Liaison statement
Relationship between ONF and the IETF

State Posted
Submission Date 2012-07-18
Sender Bernard Aboba
From Internet Architecture Board
Purpose In response
Attachments (None)
Liaisons referred by this one Liaison between ONF and IETF
The IETF welcomes the letter you sent relating to communication between the
ONF and the IETF.  

The IETF would be pleased to have individuals participating in the ONF also
participate in IETF work, whether related to SDN, or to other topics of shared
interest.  As a general rule, the IETF encourages communication between groups
and sharing of information. 

All IETF Internet Drafts (and approved RFCs) are publicly available for
reading and may be referenced in ONF documents.   Since the IETF allows free
reproduction of verbatim copies, if the ONF wishes to include IETF RFCs in
their document repositories, we would welcome the wider circulation.  

IETF copyright issues are managed by the IETF trust, and the licensing policy
can be found at
(see section 3 in particular).   There are also procedures for publishing
specifications from other bodies in the RFC series; whether this would be a
suitable publication venue for the ONF depends upon the intended scope and
motivation.  Discussions usually begin with the RFC Series Editor, reachable
at   A good starting point for evaluating this is
RFC 4844 which defines the RFC Series.

Historically, the IETF has found that joint work on standards development is
very rarely successful, even with standards bodies with which we have formal
liaison relationships.  Obstacles include differences in process, change
control, IPR policies and procedures; in addition, attendance at multiple
meetings is difficult for the individuals involved.  

Instead, the IETF encourages communication about new and existing work,
including updates on the scope, purpose and approach.   For the ONF to receive
advance notice of new-work within the IETF, the best way is to subscribe to
the New-Work mailing list.

Changes to IETF specifications, or development of new specifications is
handled via the IETF process as described in RFC 2026.  Discussion of new work
typically begins with an Internet Draft explaining the problem and
establishing requirements for a solution.  Depending on the scope of work that
is envisaged, the Internet Draft can be reviewed within an existing IETF
Working Group, or a mailing list may be established to discuss formation of a
new Working Group.  

Once a Working Group has been chartered with a work item, that Working Group
will review, discuss, modify, and, if agreed, approve any actual protocol
changes, which will then be reviewed by IETF last call and IESG review as per
normal IETF process.

Since the IANA maintains registries both on behalf of the IETF as well as
other organizations, it is possible for the ONF to contract with IANA to run
registries based on published ONF specifications.  If the ONF desires
allocation of code points in spaces managed by the IANA on behalf of the IETF,
this can be handled through the IETF-defined registries and procedures
described in RFC 5226.

For the Internet Architecture Board,

Bernard Aboba
IAB Chair