Message from the IETF Chair

By: Russ Housley

Date: October 7, 2008

line break image
photo of russ housley
Russ Housley, IETF Chair

Held at City West in Dublin, in July 2008, IETF 72 was by all measures a highly successful meet-ing. With 1,183 people from 48 different countries in attendance, the week was filled with the usual mix of working group (WG) meetings, BoF (birds-of-a-feather) sessions, research group (RG) meetings, and, as always, many side meetings. Our host, Alcatel-Lucent, certainly made everyone feel welcome, and we had a wonderful time at the Guinness Storehouse on Tuesday evening. The network connecting City West to the rest of the Internet was provided by eircom, and the local network was provided by Alcatel-Lucent, with considerable support from volunteers.

Since IETF 71, 5 new WGs were chartered and 11 WGs were closed, leading to approximately 115 chartered WGs in total. Between the meetings, the WGs and their individual contributors pro-duced 475 new Internet-Drafts and generated 1,071 updated Internet-Drafts. The Internet Engi-neering Steering Group approved 134 Internet-Drafts for publication as RFCs and the RFC Editor published 88 new RFCs.

One of the hot topics during IETF 72 was the coexistence of IPv4 and IPv6. The discussions about requirements for NAT-PT (network address translation-protocol translation) in the Internet Area were especially lively. To aid in the discussion, an IPv6-only network was available through-out the week so people could see what the Internet would be like without IPv4. While the topic was not resolved, an interim meeting is being organized for early October in Montreal to continue the discussions. The meeting will cover topics that affect work ongoing in a number of WGs, including SOFTWIRE, V6OPS, and BEHAVE.

At IETF 73, we expect to conduct a scheduling experiment that we hope will lead to the creation of additional meeting time for WGs. Instead of ending at 11:30 on Friday, we will end at 15:15. The after-lunch meeting slots will mean more than 16 additional hours of session time for WGs. Follow-ing the meeting, the IETF will evaluate the results of the experiment and determine whether a longer meeting is something we want to continue in the future.

I look forward to IETF 73 in Minneapolis, which is scheduled for 16-21 November 2008, and will be hosted by Google, and to IETF 74 in San Francisco on 22-27 March 2009, which will be hosted by Juniper Networks. Scheduling information for future IETF meetings may always be found here. I look forward to seeing you at the meetings.