Electric Power Research Institute Comments on IPng
RFC 1673

Document Type RFC - Informational (August 1994; No errata)
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Network Working Group                                         R. Skelton
Request for Comments: 1673                                          EPRI
Category: Informational                                      August 1994

           Electric Power Research Institute Comments on IPng

Status of this Memo

   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.


   This document was submitted to the IETF IPng area in response to RFC
   1550.  Publication of this document does not imply acceptance by the
   IPng area of any ideas expressed within.  Comments should be
   submitted to the big-internet@munnari.oz.au mailing list.

Executive Summary

   The question of the future of the Internet protocol (IP) is an issue
   of national if not international concern. It is critical to the
   building of a National Information Infrastructure, comparable to the
   adoption of basic standards for the industrial era such as railways,
   highways and electricity.

   The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) is a non-profit
   organization, with 700 voluntary utility members, managing a
   technical research and development program for the electric utility
   industry to improve power production, distribution and use. The
   electric power industry is a major user of computing and
   communications and is fully committed to open systems.

   While the industry is today a heavy user of the Internet Protocol
   Suite (IPS) it is following a long term strategy based on
   international standards developed by ISO and CCITT and national
   standards developed by the IEEE, ANSI and other standards bodies that
   employ formal review and voting procedures.

   This strategy is based on a survey of needs in all aspects of the
   electrical power supply enterprise.  It concluded that these needs
   are met more effectively by the current suite of OSI protocols and
   international standards under development. Therefore, EPRI developed
   the Utility Communications Architecture (UCA) specification for
   communications and the Database Access Integrated Services
   specification for data exchange both based on the OSI model and

Skelton                                                         [Page 1]
RFC 1673                 EPRI Comments on IPng               August 1994

   international standards.

   These specifications have been incorporated into the Industry
   Government Open Systems Specification (IGOSS).  They are receiving
   favorable response and application by the industry and its suppliers
   as well as the support of the natural gas and waterworks industries.

   The issues facing the Internet community concerning growth and the
   address and routing limitations of IP in particular, provide an ideal
   opportunity for creating the  national uniform information transport
   superhighway. This is critical to the NII Agenda and the only
   proposal that will achieve this goal is one that is acceptable from
   both private and public sector viewpoints with both a national and an
   international perspective.

   EPRI also believes it is critically important that new requirements
   need to be achieved by convergence of efforts to develop additional
   standards.  Security, directory services, network management, and the
   ability to support real-time applications are four examples of where
   new convergent standards efforts are required.

   Just as society could not in the past accept multiple standards for
   the gauge of the nation's railways,  we can no longer accept multiple
   standards for information transport.

Engineering Considerations

   1. Mandatory Requirement.

      Inter networking must evolve to provide an industrial strength
      computing and communications environment for multiple uses of
      globally connected network resources.  Specifically the underlying
      transport must provide high integrity support for upper layer
      industrial OSI applications including but not limited to MMS  and
      TP. Use of interface layers such as RFC 1006 is not acceptable
      except as a transition strategy.

   2. Basic Requirements.

      - Scaleability
        The addressing scheme must have essentially an unlimited address
        space to encompass an arbitrarily large number of information
        objects.  Specifically it must solve the fundamental limitations
        of 32 bit formats, a format for 20 octets and above is considered

Skelton                                                         [Page 2]
RFC 1673                 EPRI Comments on IPng               August 1994

      - Routing table economy
        Network addressing must achieve significant economy in routing
        database size with very large networks.
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