Protocol Action: 'Transmission of IPv6 Packets over IEEE 802.15.4 Networks' to Proposed Standard

The IESG <> Tue, 01 May 2007 15:35 UTC

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Subject: Protocol Action: 'Transmission of IPv6 Packets over IEEE 802.15.4 Networks' to Proposed Standard
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The IESG has approved the following document:

- 'Transmission of IPv6 Packets over IEEE 802.15.4 Networks '
   <draft-ietf-6lowpan-format-13.txt> as a Proposed Standard

This document is the product of the IPv6 over Low power WPAN Working 

The IESG contact persons are Mark Townsley and Jari Arkko.

A URL of this Internet-Draft is:

Technical Summary 
6LoWPAN is specification describing how to utilize
IPv6 on top of low power, low data rate, low cost personal area
networks. These networks today being built using IEEE 802.15.4
standard radios. These radios have an extremely limited frame
size which makes it necessary to define an adaptation layer to
support link layer fragmentation and reassembly. Additionally
since these networks utilize low power transmission it is
necessary for the adaptation layer to support network layer mesh
capabilities. This specification defines the header format for
this adaptation layer.

Working Group Summary

During the working group last call on the format document, several minor
problems were recognized related to the layout of the fields in the
adaptation header.  At that time, David Culler and Jonathan Hui
presented a new header encoding that provided for a overall smaller
header and also "fixed" the earlier problems.  This new encoding, rather
than relying on a single monolithic header, utilizes multiple smaller
"stacked" headers (similar to IPv6).  Jonathan presented this new
encoding at the November IETF.  There was some concern about such a
significant change at that late date, but it was agreed that the working
group would take a concentrated look at the proposal and also the impact
on code complexity and implementation. The Chairs set a 1 month deadline
to get feedback from the group and especially those organizations that
had already started implementing the previous version of 6LoWPAN.  Very
shortly after the IETF meeting an implementation for parsing the new
header was sent to the list and over the next couple of weeks the
feedback from the group was generally positive.  During this time the
document editors published a new revision and we started a new WGLC.
This final WGLC proceeded without any substantial comments to the

Document Quality
There are at least 6 independent implementations of this protocol
being worked on and all concerns raised during the review and
WGLC have been addressed. Geoff Mulligan is the Document Shepherd.

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