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INTERNET-DRAFT                                         Kurt D. Zeilenga
Intended Category: Standard Track                   OpenLDAP Foundation
Expires in six months                                      5 March 2006


                            LDAP Transactions
                     <draft-zeilenga-ldap-txn-07.txt>


Status of Memo

  This document is intended to be, after appropriate review and
  revision, submitted to the IESG for consideration as a Proposed
  Standard.  Distribution of this memo is unlimited.  Technical
  discussion of this document will take place on the IETF LDAP
  Extensions mailing list <ldapext@ietf.org>.  Please send editorial
  comments directly to the author <Kurt@OpenLDAP.org>.

  By submitting this Internet-Draft, each author represents that any
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  Copyright (C) The Internet Society (2006).  All Rights Reserved.

  Please see the Full Copyright section near the end of this document
  for more information.


Abstract

  Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) update operations, such



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  as Add, Delete, and Modify operations, have atomic, consistency,
  isolation, durability (ACID) properties.  Each of these update
  operations act upon an entry.  However, It is often desirable to
  update two or more entries in a single unit of interaction, a
  transaction.  Transactions are necessary to support a number of
  applications including resource provisioning and information
  replication.  This document defines an LDAP extension to support
  transactions.


1. Overview

  This document extends the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP)
  [Roadmap] to allow clients to group a number of related update
  operations [Protocol] and have them preformed as one unit of
  interaction, a transaction.  As with distinct update operations, each
  transaction has atomic, consistency, isolation, and durability
  ([ACID]) properties.

  This extension consists of two extended operations, one control, and
  one unsolicited notification message.  The Start Transaction operation
  is used to obtain a transaction identifier.  This identifier is then
  attached to multiple update operations to indicate that they belong to
  transaction using the Transaction Specification control.  The End
  Transaction is used to settle (commit or abort) the transaction.  The
  Aborted Tranaction Notice is used notify the client the server is no
  longer willing or able to process an outstanding transaction.


1.1. Conventions and Terminology

  The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
  "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this
  document are to be interpreted as described in BCP 14 [RFC2119].

  Protocol elements are described using ASN.1 [X.680] with implicit
  tags.  The term "BER-encoded" means the element is to be encoded using
  the Basic Encoding Rules [X.690] under the restrictions detailed in
  Section 5.2 of [Protocol].

  DSA stands for "Directory System Agent" (a server).  DSE stands for
  "DSA-specific entry".


2.  Elements of an LDAP Transaction

2.1.  Start Transaction Request and Response




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  A Start Transaction Request is an LDAPMessage of CHOICE extendedReq
  where the requestName is IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.1 and the requestValue is
  absent.

  A Start Transaction Response is an LDAPMessage of CHOICE extendedRes
  sent in response to a Start Transaction Request.  Its responesName is
  absent.  When the resultCode is success, responseValue is present and
  contains a transaction identifier.  Otherwise, the responseValue is
  absent.


2.2.  Transaction Specification Control

  A Transaction Specification Control is an LDAPControl where the
  controlType is IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.2, the criticality is TRUE, and the
  controlValue is a transaction identifer.  The control is appropriate
  for update requests including Add, Delete, Modify, and ModifyDN
  requests [Protocol].

2.3.  End Transactions Request and Response

  An End Transaction Request is an LDAPMessage of CHOICE extendedReq
  where the requestName is IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.3 and the requestValue is
  present and contains a BER-encoded settlementValue.

       settlementValue ::= SEQUENCE {
            commit         BOOLEAN DEFAULT TRUE,
            identifier     OCTET STRING }

  A commit value of TRUE indicates a request to commit the transaction
  identified by the identifier.  A commit value of FALSE indicates a
  request to abort the identified transaction.

  An End Transaction Response is an LDAPMessage sent in response to a
  End Transaction Request.  Its response name is absent.  The
  responseValue when present contains a BER-encoded MessageID.


2.5. Aborted Transaction Notice

  The Aborted Transaction Notice is an Unsolicited Notification message
  where the responseName is IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.4 and responseValue is
  present and contains a transaction identifier.


3. An LDAP Transaction

3.1. Extension Discovery



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  To allow clients to discover support for this extension, servers
  implementing this specification SHOULD publish IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.1 and
  IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.3 as values of the 'supportedExtension' attribute
  [Models] within the Root DSE, and publish the IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.2 as a
  value of the 'supportedControl' attribute [Models] of the Root DSE.

  A server MAY choose to advertise this extension only when the client
  is authorized to use it.


3.2. Starting an Transactions

  A client wishing to preform a sequence of directory updates as an
  transaction issues a Start Transaction Request.  A server which is
  willing and able to support transactions responds to this request with
  a Start Transaction Response providing a transaction identifier and
  with a resultCode of success.  Otherwise, the server responds with a
  Start Transaction Response wth a result code other than success
  indicating the nature of the failure.

  The transaction identifier provided upon successful start of a
  transaction is used in subseqent protocol messages to identify this
  transaction.


3.3. Specification of a Transaction

  The client then may issue may issue one or more update (add, delete,
  modify, modifyDN) requests, each with a Transaction Specification
  control containing the transaction identifier indicating the updates
  are to processed as part of the transaction.  Each of these update
  request MUST have a different MessageId value.  If the server is
  unwilling or unable to attempt to process the requested update
  operation as part of the transaction, the server immediately returns
  the approrpiate response to the request with a resultCode indicating
  the nature of the failure.  Otherwise, the server immediately returns
  success and the defers further processing of the operation is then
  deferred until settlement.

  If the server becomes unwilling or unable to continue the
  specification of a transaction, the server issues an Aborted
  Transaction Notice with a non-success resultCode indicating the nature
  of the failure.  All operations that were to be processed as part of
  the transaction are implicitly abandoned.  Upon receipt of an Aborted
  Transaction Notice, the client is to discontinue all use of the
  transaction identifier as the transaction is null and void.  Any
  future use of identifier by the client will result in a response
  containing a non-success resultCode.



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3.4. Transaction Settlement

  A client requests settlement of transaction by issuing an End
  Transaction request for the transaction indicating whether it desires
  the transaction to be committed or aborted.

  Upon receipt of a request to abort the transaction, the server is to
  abort the identified transaction (abandoning all operations which are
  part of the transaction) and indicate that it has done so by returning
  an End Transaction response with a resultCode of success.

  Upon receipt of a request to commit the transaction, the server
  processes all update operations of the transaction as one atomic,
  isolated action with each requested update being processed in turn.
  Either all of the requested updates are to be successfully applied or
  none of the requested are to be applied.  The server returns an End
  Transaction Response with a resultCode of success and no responseValue
  to indicate all the requested updates were applied.  Otherwise, the
  server returns an End Transaction with an non-success resultCode
  indicating the nature of the failure.  If the failure is associated
  with a particular update request, a responseValue containing its
  MessageID is returned.  If the failure was not associated with any
  particular update request, no responseValue is returned.

  There is no requirement that a server serialize transactions, or
  updates requested outside of a transaction.  That is, a server MAY
  process multiple commit requests (from one or more clients) acting
  upon different sets of entries concurrently.   A server MUST avoid
  deadlock.


4. Distributed Directory Considerations

  The LDAP/X.500 models provide for distributed directory operations
  including server-side chaining and client-side chasing of operations.

  This document does not preclude servers from chaining operations which
  are part of a transaction.  However, if a server does allow such
  chaining, it MUST ensure that transaction semantics are provided.

  This mechanism defined by this document does not support client-side
  chasing.  Grouping cookies used to identify the transaction are
  specific to a particular client/server session.

  The LDAP/X.500 models provide for a single-master/multiple-shadow
  replication architecture.  This document states no requirement that
  changes made to the directory based upon processing a transaction be
  replicated as one atomic action.  That is, the client SHOULD NOT



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  assume tight data consistency nor fast data convergence at shadow
  servers unless they have prior knowledge that such service is
  provided.  Though this mechanism could be used to support replication,
  use in replication is not described in this document.

  The LDAP/X.500 models do not currently support a multi-master
  replication architecture and, hence, not considered by this
  specification.


5. Security Considerations

  Transactions mechanisms may be the target of denial of service
  attacks.  Implementors should provide safeguards to ensure these
  mechanisms are not abused.

  General security considerations [Roadmap], especially associated with
  update operations [Protocol], apply to this extension.


6. IANA Considerations

  In accordance with [BCP64bis], it is requested that Internet Assigned
  Numbers Authority (IANA) make the following assignments.


6.1.  Object Identifier

  Assignment of an LDAP Object Identifier to identify the protocol
  elements specified in this document this document is requested.

      Subject: Request for LDAP Object Identifier Registration
      Person & email address to contact for further information:
          Kurt Zeilenga <kurt@OpenLDAP.org>
      Specification: RFC XXXX
      Author/Change Controller: IESG
      Comments: Identifies protocol elements for LDAP Transactions


6.2.  LDAP Protocol Mechanism

  Registration of the protocol mechanisms specified in this document is
  requested.

  Subject: Request for LDAP Protocol Mechanism Registration
  Object Identifier: see table
  Description: see table
  Person & email address to contact for further information:



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       Kurt Zeilenga <kurt@openldap.org>
  Specification: RFC XXXX
  Author/Change Controller: IESG
  Comments:

  Object Identifier   Type  Description
  ------------------- ----  -----------------------------------------
  IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.1 E     Start Transaction Extended Request
  IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.2 C     Transaction Specification Control
  IANA-ASSIGNED-OID.3 E     End Transaction Extended Request


7. Acknowledgments

  The author gratefully acknowledges the contributions made by members
  of the Internet Engineering Task Force.


8. Author's Address

  Kurt D. Zeilenga
  OpenLDAP Foundation

  Email: Kurt@OpenLDAP.org


9. References

  [[Note to the RFC Editor: please replace the citation tags used in
  referencing Internet-Drafts with tags of the form RFCnnnn where
  possible.]]


9.1. Normative References

  [RFC2119]     Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
                Requirement Levels", BCP 14 (also RFC 2119), March 1997.

  [Roadmap]     Zeilenga, K. (editor), "LDAP: Technical Specification
                Road Map", draft-ietf-ldapbis-roadmap-xx.txt, a work in
                progress.

  [Protocol]    Sermersheim, J. (editor), "LDAP: The Protocol",
                draft-ietf-ldapbis-protocol-xx.txt, a work in progress.

  [Models]      Zeilenga, K. (editor), "LDAP: Directory Information
                Models", draft-ietf-ldapbis-models-xx.txt, a work in
                progress.



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  [X.680]       International Telecommunication Union -
                Telecommunication Standardization Sector, "Abstract
                Syntax Notation One (ASN.1) - Specification of Basic
                Notation", X.680(2002) (also ISO/IEC 8824-1:2002).

  [X.690]       International Telecommunication Union -
                Telecommunication Standardization Sector, "Specification
                of ASN.1 encoding rules: Basic Encoding Rules (BER),
                Canonical Encoding Rules (CER), and Distinguished
                Encoding Rules (DER)", X.690(2002) (also ISO/IEC
                8825-1:2002).


9.2. Informative References

  [ACID]        Section 4 of ISO/IEC 10026-1:1992.

  [BCP64bis]    Zeilenga, K., "IANA Considerations for LDAP",
                draft-ietf-ldapbis-bcp64-xx.txt, a work in progress.

  [X.500]       International Telecommunication Union -
                Telecommunication Standardization Sector, "The Directory
                -- Overview of concepts, models and services,"
                X.500(1993) (also ISO/IEC 9594-1:1994).

  [X.501]       International Telecommunication Union -
                Telecommunication Standardization Sector, "The Directory
                -- Models," X.501(1993) (also ISO/IEC 9594-2:1994).



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