Request for Comments

Publication of the development and standards for the Internet / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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A Request for Comments (RFC) is a publication in a series from the principal technical development and standards-setting bodies for the Internet, most prominently the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).[1][2] An RFC is authored by individuals or groups of engineers and computer scientists in the form of a memorandum describing methods, behaviors, research, or innovations applicable to the working of the Internet and Internet-connected systems. It is submitted either for peer review or to convey new concepts, information, or, occasionally, engineering humor.[3]

The IETF adopts some of the proposals published as RFCs as Internet Standards. However, many RFCs are informational or experimental in nature and are not standards.[4] The RFC system was invented by Steve Crocker in 1969 to help record unofficial notes on the development of ARPANET. RFCs have since become official documents of Internet specifications, communications protocols, procedures, and events.[5] According to Crocker, the documents "shape the Internet's inner workings and have played a significant role in its success", but are not widely known outside the community.[6]

Outside of the Internet community, other documents also called requests for comments have been published, as in U.S. Federal government work, such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.[7]

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