Domain Name System (dns)
Charter Status: Concluded March, 1994 Chair(s): IAB IAB Description of Working Group: The DNS Working Group is concerned with the design, operation, and evolution of the Domain Name System within the Internet. As the Internet continues to grow, we expect to serve as a focal point for work on scaling problems within the current framework, work on protocol evolution as new mechanisms become necessary, and documentation of current practice for DNS implementors and administrators. We are also responsible for oversight of DNS activities by other groups within the IETF to the extent that we review the impact such work will have on the DNS and make recomendations to the working groups and IESG as necessary. Since some of these are ongoing tasks, we do not expect the working group to disband anytime soon. Several issues are of particular concern at this time: Scaling: The DNS is the victim of its own success. The global DNS namespace has grown to the point where administering the top levels of the tree is nearly as much work as the old NIC host table used to be. We need to work on ways to distribute the load. Some of the solutions are likely to be technical, some political or economic; we still treat the top-level DNS service the way we did when DARPA was footing the bill, and the funding for that service is in the process of going away. Security: The DNS is a zero-security system; it is not even as strong as the IP layer above which it operates. As a result, accidental spoofing (cache pollution) is an all-too-frequent occurance. We need to make the DNS more robust against accidental corruption, and must provide at least an optional authentication mechanism for that portion of the community that wants one. At the same time, we must not cripple the existing system by drasticly increasing its bandwidth consumption or by mandating use of cryptographic techniques that would preclude worldwide distribution of DNS software. The global DNS database is exactly that, an existing world-wide database representing hosts on six continents and (at least) forty-five countries. A solution that does not take this into account is not acceptable. Management: The group has a draft document describing MIB extensions to manage the DNS. It also needs to specify a standard way to dynamically create and destroy DNS records; SNMP may be an appropriate tool for this task, but we haven't yet specified enough of the details to know for certain. The impact that a dynamic update mechanism will have on the DNS needs to be examined, with particular attention given to security and scaling issues. IPng/Routing: As the fur starts flying in the battle between the IPng proponants and the new-routing-architecture proponants, it is expected that groups on both sides will need some amount of support from the DNS. Such support is likely to be minimal and straightforward, but these proposals are likely to need ``rush service'' for whatever support they require. So the working group needs to monitor these activities, stay involved, and generally do what it can to make sure that DNS support is not a bottleneck. The DNS Working Group also needs to examine the impact that any proposed IPng system would have on the DNS, since the DNS database and protocols have special provision for IP addresses.
Request for Comments: