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Terminal Server Accounting and Authentication (termacct)

WG Name Terminal Server Accounting and Authentication
Acronym termacct
State BOF Concluded
Charter charter-ietf-termacct-01 Approved
Document dependencies
Personnel Chairs Brian Lloyd, Larry Blunk
Area Director Deirdre C. Kostick
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Charter for Working Group

The "Authentication, Authorization, and Accounting Issues for
Terminal/Network Servers" BOF will be held from 7:00 - 10:00 PM
on Tuesday, November 19 at the 22nd IETF meeting in Santa Fe.

Motivation for this BOF

In the course of planning for the replacement of the existing
proprietary and outmoded equipment that provides user access to
MichNet, we have identified several required functions which we
currently offer that are not available in any comparable commercial
equipment that we have come across. The major functionality we find
lacking lies in the areas of authentication, authorization, and
accounting. We feel that the lack of functionality in these areas
presents problems that are by no means specific to MichNet; These
problems are, or will be, faced by many other network providers. In
order to illustrate the issues to be discussed, we next present
a few examples of some of the functions in the topic areas that are
currently performed within MichNet.

Currently access to specific destinations within MichNet can be
either allowed or disallowed based upon factors such as whether the
user has been identified to the network, whether the user's account
can be billed against, or whether the user's point of access is a
dial-up or direct line. A usage charge can be imposed at
either end of a connection, and the network collects the billing
information. The sending of IP packets off MichNet from dial-up
lines can be restricted only to authorized users.

However, these required functions are provided in an ad hoc manner
in the current network; We would much prefer to see them provided
in a standard manner in the replacement equipment. Adherence to
standards in the provision of these functions would allow us, and
others, to easily upgrade to new equipment as it becomes available
and also to select this equipment from various vendors.

While the equipment we are replacing is used mostly for
asynchronous user access, the issues to be discussed extend to
other forms of access as well. The term "terminal/network server"
refers to devices that allow access to and from an IP network via a
dumb terminal, a PC or workstation using point-to-point framed IP
(PPP, SLIP, SLFP), and other non-IP networks.

Purpose of this BOF

The particular functions we would like to address at this BOF lie
in the areas of authentication, authorization and accounting. These
are the areas related to terminal/network server access that we
feel need the most attention from the IETF. Most of the discussion
at this BOF will center upon these three areas.

We also would like to discuss the concept of providing a
standard, server based, user interface that could be used to
control session establishment in a manner independent of the type
of terminal/network server providing the access. It may be
possible to have workstations also provide this standard user
interface for session control. The areas of authentication,
authorization, and accounting are central to this concept as well.

We hope to accomplish the following at this BOF.

  • Share experience/needs and seek advice in the areas of
    authentication, authorization and accounting in relationship to
    network access.

  • Identify existing standards that could be applied to the

  • Identify working groups that might be interested in solving these

  • Make plans to provide input to these WGs.

  • Possibly start a new working group(s), if problems remain which
    will not be addressed by the existing process.

Outline of this session

We would like this BOF to be very interactive. We will attempt to
follow this format:

  • A model for viewing the issues will be described and terms
    will be defined.

  • A set of authentication, authorization, and accounting
    requirements will be proposed.

  • Many issues related to required or desired functions as well as
    to the scope of this endeavor will be discussed.

  • We will finish up with some discussion of where we go from here.