TCP is currently the Internet's predominant transport protocol. TCPM is the working group within the IETF that handles small TCP changes, i.e., minor extensions to TCP algorithms and protocol mechanisms. The TCPM WG serves several purposes:
* The WG mostly focuses on maintenance issues (e.g., bug fixes) and modest changes to the protocol, algorithms, and interfaces that maintain TCP's utility.
* The WG is a venue for moving current TCP specifications along the standards track (as community energy is available for such efforts).
* The WG maintains Multipath TCP (MPTCP) and is a home for minor MPTCP enhancements including updates to the existing multipath congestion control.
* The focus of the working group is TCP. In cases where small changes are directly applicable to other transports (e.g., SCTP or DCCP), the mappings to other transports may be specified alongside that for TCP, but other significant additions and changes to other transports are not in scope.
TCPM also provides a venue for standardization of incremental enhancements of TCP's standard congestion control. In addition, TCPM may document alternative TCP congestion control algorithms that are known to be widely deployed, and that are considered safe for large-scale deployment in the Internet. Changes of algorithms may require additional review by the IRTF Congestion Control Research Group (ICCRG). Fundamental changes to TCP or its congestion control algorithms (e.g., departure from loss-based congestion control) will be handled by other working groups or will require rechartering.
TCP's congestion control algorithms are the model followed by other IETF transports (e.g., SCTP or DCCP), which are standardized in other working groups, such as the Transport Area WG (tsvwg). In the past, the IETF has worked on several documents about algorithms that are specified for multiple protocols (e.g., TCP and SCTP) in the same document. Which WG shepherds such documents will be determined on a case-by-case basis. In any case, the TCPM WG will remain in close contact with other relevant WGs working on these protocols to ensure openness and stringent review from all angles.
New TCPM milestones that fall within the scope specified within the charter can be added after consensus on acceptance in the working group and approval by the responsible Area Director.
Submit document on a TCP Extended Data Offset Option to the IESG as a Proposed Standard RFC