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draft-finseth-url



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                                                              C. Finseth
INTERNET-DRAFT                               U.S. Satellite Broadcasting
                                                              April 1999


                          The "eid" URL Scheme
                        draft-finseth-url-00.txt

This document is an Internet-Draft and is in full conformance with all
provisions of Section 10 of RFC2026.

Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering Task
Force (IETF), its areas, and its working groups.  Note that other groups
may also distribute working documents as Internet-Drafts.

Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet- Drafts as reference material
or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

The list of current Internet-Drafts can be accessed at
http://www.ietf.org/ietf/1id-abstracts.txt

The list of Internet-Draft Shadow Directories can be accessed at
http://www.ietf.org/shadow.html.

This document expires 30 September 1999.

Status of this Memo

   This memo provides information for the Internet community.  This memo
   does not specify an Internet standard of any kind.  Distribution of
   this memo is unlimited.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (C) The Internet Society (1999).  All Rights Reserved.

Abstract

   This document defines a new URL scheme, "eid".  This scheme provides
   a mechanism by which the local application can reference data that
   has been obtained by other, non-URL scheme means.  The scheme is
   intended to provide a general escape mechanism to allow access to
   information for applications that are too specialized to justify
   their own schemes.

Description



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   Some computer systems have more than one mechansim for obtaining
   data.  The data arrive at different times and use different methods
   for labelling the information.  The "eid" ("External ID") URL schema
   provides a mechanism for a URL-aware application to specify the
   identity of this external data.

   The URLs are of the form:

                             eid:<identifier>

   The characters of the <identifier> must drawn from the standard URL
   character set.

   The <identifier> is interpreted in the application's environment and
   is meaningful only in that environment.  It follows that construction
   of the <identifier> requires knowledge of the application's
   environment.

   This schema does not specify the mechanism used to acquire the data
   referenced by the <identifier>.  It assumes that either that data is
   already available to the application or the <identifier> contains
   enough information to allow the application to obtain the data.

   In sufficiently rich application environments there may be more than
   one conceptual address space.  Such environments may wish to use
   identifiers of the form:

                        <selector>/<sub-identifier>

   although any form is acceptable.

Syntax

      eidurl     := "eid:" identifier
      identifier := *urlchar

   where "urlchar" is imported from [RFC2396].

Examples

   One use of the eid schema would be to access data stored in
   application memory.  In this case, the <identifier> could specify a
   memory address.  For example, if there were three fixed buffers at
   addresses 0x00001000, 0x00002000, and 0x00003000, they could be
   accessed by:

      eid:0x00001000
      eid:0x00002000



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      eid:0x00003000

   Another example might be an application that reads stock market
   quotations and stores the current values in a mini-database indexed
   by the ticker symbol.  For example:

      eid:EK               for Eastman Kodak Company
      eid:F                for Ford Motor Company

   A third example might be a dialup application where the <identifier>
   specifies a telephone number, login sequence, and remote command to
   execute.  It might look like:

      eid:555-1212,sample_user,sample_password,sample_command

Security Considerations

   The very nature of this schema is to provide an escape mechanism and
   by definition there cannot be a generic implementation of such a
   mechanism.  Thus, many URL-aware applications will not implement this
   schema and so have no increased exposure.

   Those applications that do implement this schema will do so in
   application-specific ways.  Hence, there cannot be an "across-the-
   board" exposure from this schema.  However, each application that
   does implement this schema will have to provide its own security.

References

   [RFC2396] Berners-Lee, T., Fielding, R., and L. Masinter,
             "Uniform Resource Identifiers (URI): Generic Syntax", RFC
             2396, August 1998.

Author's Address

   Craig A. Finseth
   U.S. Satellite Broadcasting
   3415 University Ave
   St Paul MN 55114

   Phone: +1 651-659-7162

   EMail: craig@finseth.com

Full Copyright Statement

   Copyright (C) The Internet Society (1999).  All Rights Reserved.




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   This document and translations of it may be copied and furnished to
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   or assist in its implmentation may be prepared, copied, published and
   distributed, in whole or in part, without restriction of any kind,
   provided that the above copyright notice and this paragraph are
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   The limited permissions granted above are perpetual and will not be
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   "AS IS" basis and THE INTERNET SOCIETY AND THE INTERNET ENGINEERING
   TASK FORCE DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING
   BUT NOT LIMITED TO ANY WARRANTY THAT THE USE OF THE INFORMATION
   HEREIN WILL NOT INFRINGE ANY RIGHTS OR ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF
   MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE."

   This document expires 30 September 1999.


























Finseth                                                         [Page 4]