Guidelines for Writing an IANA Considerations Section in RFCs

Thomas Narten, Harald Tveit Alvestrand


Many protocols make use of identifiers consisting of constants and other well-known values. Even after a protocol has been defined and deployment has begun, new values may need to be assigned (e.g., for a new option type in DHCP, or a new encryption or authentication transform for IPsec). To ensure that such quantities have consistent values and interpretations across all implementations, their assignment must be administered by a central authority. For IETF protocols, that role is provided by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA). In order for IANA to manage a given namespace prudently, it needs guidelines describing the conditions under which new values can be assigned or when modifications to existing values can be made. If IANA is expected to play a role in the management of a namespace, IANA must be given clear and concise instructions describing that role. This document discusses issues that should be considered in formulating a policy for assigning values to a namespace and provides guidelines for authors on the specific text that must be included in documents that place demands on IANA.


Keywords: RFC (Request For Comments)0.9;

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