Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)

Definition of Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) in The Network Encyclopedia.

What is IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force)?

An international community of networking engineers, network administrators, researchers, and vendors whose goal is to ensure the smooth operation and evolution of the Internet. The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) receives its charter from the Internet Society (ISOC), and its daily operations are overseen by the Internet Architecture Board (IAB).

The work of the IETF is performed by a number of working groups who are dedicated to such aspects of the Internet as routing, operations and management, transport, security, applications, and user services. These working groups interact primarily through mailing lists and are managed by area directors who belong to the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).

Some working groups develop extensions and newer versions of familiar protocols such as Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP), Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP), Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP), Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP), and Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). Others develop new protocols such as the Common Indexing Protocol, Internet Open Trading Protocol, and the Internet Printing Protocol.

The working groups produce documents called Internet Drafts, which have a life span of six months, after which they must be deleted, updated, or established as a Request for Comments (RFC) document.

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