Since people thought I was merely being amusing, instead of also
intending to make a point, let me rephrase in a dry, dull, and
serious tone, so I'm no longer told it was "very amusing, but not
There exist a few protocols based around mDNS and DNS-SD, in
particular in combination, and the general high-level design of both
protocols is essentially sound. These are sometimes standards-track
specifications of the IETF - I seem to recall some of the SIP related
protocols are DNS-SD/mDNS based. In other SDOs, there are also
standards track specifications based around the combination, such as
the XSF's XEP-0174 - http://www.xmpp.org/extensions/xep-0174.html -
and these are also reliant on a stable, well-specified, protocol. To
my mind, this implies that both specifications need to be standards
track, if that status has any meaning at all - and I firmly believe
it should and does.
Unfortunately, the specification of both of them suffers in,
essentially, the same ways.
- They use RFC 2119 language in an informational specification, which
at the least carries with it a strong implication that the intent is
to specify a standard.
- They repeat the base specifications they refer to, and even in some
cases contradict, for unclear benefit. (For example in mDNS, the
mandatory requirement to use compression in the first label of an SRV
- A considerable amount of space is given over to Apple trademarks,
which I confess to finding deeply irritating. mDNS is not nearly so
bad as DNS-SD in this regard, but this still applies. I have no
problem with acknowledging the input of Apple here, but there's a
thin line between acknowledgement and outright product placement.
In summary, I think both specifications would derive enormous benefit
from WG-level review and experienced specification-crafting. This
need not result in any changes which are not backwards compatible -
indeed, I find it unlikely given the levels of deployment that exist.
FWIW, I see no need to go through an extensive BOF process, and -
again given the levels of deployment - I'd anticipate rapid progress
through the standards-track ought to be possible.
Dave Cridland - mailto:dave(_at_)cridland(_dot_)net -
Infotrope Polymer - ACAP, IMAP, ESMTP, and Lemonade
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