Network Working Group
Request for Comments: 1818
BCP: 1
Category: Best Current Practice
J. Postel
T. Li
cisco Systems
Y. Rekhter
cisco Systems
August 1995

Best Current Practices

Status of this Memo

This document specifies an Internet Best Current Practices for the Internet Community, and requests discussion and suggestions for improvements. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.


This document describes a new series of documents which describe best current practices for the Internet community. Documents in this series carry the endorsement of the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).


The current IETF process has two types of RFCs: standards track documents and other RFCs (e.g., informational, experimental, FYIs) [1]. The intent of the standards track documents is clear, and culminates in an official Internet Standard [2,3]. Informational RFCs can be published on a less formal basis, subject to the reasonable constraints of the RFC editor. Informational RFCs are not subject to peer review and carry no significance whatsoever within the IETF process [4].

The IETF currently has no other mechanism or means of publishing relevant technical information which it endorses. This document creates a new subseries of RFCs, entitled Best Current Practices BCPs).

The BCP process is similar to that for proposed standards. The BCP is submitted to the IESG for review, and the existing review process applies, including a "last call" on the IETF announcement mailing list. However, once the IESG has approved the document, the process ends and the document is published. The resulting document is viewed as having the technical approval of the IETF, but it is not, and cannot become an official Internet Standard.

Possible examples of technical information to which BCPs could be applied are "OSI NSAP Allocation" [5], and "OSPF Applicability Statement" [6].


   [1] IAB, and IESG, "Internet Standards Process -- Revision 2", RFC
       1602, IAB and IESG, March 1994.
   [2] Postel, J., Editor, "Internet Official Protocol Standards", STD
       1, RFC 1800, IAB, July 1995.
   [3] Hinden, R., "Internet Engineering Task Force Internet Routing
       Protocol Standardization Criteria", RFC 1264, BBN, October 1991.
   [4] Waitzman, D., "Standard for the Transmission of IP Datagrams on
       Avian Carriers", RFC 1149, BBN, April 1990.
   [5] Collela, R., Callon, R., Gardner, E., and Y. Rekhter, "Guidelines
       for OSI NSAP Allocation in the Internet", RFC 1629, NIST,
       Wellfleet, Mitre, IBM, May 1994.
   [6] Chapin, L., "Applicability Statement for OSPF", RFC 1370, IAB,
       October 1992.

Security Considerations

Security issues are not discussed in this memo.

Authors' Addresses

      Jon Postel
      USC - ISI, Suite 1001
      4676 Admiralty Way
      Marina del Rey, CA  90292-6695
      Phone: 310-822-1511

Yakov Rekhter
cisco Systems, Inc.
170 West Tasman Drive
San Jose, CA 95134

      Phone: 914-528-0090

Tony Li
cisco Systems, Inc.
1525 O'Brien Drive
Menlo Park, CA 94025