[rfc-i] 'gaps' in the RFC index

RFC Editor rfc-editor at rfc-editor.org
Fri Oct 2 09:41:01 PDT 2009


Alfred,

Thank you for your email.  Please see comments inline.

On Fri, Oct 02, 2009 at 11:19:07AM +0200, Alfred Hnes wrote:

[snip]

> The RFC index used to document which RFC numbers have never been
> issued (and will not be issued any more).  To this end, the
> "rfc-index.txt" file, as indicated in its preface, contains
> entries of the form:
> 
>   #### Not Issued.
> 
> and these entries appear in the XML version of the RFC index as:
> 
>   <rfc-not-issued-entry>
>       <doc-id>RFC####</doc-id>
>   </rfc-not-issued-entry>
> 
> Unfortunately, the useful practice to insert such entries has
> been ceased gradually during the last years.  The last such entry
> added was for RFC 4637, but there are many gaps left open earlier
> as well.
> It would be appreciated very much for clarity and visibility
> if decisions to not publish RFCs with specific numbers were made
> visible in the RFC metadata, in this established tradition.

We try to go through the numbers periodically to update the "never
issued" numbers, but there are many factors that do not allow us to
update the numbers as quickly one might wish.  

> The upcoming transition of the RFC Editor function might be a
> good opportunity to perform such cleanup.
> 
> There are three classes of RFC numbers missing from the RFC index
> (list current up to RFC number 5650, omitting documents in AUTH48):
> 
> a)  RFC xx00  (STD 1)  series:
> 
>                                                         3800, 3900,
>         4000, 4100, 4200, 4300, 4400, 4500, 4600, 4700, 4800, 4900,
>               5100, 5200, 5300, 5400, 5500, 5600

Some of these will be updated to "never issued" when we next update
the rfc-index.

> b)  RFC xx99  (Summary)  series:
> 
>                           3399,             3699, 3799, 3899, 3999,
>         4099, 4199, 4299, 4399, 4499, 4599, 4699, 4799, 4899, 4999,
>         5099, 5199, 5299, 5399, 5499, 5599

These are not obsolete.  We intend to update these when possible.
However, it cannot be done until some of the issues regarding the
numbers mentioned below are clarified, and until the numbers above are
marked as never issued.  

> c)  sporadic numbers:
> 
>         3333, 3350, 3907, 3908,
>         4232, 4658, 4751, 4921, 4922, 4989,
>         5245, 5312, 5313, 5314, 5315, 5319, 5522, 5644

All of the above numbers have not been designated as "never
assigned."  For various reasons, an RFC number may have been assigned,
but hasn't made it to publication yet.  Additionally, RFC numbers 5522
and 5644 will be published; they are not "never issued."  RFC numbers
are not assigned strictly in sequential order.  

We agree that the index should be updated, and we intend to do so
shortly.  However, with the pending transition, we are currently
focusing our efforts on preparing for the transition and moving
through the current queue.  

Thank you for the reminder; this is something that was/is on our list
to get done before transition as well.

RFC Editor/sg


> Discussion:
> 
> Re a)
> 
> RFC 5000 has been published, its predecessor was RFC 3700.
> Remarkably, RFC numbers 3100, 3200, 3400, and 3500 indeed are
> already listed as "Not Issued".
> It is not expected that the other gaps in the RFC xx00 series will
> be filled; a future STD 1 (if any) will likely be assigned a higher,
> then 'current' RFC number.
> So most likely the decision has been made to _not_ fill the gaps
> mentioned above in group a) any more.
> 
> Hence, I suggest to formally 'close' these gaps by establishing
> "Not Issued" entries.
> 
> Additionally, if the old RFC xx00 practice is confirmed as ceased
> definitely, the xx00 numbers might become candidates for assignment
> to 'normal' documents in the future.
> 
> Re b)
> 
> Apparently, RFC 3399 once has been delayed waiting for a decision
> on RFC 3333 being published or not.  I assume that RFC 3333 will
> _not_ be published any more.  So for the sake of continuity,
> preferably the draft for RFC 3399 (reportedly, it exists)
> should be finalized and published.
> 
> This would provide for a continuous style up to RFC 3599.
> 
> The decision to not publish more recent xx99 RFCs any more has
> never been announced firmly.
> 
> I suggest that either this decision be made now and corresponding
> "Not Issued" entries be filed for RFC xx99 with 'xx' > 35, or else
> it be confirmed on the list that the decision is still left open.
> 
> Additionally, if the old RFC xx99 practice is confirmed as ceased
> definitely, the xx99 numbers might become candidates for assignment
> to 'normal' documents in the future.
> 
> Re c)
> 
> Many of the RFC numbers listed above correspond to 'late' DNP
> decisions; sometimes successors have been produced before the
> RFCs could be published (e.g. 3907/3908).
> 
> I conjecture that for the majority of RFC numbers listed above
> (perhaps with exceptions for some 5??? numbers in the 3rd line),
> the decision already has been made, or can be made now, whether
> or not that number is still regarded for assignment to a document.
> 
> In the former case, that should be documented by filing the
> corresponding "Not Issued" entry.
> 
> 
> Kind regards,
>   Alfred HÎnes.
> 
> -- 
> 
> +------------------------+--------------------------------------------+
> | TR-Sys Alfred Hoenes   |  Alfred Hoenes   Dipl.-Math., Dipl.-Phys.  |
> | Gerlinger Strasse 12   |  Phone: (+49)7156/9635-0, Fax: -18         |
> | D-71254  Ditzingen     |  E-Mail:  ah at TR-Sys.de                     |
> +------------------------+--------------------------------------------+


More information about the rfc-interest mailing list