principle ..............................   12
         1.2.3  Error Logging .....................................   13

   4.7  Body of the Memo

      Following the Table of Contents, if any, comes the body of the
      memo.  Depending upon the length of the TOC, a judicious page
      break can improve readability.

      Each RFC should have an Introduction section that (among other
      things) explains the motivation for the RFC and (if appropriate)
      describes the applicability of the document, e.g., whether it
      specifies a protocol, provides a discussion of some problem, is
      simply of interest to the Internet community, or provides a status
      report on some activity.

      All abbreviations that are used in the body must be expanded the
      first time they occur.  A few exceptions will be made for very
      well-known abbreviations; see the discussion under Titles in
      Section 2.9.

      Abbreviation overload is an increasingly common problem in RFCs.
      We recommend that complex RFCs include a brief glossary at the
      end.  On the other hand, a glossary is never a substitute for an

      Cross references within the body of the text should use section
      numbers rather than page numbers, as the RFC Editor generally
      adjusts pagination during final editing.  The only exception is
      the Table of Contents, which necessarily shows page numbers.

      4.7a  Contributors Section

         This optional section lists those contributors who deserve
         significant credit for the document.  When a long author list
         is replaced by a single Editor in the front page header, the
         displaced authors can be properly and fully acknowledged in the
         Contributors section.

         The Contributors section may include brief statements about the
         nature of particular contributions ("Sam contributed section
         3") and it may also include affiliations of listed
         contributors.  At the discretion of the author(s), contact
         addresses (see Author's Address section below) may also be
         included in the Contributors section, for those contributors
         whose knowledge makes them useful future contacts for
         information about the RFC.

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      4.7b  Acknowledgment Section

         This optional section may be used instead of, or in addition
         to, a Contributors section, when appropriate.

      4.7c  Security Considerations Section

         All RFCs must contain a section that discusses the security
         considerations relevant to the specification in the RFC; see
         [Secur03] for more information.

      4.7d  IANA Considerations Section

         See Section 2.10 above and [IANA98].

      4.7e Appendixes

         Many RFC documents have appendices, some of which may be very
         extensive.  Common practice is to position Appendixes at the
         very end of a document, after the references.  However, a
         significant set of RFCs have large and dense Appendix sections
         for technical details, which are actually an integral part of
         the document.  In this case, it can be difficult to locate the
         references.  We therefore recommend that, in general,
         references follow the Appendixes in an RFC.

      4.7f  References Section

         There are many styles for references, and the RFCs have one of
         their own.  Please follow the reference style used in recent
         RFCs; in particular, see the Reference section of this RFC for
         an example.  (Note:  the ordering of multiple authors is
         intended to be as shown.)  On the other hand, there is no
         required format for a citation; see the discussion in Section

         A reference to an RFC that has been assigned an STD, BCP, or
         FYI subseries number must include the subseries number of the

         Reference lists must indicate whether each reference is
         normative or informative.  For example, the reference section
         might be split into two sections, e.g.:

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                 s. Normative References


                s+1. Informative References


         Non-normative references to Internet-Drafts are allowed, but
         they must take the following restricted form: the author(s),
         the title, the phrase "Work in Progress", and the date; for

                  [doe13] Doe, J., "The Deployment of IPv6",
                          Work in Progress, May 2013.

         Normative references to Internet Drafts will cause publication
         of the RFC to be suspended until the referenced draft is also
         ready for publication; the RFC Editor will then replace the
         reference by an RFC reference and publish both simultaneously.

         The use of URLs in references in RFCs is discouraged, because
         URLs are often not stable references.  Exceptions will be made
         in certain cases where the World Wide Web is demonstrably the
         most stable reference available.

   4.8 Author's Address Section

      This required section gives the name(s) and contact information
      for the author(s) listed in the first-page header.  Contact
      information must include at least one, and ideally would include
      all, of a postal address, a telephone number and/or FAX number,
      and a long-lived email address.  The purpose of this section is to
      (1) unambiguously define author/contributor identity (e.g., the
      John Smith who works for FooBar Systems) and to (2) provide
      contact information for future readers who have questions or
      comments.  Note that some professional societies offer long-lived
      email addresses for their members.

   4.9  Full Copyright Statement

      Per Section 10.4(C) of BCP 9, RFC 2026, "The following copyright
      notice and disclaimer shall be included in all ISOC standards-
      related documentation."  This is the "Full Copyright Statement",

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      whose text will be found at the end of this RFC as well as in RFC

      A specific request from the IAB is required before the RFC Editor
      can include a dual copyright, or for any other variation of the
      standard ISOC copyright notice.

5.  RFC Information and Contacts

       *                                                          *
       *    RFC Editor Email:  rfc-editor@rfc-editor.org          *
       *                                                          *
       *                                                          *
       *    RFC Editor URL:  http://www.rfc-editor.org            *
       *                                                          *
       *                                                          *

   In particular, authors should look for the latest version of this
   document at the URL listed above.

   RFC publication announcements are distributed via two mailing lists:
   the "IETF-Announce" list and the "RFC-DIST" list.  The IETF-Announce
   list announces publication of both Internet Drafts and RFCs;
   instructions for subscription and unsubscription to this list are
   available on the IETF web site www.ietf.org.  The RFC-DIST list
   announces only RFC publication; subscription information is available
   at the RFC Editor URL listed above.

   RFC readers should be aware that the many mirrors of RFCs and RFC
   indexes that appear on other sites vary a great deal in reliability.
   Consulting the official RFC-Editor site listed above is recommended.

6.  Security Considerations

   This RFC describes the Security Considerations sections of an RFC.
   It raises no new security issues itself.

7.  Acknowledgments

   This memo includes wording taken from a draft written by Robert W.
   Shirey of GTE/BBN Technologies, 29 December 1999, with permission.
   Shirey's deconstruction of the formatting rules was very helpful in
   writing Sections 3 and 4 of the present memo.

   We are grateful for the many thoughtful and helpful suggestions made
   by IETF participants during the Last Call on a previous version of

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   this document.  We especially acknowledge the thorough analysis by
   John Klensin.

APPENDIX A: RFC Boilerplate

   The RFC Editor supplies the appropriate one of the following
   boilerplate paragraphs in the Status of the Memo section (see Section

   Standards Track

      "This document specifies an Internet standards track protocol for
      the Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions
      for improvements.  Please refer to the current edition of the
      "Internet Official Protocol Standards" (STD 1) for the
      standardization state and status of this protocol.  Distribution
      of this memo is unlimited."

   Best Current Practice

      "This document specifies an Internet Best Current Practices for
      the Internet Community, and requests discussion and suggestions
      for improvements.  Distribution of this memo is unlimited."


      "This memo defines an Experimental Protocol for the Internet
      community.  This memo does not specify an Internet standard of any
      kind.  Discussion and suggestions for improvement are requested.
      Distribution of this memo is unlimited."


      "This memo provides information for the Internet community.  This
      memo does not specify an Internet standard of any kind.
      Distribution of this memo is unlimited."

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APPENDIX B: RFC Preparation Tools

   As indicated earlier, the primary submission format for RFCs is ASCII
   text.  Authors have found various tools to be useful for preparing
   this text in the format required by RFCs and Internet-Drafts.  For
   more complete and uptodate information, see the RFC Editor Web page.

   This Appendix surveys some of the possibilities.

   nroff, groff
        The nroff program is widely available for Unix systems, while
        its freeware equivalent groff is available for an even wider
        range of platforms, including Windows.  These programs use
        directives in the text to control the formatting.  The RFC
        Editor, in particular, uses nroff for final RFC formatting.  A
        template is available as 2-nroff.template.

        An XML DTD for RFCs has been developed [XMLrf99] and a tool to
        format RFCs from XML source.  There is also an XML-to-nroff
        translator suitable for creating RFC text.  Authors have had a
        generally good experience with these tools.

   Microsoft Word
        Microsoft Word is an important example of a WYSIWYG editor.  RFC
        3285 [14] describes in detail how to configure Word to produce
        an ASCII text file in RFC format.  A version of this document as
        a Word file (2-Word.template.rtf) can be used as a template file
        to initialize this configuration for entering and displaying
        RFCs.  There is also a DOS executable (crlf.exe) for a post-
        processor to establish RFC end-of-line conventions in the Word
        output file.

        Note that these template files are suitable only for fairly
        simple text formatting; they may be incompatible with the more
        advanced features of Word.

        LaTeX is widely used for text preparation in many academic
        environments.  A convenient LaTeX template is available as 2-
        latex.template.  Latex in general does not produce plain ASCII
        text in the RFC format, but there are tools that translate LaTex
        to nroff; see the RFC Editor web page.

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APPENDIX C: Checklist

Topic                                                      | Section of
                                                           | this doc.
A. Editorial/Content Issues                                |
    o  Reasonably clear and correct English                |  2.3
            > Also, run spell checker                      |
    o  All abbreviations (with a few exceptions) are       |  4.7
        expanded when they first appear.                   |
    o  References:                                         |  2.7, 4.7f
            > Complete and current                         |
            > Normative and Informative listed separately  |  2.7
            > Internet Drafts correctly referenced         |  4.8
    o  All URLs are suspect: they must be stable.          |  2.8
    o  Title:                                              |  2.9
            > Descriptive and not misleading.              |
            > No suspect words, e.g., Proposed, Standard,  |
                                Requirements, Policy.      |
            > Abbreviations expanded                       |
    o  Author list not too long                            |  2.12
    o   Category field correct                             |  4.1
B. Basic Formatting                                        |  3.1
    o   Only printable ASCII characters                    |  3.1(1),
                                                           |    3.1(4)
    o   No lines exceeding 72 characters                   |  3.1(2)
        [This is especially important for "as is" tables   |
         and figures, which cannot be easily reformatted by|
         the RFC Editor.]                                  |
    o  Maximum page size is 58 lines.  [RFC Editor may     |  3.1(3)
         re-paginate, but this limit may be an issue for   |
         large "as is" tables and figures.                 |
    o   Must be ragged-right                               |  3.1(5)
    o   No word-breaking hyphenation at end of line        |  3.1(6)
    o   Two blanks after periods ending sentences          |  3.1(7)

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    o   No footnotes (end notes OK)                        |  3.1(8)
    o   Line spacing OK                                    |  3.1(9)
    o   Pages numbered                                     |  3.1(10)
    o   Running headers and footers OK                     |  3.3
    o   Formatted for easy reading; consistent spacing and |
        indentation                                        |  3.1(12)
    o   "Big-Endian" data definitions                      |  3.4
C. Required Sections supplied by author                    |  4
    o   Abstract                                           |  4.5
            > Clarity and content OK                       |
            > Reasonable length                            |
            > All abbreviations expanded                   |
            > No references                                |
            > Unnumbered section                           |
    o   Body of the Memo                                   |  4.7
            > Security Considerations                      |  4.7c
    o   Author's Address                                   |  4.8
D. Other Sections                                          |
    o   Table of Contents                                  |  4.6
            > Must be present in large document            |
    o   Body of the Memo                                   |  4.7
            > Contributors and/or Acknowledgments          | 4.7a, b
            > IANA Considerations, if needed               |  4.7d
            > Appendixes                                   |  4.7e
            > References                                   |  4.7f

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APPENDIX D: Changes from RFC 2223

      In general, this document contains the following major changes
      from RFC 2223.

   o  Section 1: Introduction

      The Introduction section was completely rewritten, using material
      from several sections of RFC 2223, bringing the discussion into
      conformance with RFC 2026 and adding additional clarification.

   o  Section 2: General RFC Editorial Policies

      This section combines material from several sections of RFC 2223.
      New material is included about the RFC Editor errata page,
      normative references, URLs, titles, RFC number pre-assignment,
      author lists, and IANA Considerations.

      Major procedural changes include: (1) publication of an RFC in
      both ASCII and PostScript versions now requires that both be
      published simultaneously, (2) all listed authors must give
      approval during the "Authors' 48 Hour" process, (3) long author
      lists are generally prohibited, and (4) a Contributors section is
      defined as an alternative to long author lists.

   o  Section 3: General Format Rules

      This section is expanded with much additional explanatory
      material.  For example:

           (1)  The requirement for printable ASCII characters is
                stated, and the use of CR, LF, and FF is clarified.

           (2)  The requirement for page numbers in specified.

           (3)  The requirement for running headers and footers is

   o  Section 4: Required Sections in an RFC

      This section is reorganized to cover all the required sections of
      an RFC in order.  It adds the current conventions for formatting
      multiple author names and organizations, and it defines section
      ordering more precisely.

      This section describes four major changes in RFC formatting.

           (1)  The style and contents of the Abstract section are more

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                completely specified, in order to make RFC abstracts
                useful for searching and indexing.

           (2)  A Table of Contents section is required or recommended
                in all but very short RFCs.

           (3)  Separate lists are now required for normative references
                and informative references.

           (4)  A new optional section, Contributors, is defined.

   o  Appendixes

      Former Appendix A, which contained the source for the fix.pl
      post-processor Perl script and an nroff RFC template, has been
      removed.  These files are available at the RFC Editor web site.

      Appendix B, RFC Preparation Tools, and Appendix C, Checklist, are

Normative References

   [BCP14]   Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
             Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.

   [BCP95]   Postel, J., Li, T. and Y. Rekhter, "Best Current
             Practices", BCP 1, RFC 1818, August 1995.

   [IPR03]   Bradner, S., "Intellectual Property Rights in IETF
             Technology", Work in Progress, June 2003.  [[This will hold
             up publication of RFC2223bis]]

   [IPS03]   Bradner, S., "IETF Rights in Submissions", Work in
             Progress, June 2003.  [[This will hold up publication of

   [RFCed]   RFC Editor web page, "http://www.rfc-editor.org".

   [RFC2026] Bradner, S., "The Internet Standards Process -- Revision
             3", BCP 9, RFC 2026, October 1996.

   [STD1]    Internet Engineering Task Force, Reynolds, J., Braden, R.,
             Ginoza, S., and A. De La Cruz, Ed., "Official Internet
             Protocol Standards", STD 1.  Latest version RFC 3300,
             November 2002.

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Informative References

   [ASCII69] Cerf, V., "ASCII Format for Network Interchange", RFC 20,
             October 1969.

   [FYI90]   Malkin, G. and J. Reynolds, "F.Y.I. on F.Y.I. --
             Introduction to the F.Y.I. Notes", FYI 1, RFC 1150, March

   [Hist99]  RFC Editor et al., "30 Years of RFCs", RFC 2555, April

   [IANA98]  Narten, T. and H. Alvestrand, "Guidelines for Writing an
             IANA Considerations Section in RFCs", BCP 26, RFC 2434,
             October 1998.

   [IDguide] IETF, "Guidelines to Authors of Internet Drafts".
             Available as 1id-guidelines.txt at http://www.ietf.org.

   [IEN137]  Cohen, D., "On Holy Wars and a Plea for Peace", Internet
             Experimental Note (IEN) 137, 1 April 1980.  A longer
             version is published in IEEE Computer Magazine, pp 48-54,
             October 1981.

   [Lang01]  IESG, "Guidance for the use of formal languages in IETF
             specifications", http://www.ietf.org/IESG/STATEMENTS,
             October 2001.

   [Secur03] Rescorla, E., Korver, B., and Internet Architecture Board,
             "Guidelines for Writing RFC Text on Security
             Considerations", Work in Progress, January 2003.

   [STD92]   Postel, J., Editor, "Introduction to the STD Notes", RFC
             1311, March 1992.

   [TLD99]   Eastlake, D. and E. Panitz, "Reserved Top Level DNS Names",
             RFC 2606, June 1999.

   [Word02]  Gahrns, M. and T. Hain, "Using Microsoft Word to create
             Internet Drafts and RFCs", RFC 3285, May 2002.

   [XMLrf99] Rose, M., "Writing I-Ds and RFCs using XML", RFC 2629, June

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CHANGES (To be removed by RFC Editor before publication)

Changes from -06 version

   1.   Changed document status from BCP to Informational.  All RFC
        Editor policy documents have been Informational RFCs.

   2.   Eliminated duplicate wording (numbers numbers) [1.1].

Changes from -05 version

   1.   Add Section 2.16 on Intellectual Property [2.16].

   2.   Note that all major contributors must be acknowledged [2.12].

   3.   Note that the RFC Editor fills in the sub-series number and the
        Categories field of the header, as well as the Status of this
        Memo field [4.1, 4.2].

   4.   Specify that internal cross references within the body of the
        memo should use section numbers, not page numbers [4.7].

   5.   Separate the list of changes that have been made in successive
        Internet Draft versions of this document from Appendix D, which
        summarizes changes from RFC 2223.  The former material is to be
        removed before publication.

   6.   Reduce the set of normative references.

   7.   Correct several minor nits.

Changes from -04 version

   1.   Replace overloaded "Status" attribute name with "Category"

   2.   Clarify the relation of this document to RFC 2026 [1.2].

   3.   Clarify the submission rules, including rules for IAB and IRTF
        documents and for BCPs [1.2]

   4.   Specify that RFC Editor reviews individual submissions for
        content as well as format [1.2.1].

   5.   Document "Do Not Publish Now" recommendation from the IESG

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Internet-Draft        Instructions to RFC Authors         26 August 2003

   6.   Distinguish between the plain text format and the US-ASCII
        character set [2.4, 3.1].

   7.   Clarify the distinction between citation format and reference
        format, and use a more appropriate format for citations in this
        document [2.7].

   8.   State that RFC 2119 is not required, but some meaning must be
        defined for capitalized applicability words [2.14].

   9.   Checking of MIBs and other formal languages [2.15]

   10.  Clarify that Section 3 defines published format, not submission
        format [3.].

   11.  Reorganize the sections in section 4 to clarify and simplify the
        section ordering rules, and move appendixes to match our
        recommendation [4].

   12.  Suggest Glossary [4.7].

   13.  Fix many typos reported by ever-vigilant IETF members.

Changes from -03 version

   1.   Combine sections 1.3.1 and 1.3.2 into one section 1.3.1.

   2    Clarify the section ordering rules in section 4.

Changes from -02 version

   1.   Removed old Appendix C (definition of ASCII) and replace it with
        a reference to RFC 20.

   2    Added new Appendix C, a Checklist.

   3    Made a few editorial changes and typo fixes.

   4    Clarified that .txt.pdf versions are equally authoritative with
        .txt versions of RFCs.

   5    Stated policy that (nearly) all abbreviations in body of the
        document must be expanded when first encountered.

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Changes from -01 version

   1.   Incorporated new author list guidelines.

   2.   Clarified rules for hyphenation (Section 3.1 (6)).

   3.   Added guideline on example URLs (Section 2.8).

   4.   Clarified that dangling normative references are strictly
        prohibited only for standards-track documents (Section 2.7).

Authors' Addresses

   Joyce K. Reynolds
   RFC Editor
   4676 Admiralty Way
   Marina del Rey, CA  90292

   EMail: rfc-editor@rfc-editor.org

   Robert Braden
   RFC Editor
   4676 Admiralty Way
   Marina del Rey, CA  90292

   EMail: rfc-editor@rfc-editor.org

Full Copyright Statement

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   This document and translations of it may be copied and furnished to
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   or assist in its implementation may be prepared, copied, published
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   Internet organizations, except as needed for the purpose of
   developing Internet standards in which case the procedures for
   copyrights defined in the Internet Standards process must be
   followed, or as required to translate it into languages other than

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   The limited permissions granted above are perpetual and will not be
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   This document and the information contained herein is provided on an


   Funding for the RFC Editor function is currently provided by the
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