Uniform Resource Names (URNs)
RFC 8141

Document Type RFC - Proposed Standard (April 2017; No errata)
Obsoletes RFC 2141, RFC 3406
Last updated 2017-04-27
Replaces draft-ietf-urnbis-rfc3406bis-urn-ns-reg, draft-saintandre-urnbis-2141bis, draft-ah-rfc2141bis-urn
Stream IETF
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Reviews
Stream WG state Submitted to IESG for Publication (wg milestones: Dec 2013 - Update URN Namespace..., Dec 2013 - Collect and settle f..., Jan 2014 - WGLC on URN Namespac..., Feb 2014 - Update URN Syntax (2..., Mar 2014 - WGLC on URN Syntax (... )
Document shepherd Barry Leiba
Shepherd write-up Show (last changed 2017-02-02)
IESG IESG state RFC 8141 (Proposed Standard)
Consensus Boilerplate Yes
Telechat date
Responsible AD Alexey Melnikov
Send notices to "Barry Leiba" <barryleiba@computer.org>
IANA IANA review state Version Changed - Review Needed
IANA action state RFC-Ed-Ack
Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)                    P. Saint-Andre
Request for Comments: 8141                                      Filament
Obsoletes: 2141, 3406                                         J. Klensin
Category: Standards Track                                     April 2017
ISSN: 2070-1721

                     Uniform Resource Names (URNs)

Abstract

   A Uniform Resource Name (URN) is a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI)
   that is assigned under the "urn" URI scheme and a particular URN
   namespace, with the intent that the URN will be a persistent,
   location-independent resource identifier.  With regard to URN syntax,
   this document defines the canonical syntax for URNs (in a way that is
   consistent with URI syntax), specifies methods for determining URN-
   equivalence, and discusses URI conformance.  With regard to URN
   namespaces, this document specifies a method for defining a URN
   namespace and associating it with a namespace identifier, and it
   describes procedures for registering namespace identifiers with the
   Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).  This document obsoletes
   both RFCs 2141 and 3406.

Status of This Memo

   This is an Internet Standards Track document.

   This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force
   (IETF).  It represents the consensus of the IETF community.  It has
   received public review and has been approved for publication by the
   Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  Further information on
   Internet Standards is available in Section 2 of RFC 7841.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at
   http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc8141.

Saint-Andre & Klensin        Standards Track                    [Page 1]
RFC 8141                          URNs                        April 2017

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2017 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Saint-Andre & Klensin        Standards Track                    [Page 2]
RFC 8141                          URNs                        April 2017

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
     1.1.  Terminology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
     1.2.  Design Trade-offs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
       1.2.1.  Resolution  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
       1.2.2.  Character Sets and Encodings  . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
   2.  URN Syntax  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
     2.1.  Namespace Identifier (NID)  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
     2.2.  Namespace Specific String (NSS) . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
     2.3.  Optional Components . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  12
       2.3.1.  r-component . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  12
       2.3.2.  q-component . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  13
       2.3.3.  f-component . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  15
   3.  URN-Equivalence . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  16
     3.1.  Procedure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  16
     3.2.  Examples  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  17
   4.  URI Conformance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  18
     4.1.  Use in URI Protocol Slots . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  18
     4.2.  Parsing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  19
     4.3.  URNs and Relative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  19
     4.4.  Transport and Display . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  19
     4.5.  URI Design and Ownership  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  20
   5.  URN Namespaces  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  20
     5.1.  Formal URN Namespaces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  22
     5.2.  Informal URN Namespaces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  23
   6.  Defining and Registering a URN Namespace  . . . . . . . . . .  24
     6.1.  Overview  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  24
     6.2.  Registration Policy and Process: Community Registrations   25
     6.3.  Registration Policy and Process: Fast Track for Standards
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