2.8.4 User Services (uswg)

NOTE: This charter is a snapshot of the 39th IETF Meeting in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. It may now be out-of-date.


Joyce K. Reynolds <jkrey@isi.edu>

User Services Area Director(s):

Joyce K. Reynolds <jkrey@isi.edu>

User Services Area Advisor:

Joyce K. Reynolds <jkrey@isi.edu>

Mailing Lists:

General Discussion: uswg@isi.edu
To Subscribe: uswg-request@isi.edu
Archive: ftp://ftp.near.net/mail-archives/us-wg*

Description of Working Group:

The User Services Working Group of the IETF provides a regular forum for people interested in all levels of user services to identify and initiate projects designed to improve the quality of information available to users of the Internet. Actual projects themselves are handled by separate groups, usually through IETF working groups, or through liaisons with international organizations such as TERENA's (Trans-European Research and Education Network Association) Information Services and User Support.

(1) Meet on a regular basis to consider projects designed to improve services to users. In general, projects should:

· Clearly address user assistance needs;

· Produce an end-result (e.g., a document, a program plan, etc.);

· Have a reasonably clear approach to achieving the end-result (with an estimated time for completion);

· Not duplicate existing or previous efforts.

(2) Create working groups or other focus groups to carry out projects deemed worthy of pursuing.

(3) Provide a forum in which user services providers can discuss and identify common concerns.

This is an active, on-going working group in the USV area of the IETF. It is the spawning ground for establishing other working groups in this area.

No Goals and Milestones
No Current Internet-Drafts
Request For Comments:







F.Y.I. on F.Y.I.: Introduction to the F.Y.I. notes



Answers to Commonly asked ``Experienced Internet User'' Questions



FYI on ``What is the Internet?''



FYI on Questions and Answer Answers to Commonly asked ``New Internet User'' Questions

Current Meeting Report

Minutes of the User Services Working Group Meeting

Chair: Joyce K. Reynolds/ISI (jkrey@isi.edu)

A report on IETF User Services Area activities was presented by Joyce Reynolds, which included news on related USV Area FYI RFC publications and current Internet-Drafts since the last IETF.

The Humanities and the Arts (HARTS) Working Group has shut down. It has the following Internet-Draft in its final stages of editing before being sent on to the IESG: draft-ietf-harts-guide-03.txt.

The Site Security Handbook (SSH) Working Group has the following Internet-Drafts in process:

· Draft-ietf-ssh-handbook-05.txt (**Note: This was approved by the IESG for FYI RFC publication on 28 August 97. It will replace/obsolete RFC 1244.)
· draft-ietf-ssh-overview-00.txt
· draft-ietf-ssh-users-01.txt

The Responsible Use of the Net (RUN) Working Group has the following Internet-Draft in process and review: draft-ietf-run-spew-01.txt.

The STDGUIDE Working Group, which is a joint Ops/Mgt and USV project is close to completing its Internet-Draft: draft-ietf-stdguide-ops-04.txt.

Reports on related global liaison group activities were presented. Sepi Boroumand (on behalf of Tom Newell) mentioned that an InterNIC newsletter was being prepared and would soon be ready for distribution. For more information, see: http://rs.internic.net/nic-support.

Amy Wells provided Internet Scout updates/activities, including their Scout Report, Net Happenings, and KIDS project. For additional information: http://wwwscout.cs.wisc.edu/scout.

George Munroe provided a presentation and discussion on the TERENA/IETF ETINU Project. ETINU (Environment To Inspire Network Users) has established background ideas and a workplan to identify tools and standards for effective online user support. This project is being driven by a joint TERENA/IETF endeavor. The widest possible input is desirable to:

· Define present difficulties in the provision of user support
· Identify what software can provide effective solutions
· Establish a forum for promoting awareness of what has already been done at different sites and what could be done with this software

The key objectives are:

· Address the need for scalable user support
· Optimize effort by integrating online support with existing documentation and other online support material
· Promote interoperability between support systems at different sites

The workplan deliverables include:

· A survey to collect evidence on current practice
· A report on the survey publicizing user support requirements and available solutions
· A list of software modules or building blocks' for online user support.

A final publication will describe these modules with comprehensive recommendations for implementation so that a degree of standardization, quality and interworking, can be proposed. At the very least, the publication of an FYI RFC from ETINU would appear to be the most appropriate vehicle for this.

A small amount of funding is being sought from TERENA to complete the workplan within the next nine months. A questionnaire for the survey has been prepared and is available for comment at: http://www.terena.nl/task-forces/tf-etinu/questionnaire.html.

It was agreed that close liaison between the TERENA and IETF USWG would be reinforced by nominating a USWG person to work closely with the task force leaders. By the December IETF meeting the survey will be underway and the first returns will be described along with a draft outline of the survey report.

To join the ETINU discussion list, send an email message to: mailserver@terena.nl containing the text: subscribe tf-etinu 'your real name' replacing 'your real name' as appropriate.

The ETINU web pages are available at: http://www.terena.nl/task-forces/tf-etinu/.

The rest of the session focused on the USWG's document update project of FYI 4, RFC 1594 ("FYI on Questions and Answers: Answers to Commonly asked "New Internet User" Questions"). This was lead by Sepi Boroumand, with additional assistance by April Marine and USWG attendees. The document under update and review is available at: ftp://ftp.isi.edu/in-notes/fyi/fyi4.txt.


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