IETF 79 Proceedings

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Network Configuration (netconf) (WG)

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In addition to this official charter maintained by the IETF Secretariat, there is additional information about this working group on the Web at:
Additional NETCONF Web Page

Additional information is available at tools.ietf.org/wg/netconf

Chair(s):

Operations and Management Area Director(s):

Operations and Management Area Advisor:

Technical Advisor(s):

Meeting Slides

Internet-Drafts:

Request for Comments:

Charter (as of 2010-08-31)

Configuration of networks of devices has become a critical requirement
for operators in today's highly interoperable networks. Operators from
large to small have developed their own mechanisms or used vendor
specific mechanisms to transfer configuration data to and from a
device, and for examining device state information which may impact
the configuration. Each of these mechanisms may be different in
various aspects, such as session establishment, user authentication,
configuration data exchange, and error responses.

The NETCONF Working Group has produced a protocol suitable for
network configuration, with the following characteristics:

- Provides retrieval mechanisms which can differentiate between
configuration data and non-configuration data
- Is extensible enough so that vendors can provide access to all
configuration data on the device using a single protocol
- Has a programmatic interface (avoids screen scraping and
formatting-related changes between releases)
- Uses an XML-based data representation, that can be easily
manipulated using non-specialized XML manipulation tools.
- Supports integration with existing user authentication methods
- Supports integration with existing configuration database systems
- Supports multiple (e.g. candidate and running) data-stores to
optimize configuration preparation and activation
- Supports network wide configuration transactions (with features such
as locking and rollback capability)
- Runs over a secure transport; SSH is mandatory to implement
while TLS, BEEP, and SOAP are optional transports.
- Provides support for asynchronous notifications.

The NETCONF protocol has been designed independent of the data
modeling language. The IETF recommends to use YANG as the NETCONF
modeling language, which introduces advanced language features for
configuration management.

In the current phase of the incremental development of NETCONF the
workgroup will focus on following items:

1. NETCONF implementations have shown that the specification in
RFC4741 is not 100% clear and has lead to different interpretations

and implementations. Also some errors have been uncovered. So the
WG will do an rfc4741bis with following constraints:

- bug fixes are to be done
- clarifications can be done
- extensions can be done only when needed to fix bugs
or inconsistencies (i.e. we are not doing a NETCONF V2)
- The work was started based on the discussion in IETF #73 (see
http://www.ietf.org/proceedings/08nov/slides/netconf-3.pdf).

2. A technical errata has been posted on rfc4742. The work on
rfc4741bis also uncovered some additional fixes/clarifications that
need to be made to rfc4742, the WG has been working on rfc4742bis
and is nearly done with this work item.

3. Netconf Access Control Model (NACM) Requirements and Solution.

There is a need for standard mechanisms to restrict
NETCONF protocol access for authenticated users to a pre-
configured (by operator) subset of all available NETCONF
operations and content.

The WG will produce a document which identifies the access
control requirements specific to the NETCONF protocol, as
defined in [4741bis]. This document will also provide a
standard YANG data model which addresses these
requirements.

It is possible that the WG will not reach solution consensus
on every possible requirement identified in the document.
In this case, it is expected that the solution will evolve
over time to meet the the remaining unmet requirements.

4. The NETCONF server may want to notify interested clients about
particular NETCONF protocol/server events. The WG will work on
a NETCONF specific YANG module(s) to define suitable
notifications.

5. As implementation and deployment experience gained with the
NETCONF monitoring data model, the WG may revise the NETCONF
monitoring data model to add additional objects that can be used
to check the status of the server and to discover additional
information about the server implementation. The WG may choose
to revise the NETCONF monitoring data model.

Goals and Milestones:

Done  Working Group formed
Done  Submit initial Netconf Protocol draft
Done  Submit initial Netconf over (transport-TBD) draft
Done  Begin Working Group Last Call for the Netconf Protocol draft
Done  Begin Working Group Last Call for the Netconf over (transport-TBD) draft
Done  Submit final version of the Netconf Protocol draft to the IESG
Done  Submit final version of the Netconf over SOAP draft to the IESG
Done  Submit final version of the Netconf over BEEP draft to the IESG
Done  Submit final version of the Netconf over SSH draft to the IESG
Done  Update charter
Done  Submit first version of NETCONF Notifications document
Done  Begin WGLC of NETCONF Notifications document
Done  Submit final version of NETCONF Notifications document to IESG for consideration as Proposed Standard
Done  -00 draft for NETCONF Monitoring
Done  -00 draft for Fine Grain Locking
Done  -00 draft for NETCONF over TLS
Done  -00 draft for Schema Advertisement
Done  Early Review of client authentication approach (for NETCONF over TLS) with the security community at IETF 71
Done  WG Last Call on NETCONF Monitoring after IETF72
Done  WG Last Call on NETCONF over TLS after IETF72
Done  WG Last Call on Fine Grain Locking after IETF72
Done  Send Partial Locking to IESG for consideration as Proposed Standards
Done  Initial WG draft for with-defaults capability
Done  Initial WG draft for rfc4741bis
Done  WG Last Call on NETCONF Monitoring after IETF73
Done  Submit first WG draft for rfc4742bis
Aug 2010  WG Last Call on rfc4741bis
Aug 2010  Send with-defaults to IESG for consideration as Proposed Standard
Sep 2010  first WG draft (rev 00) on NACM posted
Sep 2010  rfc4741bis to IESG for consideration as Proposed Standard
Sep 2010  Send rfc4742bis to IESG for consideration as proposed Standard
Sep 2010  first WG draft (rev 00) on NETCONF specific YANG modules posted
Jan 2011  WGLC for NACM document
Jan 2011  WGLC for NETCONF specific notifications document
Mar 2011  (if needed last) WGLC for NACM document
Mar 2011  (if needed last) WGLC for NETCONF specific notifications document
Apr 2011  submit NACM document to IESG for consideration as Proposed Standard
Apr 2011  submit NETCONF specific notifications document to IESG for consideration as Proposed Standard