IETF IP Storage Working Group proposal/BOF

Costa Sapuntzakis csapuntz at
Tue Feb 22 13:15:51 PST 2000

* From the T10 Reflector (t10 at, posted by:
* Costa Sapuntzakis <csapuntz at>

Announcement of IP Storage (IPS) proposed working group

While file storage protocols like NFS and AFS have long operated over
IP-based networks, block storage protocols such as SCSI and ATA have
yet to make the leap from non-IP based interconnects to IP-based
networks. With the emergence of gigabit and 10-gigabit IP networks,
transporting block storage over IP networks is increasingly

An IETF working group is the right forum to deal with the many
technical issues associated with IP Storage. These issues include the

* A standard, interoperable, high-performance, reliable transport
  protocol for SCSI over IP is needed. Current thinking is that a simple
  protocol over TCP can do the job. Transport of ATA over IP is related,
  but there is no agreement as to need to support it.

* Methods for configuring and discovering storage devices need to be 
  defined. As part of the work, the group will need to determine whether
  and how to leverage other IETF work in this area (e.g. zeroconf, LDAP, 
  Service Location Protocol).

* Methods for the reduction of network stack processing overhead at
  the storage clients and servers need to be considered and possibly
  incorporated into the protocol

* Integration of secure communication mechanisms that support
  high-speed data transfer and restricted access to storage devices 
  -- leveraging existing security solutions (e.g., IPsec, SCSI 
  Access Control) whenever possible.

* Bridging to other SCSI-based interconnects (including Fibre Channel) 
  needs to be defined

* SNMP MIBs and/or CIM object models for SCSI-based devices may be necessary

* QoS issues need to be considered

* IPv6 and NAT interoperability

The ANSI T10, T11, and T13 committees currently control the SCSI,
Fibre Channel, and ATA storage standards. The working group will need
to determine the extent of its collaboration with those committees.

Some progress on these issues has been made already:

* To get the ball rolling, Julian Satran and others have posted a
  preliminary SCSI over TCP draft. It can be found at:

Birds of Feather (BOF)

To discuss these issues further and to gain consensus on a charter for
an IP Storage WG, the IETF will host a Birds of Feather (BOF) session
on IP Storage at the 47th IETF in Adelaide, Australia.

A proposed agenda for the BOF is appended to the message.

Mailing List

The ips at mailing list will act as the focal point for
discussions related to this activity. You can subscribe to
ips at by sending mail to majordomo at with a blank
Subject line and

subscribe ips

as the first line of the body.

Web Site

CMU is also maintaining an IPS web site. You can find archives
of the mailing lists, IPS documents, and more at

BOF agenda (proposed)

This will probably change before the final BOF:

5 min Review of BOF agenda and objectives (D. Lee/M. Bradley)
20 min IP Storage Goals (D. Nagle/A. Wilson)
35 min Discussion
20 min Approaches (5 minutes each)
o C. Sapuntzakis
o A. Wilson
o ISI's NetSCSI (?)
o Other (?)
10 min Proposed charter (D. Lee/M. Bradley)
30 min Discussion

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