[gnso-rds-pdp-wg] RDAP for Registration Data Service Upgrade?

Carlton Samuels carlton.samuels at gmail.com
Wed May 25 16:49:01 UTC 2016

Excellent! Couldn't have done better meself.

That last paragraph says it succinctly, especially when the term 'richer
data' embraces the reality of IDNs.


Carlton A Samuels
Mobile: 876-818-1799
*Strategy, Planning, Governance, Assessment & Turnaround*

On Wed, May 25, 2016 at 9:39 AM, Andrew Sullivan <ajs at anvilwalrusden.com>

> On Wed, May 25, 2016 at 02:15:38PM +0000, nathalie coupet via
> gnso-rds-pdp-wg wrote:
> > Could we have a brief explanation of why RDAP is the better protocol of
> them all?
> Sure.  See below.
> > If we decide that an RDDS is needed, we’re going to have to find a way
> to provide that service using one of the options (WHOIS, WHOIS++, RWHOIS,
> IRIS, or RDAP) that are already available. RDAP is our best option.
> Whois barely qualifies as a protocol.  It listens on port 43 for
> input, and returns something.  It is not clear whether it can do
> internationalization at all, and it was certainly created in a period
> when ASCII was the norm on the network.  The output is intended to be
> consumed by humans.  There is no authentication in the system, so only
> anonymous query sources are possible.
> Whois++ and rwhois were two different attempts to fix up whois to
> support the multi-registrar system.  I could go into detail on this,
> but you said "short" and it would take a long mail.  A sort of blend
> of these two is what we use today.  The output is still intended to be
> consumed by humans and there's still no authentication.  Rwhois is how
> we ended up with breakage about where to start looking for the right
> server -- the information had to be coded into the clients, and
> clients hang around for years, so it became very easy to ask the wrong
> server for information.
> IRIS is a protocol from the early 2000s that the IETF developed in
> response to a request by ICANN; it was basically intended to be the
> "directory service" side of the then-new Extensible Provisioning
> Protocol for registrations.  It is a failure: I know of exactly one
> registry that ever implemented any part of it, and no registry that
> did the whole thing.  It's complicated to implement because a
> programmer of it needs to implement the low-level transport parts;
> this is probably why it failed to get much traction.
> RDAP is the most recent re-do of this effort.  It is JSON based so it
> is parsable by computers as well as displayable to humans.  You get
> authentication for free, because it's a RESTful system so it uses HTTP(S)
> as its underlying protocol.  The RIRs are already deploying it.
> The only one of these that is even a candidate is RDAP.  The whois
> variants can't authenticate the source of the query, which means they
> have no way to provide different responses to different people (and
> therefore they can't provide richer data to those who actually need
> it, and a default minimal data set for anonymous queries).  IRIS is a
> failed protocol.  The idea that we need to analyse this or consider it
> or anything of the kind is mind-boggling.
> A
> --
> Andrew Sullivan
> ajs at anvilwalrusden.com
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