Re: Thought experiment [Re: Quality of Directorate reviews]

Keith Moore <> Thu, 07 November 2019 21:36 UTC

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Subject: Re: Thought experiment [Re: Quality of Directorate reviews]
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From: Keith Moore <>
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Date: Thu, 7 Nov 2019 16:36:25 -0500
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On 11/7/19 3:19 PM, Michael Richardson wrote:

> Keith Moore <> wrote:
>      > This is where the biggest disconnect between 2026 and reality is.   If the
>      > reality is that industry is going to deploy implementations at Proposed
>      > Standard or sooner (and as far as I can tell, that's been reality for as long
>      > as there's been an Internet "industry"), it makes sense for IETF to recognize
>      > that and react accordingly.
> You are saying this as if it's a bug.
> It's not!  It's by design.
> We deploy at PS in order to find out if there is interoperability.

My first impression is that this is indeed a bug, a tremendous 
disservice to Internet users.   But I remind myself that automatic 
software update is becoming increasingly common.   So at least for 
products that are certain to be run on Internet-connected hosts (as 
opposed to, say, on air-gapped networks), and for which secure update 
can be provided, there might be cases for which premature deployment 
makes sense - especially if there's a strategy designed into the 
protocol for dealing with version skew in the endpoints' 
implementations.   (Assuming public internet connectivity isn't at all 
the general case, but it's an important corner case.)

Also, PS criteria were specifically not designed for deployment; the 
idea was that you need interop testing before deploying.   But if 
interop testing were incorporated earlier in the process (which does 
seem to be more common these days) then the sequencing assumed by 2026 
might be suboptimal.

I could imagine that rather than the initial RFC being at PS, it could 
be (for some cases, probably not all) at something akin to what Draft 
Standard used to be - interop testing already done by the time the 
initial RFC is published, with any changes made as a result of the 
testing incorporated into that RFC.

>      > If we want there to be a prototype "just for testing" status, it should
>      > probably be called something other than Proposed - the name has come to mean
>      > something else in IETF context.   And we should deliberately change one or
>      > more protocol elements to make the standard incompatible with
> We do "just for testing" regularly at the internet-draft stage.

yeah, and it doesn't make sense to go through the whole RFC publication 
process just to agree on a specification to test to.