[Docs] [txt|pdf] [draft-ietf-rmt-pi...] [Diff1] [Diff2]

PROPOSED STANDARD

Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)                           M. Luby
Request for Comments: 5775                                     M. Watson
Obsoletes: 3450                                              L. Vicisano
Category: Standards Track                                 Qualcomm, Inc.
ISSN: 2070-1721                                               April 2010


        Asynchronous Layered Coding (ALC) Protocol Instantiation

Abstract

   This document describes the Asynchronous Layered Coding (ALC)
   protocol, a massively scalable reliable content delivery protocol.
   Asynchronous Layered Coding combines the Layered Coding Transport
   (LCT) building block, a multiple rate congestion control building
   block and the Forward Error Correction (FEC) building block to
   provide congestion controlled reliable asynchronous delivery of
   content to an unlimited number of concurrent receivers from a single
   sender.  This document obsoletes RFC 3450.

Status of This Memo

   This is an Internet Standards Track document.

   This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force
   (IETF).  It represents the consensus of the IETF community.  It has
   received public review and has been approved for publication by the
   Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  Further information on
   Internet Standards is available in Section 2 of RFC 5741.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at
   http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc5775.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2010 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.



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RFC 5775               ALC Protocol Instantiation             April 2010


   This document may contain material from IETF Documents or IETF
   Contributions published or made publicly available before November
   10, 2008.  The person(s) controlling the copyright in some of this
   material may not have granted the IETF Trust the right to allow
   modifications of such material outside the IETF Standards Process.
   Without obtaining an adequate license from the person(s) controlling
   the copyright in such materials, this document may not be modified
   outside the IETF Standards Process, and derivative works of it may
   not be created outside the IETF Standards Process, except to format
   it for publication as an RFC or to translate it into languages other
   than English.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  3
     1.1.  Delivery Service Models  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
     1.2.  Scalability  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
     1.3.  Environmental Requirements and Considerations  . . . . . .  5
   2.  Architecture Definition  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  5
     2.1.  LCT Building Block . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  7
     2.2.  Multiple Rate Congestion Control Building Block  . . . . .  9
     2.3.  FEC Building Block . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
     2.4.  Session Description  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
     2.5.  Packet Authentication Building Block . . . . . . . . . . . 12
   3.  Conformance Statement  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
   4.  Functionality Definition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
     4.1.  Packet Format Used by ALC  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
     4.2.  LCT Header Extension Fields  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
     4.3.  Sender Operation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
     4.4.  Receiver Operation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
   5.  Security Considerations  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
     5.1.  Baseline Secure ALC Operation  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
       5.1.1.  IPsec Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
       5.1.2.  IPsec Requirements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
   6.  IANA Considerations  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
   7.  Acknowledgments  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
   8.  Changes from RFC 3450  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
   9.  References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
     9.1.  Normative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
     9.2.  Informative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23











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1.  Introduction

   This document describes a massively scalable reliable content
   delivery protocol, Asynchronous Layered Coding (ALC), for multiple
   rate congestion controlled reliable content delivery.  The protocol
   is specifically designed to provide massive scalability using IP
   multicast as the underlying network service.  Massive scalability in
   this context means the number of concurrent receivers for an object
   is potentially in the millions, the aggregate size of objects to be
   delivered in a session ranges from hundreds of kilobytes to hundreds
   of gigabytes, each receiver can initiate reception of an object
   asynchronously, the reception rate of each receiver in the session is
   the maximum fair bandwidth available between that receiver and the
   sender, and all of this can be supported using a single sender.

   Because ALC is focused on reliable content delivery, the goal is to
   deliver objects as quickly as possible to each receiver while at the
   same time remaining network friendly to competing traffic.  Thus, the
   congestion control used in conjunction with ALC should strive to
   maximize use of available bandwidth between receivers and the sender
   while at the same time backing off aggressively in the face of
   competing traffic.

   The sender side of ALC consists of generating packets based on
   objects to be delivered within the session and sending the
   appropriately formatted packets at the appropriate rates to the
   channels associated with the session.  The receiver side of ALC
   consists of joining appropriate channels associated with the session,
   performing congestion control by adjusting the set of joined channels
   associated with the session in response to detected congestion, and
   using the packets to reliably reconstruct objects.  All information
   flow in an ALC session is in the form of data packets sent by a
   single sender to channels that receivers join to receive data.

   ALC does specify the Session Description needed by receivers before
   they join a session, but the mechanisms by which receivers obtain
   this required information is outside the scope of ALC.  An
   application that uses ALC may require that receivers report
   statistics on their reception experience back to the sender, but the
   mechanisms by which receivers report back statistics is outside the
   scope of ALC.  In general, ALC is designed to be a minimal protocol
   instantiation that provides reliable content delivery without
   unnecessary limitations to the scalability of the basic protocol.

   This document is a product of the IETF RMT WG and follows the general
   guidelines provided in [RFC3269].





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   A previous version of this document was published in the
   "Experimental" category as [RFC3450] and is obsoleted by this
   document.

   This Proposed Standard specification is thus based on and backwards
   compatible with the protocol defined in [RFC3450] updated according
   to accumulated experience and growing protocol maturity since its
   original publication.  Said experience applies both to this
   specification itself and to congestion control strategies related to
   the use of this specification.

   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].

1.1.  Delivery Service Models

   ALC can support several different reliable content delivery service
   models as described in [RFC5651].

1.2.  Scalability

   Massive scalability is a primary design goal for ALC.  IP multicast
   is inherently massively scalable, but the best effort service that it
   provides does not provide session management functionality,
   congestion control, or reliability.  ALC provides all of this on top
   of IP multicast without sacrificing any of the inherent scalability
   of IP multicast.  ALC has the following properties:

   o  To each receiver, it appears as if there is a dedicated session
      from the sender to the receiver, where the reception rate adjusts
      to congestion along the path from sender to receiver.

   o  To the sender, there is no difference in load or outgoing rate if
      one receiver or a million (or any number of) receivers are joined
      to the session, independent of when the receivers join and leave.

   o  No feedback packets are required from receivers to the sender.

   o  Almost all packets in the session that pass through a bottleneck
      link are utilized by downstream receivers, and the session shares
      the link with competing flows fairly in proportion to their
      utility.

   Thus, ALC provides a massively scalable content delivery transport
   that is network friendly.





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   ALC intentionally omits any application-specific features that could
   potentially limit its scalability.  By doing so, ALC provides a
   minimal protocol that is massively scalable.  Applications may be
   built on top of ALC to provide additional features that may limit the
   scalability of the application.  Such applications are outside the
   scope of this document.

1.3.  Environmental Requirements and Considerations

   All of the environmental requirements and considerations that apply
   to the LCT building block [RFC5651], the FEC building block
   [RFC5052], the multiple rate congestion control building block, and
   to any additional building blocks that ALC uses also apply to ALC.

   The IP multicast model defined in [RFC1112] is commonly known as Any-
   Source Multicast (ASM), in contrast to Source-Specific Multicast
   (SSM) which is defined in [RFC3569].  One issue that is specific to
   ALC with respect to ASM is the way the multiple rate congestion
   control building block interacts with ASM.  The congestion control
   building block may use the measured difference in time between when a
   join to a channel is sent and when the first packet from the channel
   arrives in determining the receiver reception rate.  The congestion
   control building block may also use packet sequence numbers per
   channel to measure losses, and this is also used to determine the
   receiver reception rate.  These features raise two concerns with
   respect to ASM: The time difference between when the join to a
   channel is sent and when the first packet arrives can be significant
   due to the use of Rendezvous Points (RPs) and the Multicast Source
   Discovery Protocol (MSDP) [RFC3618] protocol, and packets can be lost
   in the switch over from the (*,G) join to the RP and the (S,G) join
   directly to the sender.  Both of these issues could potentially
   substantially degrade the reception rate of receivers.  To ameliorate
   these concerns, it is recommended during deployment to ensure that
   the RP be as close to the sender as possible.  SSM does not share
   these same concerns.  For a fuller consideration of these issues,
   consult the multiple rate congestion control building block.

2.  Architecture Definition

   ALC uses the LCT building block [RFC5651] to provide in-band session
   management functionality.  ALC uses a multiple rate congestion
   control building block that is compliant with [RFC2357] to provide
   congestion control that is feedback free.  Receivers adjust their
   reception rates individually by joining and leaving channels
   associated with the session.  ALC uses the FEC building block
   [RFC5052] to provide reliability.  The sender generates encoding
   symbols based on the object to be delivered using FEC codes and sends
   them in packets to channels associated with the session.  Receivers



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   simply wait for enough packets to arrive in order to reliably
   reconstruct the object.  Thus, there is no request for retransmission
   of individual packets from receivers that miss packets in order to
   assure reliable reception of an object, and the packets and their
   rate of transmission out of the sender can be independent of the
   number and the individual reception experiences of the receivers.

   The definition of a session for ALC is the same as it is for LCT.  An
   ALC session comprises multiple channels originating at a single
   sender that are used for some period of time to carry packets
   pertaining to the transmission of one or more objects that can be of
   interest to receivers.  Congestion control is performed over the
   aggregate of packets sent to channels belonging to a session.  The
   fact that an ALC session is restricted to a single sender does not
   preclude the possibility of receiving packets for the same objects
   from multiple senders.  However, each sender would be sending packets
   to a different session to which congestion control is individually
   applied.  Although receiving concurrently from multiple sessions is
   allowed, how this is done at the application level is outside the
   scope of this document.

   ALC is a protocol instantiation as defined in [RFC3048].  This
   document describes version 1 of ALC, which MUST use version 1 of LCT
   described in [RFC5651].  Like LCT, ALC is designed to be used with
   the IP multicast network service.  This specification defines ALC as
   payload of the UDP transport protocol [RFC0768] that supports the IP
   multicast delivery of packets.

   The ALC packet format is illustrated in Figure 1.  An ALC packet
   header immediately follows the IP/UDP header and consists of the
   default LCT header that is described in [RFC5651] followed by the FEC
   Payload ID that is described in [RFC5052].  The Congestion Control
   Information field within the LCT header carries the required
   Congestion Control Information that is described in the multiple rate
   congestion control building block specified that is compliant with
   [RFC2357].  The packet payload that follows the ALC packet header
   consists of encoding symbols that are identified by the FEC Payload
   ID as described in [RFC5052].













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               +----------------------------------------+
               |               IP Header                |
               +----------------------------------------+
               |              UDP Header                |
               +----------------------------------------+
               |              LCT Header                |
               +----------------------------------------+
               |            FEC Payload Id              |
               +----------------------------------------+
               |           Encoding Symbols             |
               +----------------------------------------+

                        Figure 1: ALC Packet Format

   Each receiver is required to obtain a Session Description before
   joining an ALC session.  As described later, the Session Description
   includes out-of-band information required for the LCT, FEC, and the
   multiple rate congestion control building blocks.  The FEC Object
   Transmission Information specified in the FEC building block
   [RFC5052] required for each object to be received by a receiver can
   be communicated to a receiver either out-of-band or in-band using a
   Header Extension.  The means for communicating the Session
   Description and the FEC Object Transmission Information to a receiver
   is outside the scope of this document.

2.1.  LCT Building Block

   LCT requires receivers to be able to uniquely identify and
   demultiplex packets associated with an LCT session, and ALC inherits
   and strengthens this requirement.  A Transport Session Identifier
   (TSI) MUST be associated with each session and MUST be carried in the
   LCT header of each ALC packet.  The TSI is scoped by the sender IP
   address, and the (sender IP address, TSI) pair MUST uniquely identify
   the session.

   The LCT header contains a Congestion Control Information (CCI) field
   that MUST be used to carry the Congestion Control Information from
   the specified multiple rate congestion control protocol.  There is a
   field in the LCT header that specifies the length of the CCI field,
   and the multiple rate congestion control building block MUST uniquely
   identify a format of the CCI field that corresponds to this length.

   The LCT header contains a Codepoint field that MAY be used to
   communicate to a receiver the settings for information that may vary
   during a session.  If used, the mapping between settings and
   Codepoint values is to be communicated in the Session Description,
   and this mapping is outside the scope of this document.  For example,
   the FEC Encoding ID that is part of the FEC Object Transmission



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   Information, as specified in the FEC building block [RFC5052], could
   vary for each object carried in the session, and the Codepoint value
   could be used to communicate the FEC Encoding ID to be used for each
   object.  The mapping between FEC Encoding IDs and Codepoints could
   be, for example, the identity mapping.

   If more than one object is to be carried within a session, then the
   Transmission Object Identifier (TOI) MUST be used in the LCT header
   to identify which packets are to be associated with which objects.
   In this case, the receiver MUST use the TOI to associate received
   packets with objects.  The TOI is scoped by the IP address of the
   sender and the TSI, i.e., the TOI is scoped by the session.  The TOI
   for each object is REQUIRED to be unique within a session, but is not
   required be unique across sessions.  Furthermore, the same object MAY
   have a different TOI in different sessions.  The mapping between TOIs
   and objects carried in a session is outside the scope of this
   document.

   If only one object is carried within a session, then the TOI MAY be
   omitted from the LCT header.

   The LCT header from version 1 of the LCT building block [RFC5651]
   MUST be used.

   The LCT Header includes a two-bit Protocol Specific Indication (PSI)
   field in bits 6 and 7 of the first word of the LCT header.  These two
   bits are used by ALC as follows:

       0                   1                   2                   3
       0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
                  +-+-+
               ...|X|Y|...
                  +-+-+

                   Figure 2: PSI Bits within LCT Header

      PSI bit X - Source Packet Indicator (SPI)

      PSI bit Y - Reserved

   The Source Packet Indicator is used with systematic FEC Schemes which
   define a different FEC Payload ID format for packets containing only
   source data compared to the FEC Payload ID format for packets
   containing repair data.  For such FEC Schemes, the SPI MUST be set to
   1 when the FEC Payload ID format for packets containing only source
   data is used, and the SPI MUST be set to zero when the FEC Payload ID
   for packets containing repair data is used.  In the case of FEC




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   Schemes that define only a single FEC Payload ID format, the SPI MUST
   be set to zero by the sender and MUST be ignored by the receiver.

   Support of two FEC Payload ID formats allows FEC Payload ID
   information that is only of relevance when FEC decoding is to be
   performed to be provided in the FEC Payload ID format for packets
   containing repair data.  This information need not be processed by
   receivers that do not perform FEC decoding (either because no FEC
   decoding is required or because the receiver does not support FEC
   decoding).

2.2.  Multiple Rate Congestion Control Building Block

   At a minimum, implementations of ALC MUST support [RFC3738].  Note
   that [RFC3738] has been published in the "Experimental" category and
   thus has lower maturity level than the present document.  Caution
   should be used since it may be less stable than this document.

   Congestion control MUST be applied to all packets within a session
   independently of which information about which object is carried in
   each packet.  Multiple rate congestion control is specified because
   of its suitability to scale massively and because of its suitability
   for reliable content delivery.  [RFC3738] specifies in-band
   Congestion Control Information (CCI) that MUST be carried in the CCI
   field of the LCT header.

   Alternative multiple rate congestion control building blocks MAY be
   supported, but only a single congestion control building block may be
   used in a given ALC session.  The congestion control building block
   to be used in an ALC session is specified in the Session Description
   (see Section 2.4).  A multiple rate congestion control building block
   MAY specify more than one format for the CCI field, but it MUST
   specify at most one format for each of the possible lengths 32, 64,
   96, or 128 bits.  The value of C in the LCT header that determines
   the length of the CCI field MUST correspond to one of the lengths for
   the CCI defined in the multiple rate congestion control building
   block; this length MUST be the same for all packets sent to a
   session, and the CCI format that corresponds to the length as
   specified in the multiple rate congestion control building block MUST
   be the format used for the CCI field in the LCT header.

   When using a multiple rate congestion control building block, a
   sender sends packets in the session to several channels at
   potentially different rates.  Then, individual receivers adjust their
   reception rate within a session by adjusting to which set of channels
   they are joined at each point in time depending on the available
   bandwidth between the receiver and the sender, but independent of
   other receivers.



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2.3.  FEC Building Block

   The FEC building block [RFC5052] provides reliable object delivery
   within an ALC session.  Each object sent in the session is
   independently encoded using FEC codes as described in [RFC3453],
   which provide a more in-depth description of the use of FEC codes in
   reliable content delivery protocols.  All packets in an ALC session
   MUST contain an FEC Payload ID in a format that is compliant with the
   FEC Scheme in use.  The FEC Payload ID uniquely identifies the
   encoding symbols that constitute the payload of each packet, and the
   receiver MUST use the FEC Payload ID to determine how the encoding
   symbols carried in the payload of the packet were generated from the
   object as described in the FEC building block.

   As described in [RFC5052], a receiver is REQUIRED to obtain the FEC
   Object Transmission Information for each object for which data
   packets are received from the session.  In the context of ALC, the
   FEC Object Transmission Information includes:

   o  The FEC Encoding ID.

   o  If an Under-Specified FEC Encoding ID is used, then the FEC
      Instance ID associated with the FEC Encoding ID.

   o  For each object in the session, the transfer length of the object
      in bytes.

   Additional FEC Object Transmission Information may be required
   depending on the FEC Scheme that is used (identified by the FEC
   Encoding ID).

   Some of the FEC Object Transmission Information MAY be implicit based
   on the FEC Scheme and/or implementation.  As an example, source block
   lengths may be derived by a fixed algorithm from the object length.
   As another example, it may be that all source blocks are the same
   length and this is what is passed out-of-band to the receiver.  As
   another example, it could be that the full-sized source block length
   is provided, and this is the length used for all but the last source
   block, which is calculated based on the full source block length and
   the object length.  As another example, it could be that the same FEC
   Encoding ID and FEC Instance ID are always used for a particular
   application, and thus the FEC Encoding ID and FEC Instance ID are
   implicitly defined.

   Sometimes the objects that will be sent in a session are completely
   known before the receiver joins the session, in which case the FEC
   Object Transmission Information for all objects in the session can be
   communicated to receivers before they join the session.  At other



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   times, the objects may not know when the session begins, receivers
   may join a session in progress and may not be interested in some
   objects for which transmission has finished, or receivers may leave a
   session before some objects are even available within the session.
   In these cases, the FEC Object Transmission Information for each
   object may be dynamically communicated to receivers at or before the
   time packets for the object are received from the session.  This may
   be accomplished using an out-of-band mechanism, in-band using the
   Codepoint field or a Header Extension, or any combination of these
   methods.  How the FEC Object Transmission Information is communicated
   to receivers is outside the scope of this document.

2.4.  Session Description

   Before a receiver can join an ALC session, the receiver needs to
   obtain a Session Description that contains the following information:

   o  The multiple rate congestion control building block to be used for
      the session;

   o  The sender IP address;

   o  The number of channels in the session;

   o  The address and port number used for each channel in the session;

   o  The Transport Session ID (TSI) to be used for the session;

   o  An indication of whether or not the session carries packets for
      more than one object;

   o  If Header Extensions are to be used, the format of these Header
      Extensions.

   o  Enough information to determine the packet authentication scheme
      being used, if one is being used.

   How the Session Description is communicated to receivers is outside
   the scope of this document.

   The Codepoint field within the LCT portion of the header CAN be used
   to communicate in-band some of the dynamically changing information
   within a session.  To do this, a mapping between Codepoint values and
   the different dynamic settings MUST be included within the Session
   Description, and then settings to be used are communicated via the
   Codepoint value placed into each packet.  For example, it is possible
   that multiple objects are delivered within the same session and that
   a different FEC encoding algorithm is used for different types of



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   objects.  Then the Session Description could contain the mapping
   between Codepoint values and FEC Encoding IDs.  As another example,
   it is possible that a different packet authentication scheme is used
   for different packets sent to the session.  In this case, the mapping
   between the packet authentication scheme and Codepoint values could
   be provided in the Session Description.  Combinations of settings can
   be mapped to Codepoint values as well.  For example, a particular
   combination of a FEC Encoding ID and a packet authentication scheme
   could be associated with a Codepoint value.

   The Session Description could also include, but is not limited to:

   o  The mappings between combinations of settings and Codepoint
      values;

   o  The data rates used for each channel;

   o  The length of the packet payload;

   o  Any information that is relevant to each object being transported,
      such as the Object Transmission Information for each object, when
      the object will be available within the session, and for how long.

   The Session Description could be in a form such as the Session
   Description Protocol (SDP) as defined in [RFC4566], XML metadata as
   defined in [RFC3023], or HTTP/MIME headers as defined in [RFC2616],
   etc.  It might be carried in a session announcement protocol such as
   SAP as defined in [RFC2974], obtained using a proprietary session
   control protocol, located on a web page with scheduling information,
   or conveyed via email or other out-of-band methods.  Discussion of
   Session Description formats and methods for communication of Session
   Descriptions to receivers is beyond the scope of this document.

2.5.  Packet Authentication Building Block

   It is RECOMMENDED that implementors of ALC use some packet
   authentication scheme to protect the protocol from attacks.  Suitable
   schemes are described in [RFC5776] and [RMT-SIMPLE].

3.  Conformance Statement

   This Protocol Instantiation document, in conjunction with the LCT
   building block [RFC5651], the FEC building block [RFC5052], and
   [RFC3738] completely specifies a working reliable multicast transport
   protocol that conforms to the requirements described in [RFC2357].






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4.  Functionality Definition

   This section describes the format and functionality of the data
   packets carried in an ALC session as well as the sender and receiver
   operations for a session.

4.1.  Packet Format Used by ALC

   The packet format used by ALC is the UDP header followed by the LCT
   header followed by the FEC Payload ID followed by the packet payload.
   The LCT header is defined in the LCT building block [RFC5651] and the
   FEC Payload ID is described in the FEC building block [RFC5052].  The
   Congestion Control Information field in the LCT header contains the
   required Congestion Control Information that is described in the
   multiple rate congestion control building block used.  The packet
   payload contains encoding symbols generated from an object.  If more
   than one object is carried in the session, then the Transmission
   Object ID (TOI) within the LCT header MUST be used to identify from
   which object the encoding symbols are generated.  Within the scope of
   an object, encoding symbols carried in the payload of the packet are
   identified by the FEC Payload ID as described in the FEC building
   block.

   The version number of ALC specified in this document is 1.  The
   version number field of the LCT header MUST be interpreted as the ALC
   version number field.  This version of ALC implicitly makes use of
   version 1 of the LCT building block defined in [RFC5651].

   The overall ALC packet format is depicted in Figure 3.  The packet is
   an IP packet, either IPv4 or IPv6, and the IP header precedes the UDP
   header.  The ALC packet format has no dependencies on the IP version
   number.



















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        0                   1                   2                   3
        0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
       +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
       |                         UDP Header                            |
       |                                                               |
       +=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+
       |                         LCT Header                            |
       |                                                               |
       +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
       |                       FEC Payload ID                          |
       |                                                               |
       +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
       |                     Encoding Symbol(s)                        |
       |                           ...                                 |
       +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+

                    Figure 3: Overall ALC Packet Format

   In some special cases an ALC sender may need to produce ALC packets
   that do not contain any payload.  This may be required, for example,
   to signal the end of a session or to convey congestion control
   information.  These data-less packets do not contain the FEC Payload
   ID either, but only the LCT header fields.  The total datagram
   length, conveyed by outer protocol headers (e.g., the IP or UDP
   header), enables receivers to detect the absence of the ALC payload
   and FEC Payload ID.

   For ALC, the length of the TSI field within the LCT header is
   REQUIRED to be non-zero.  This implies that the sender MUST NOT set
   both the LCT flags S and H to zero.

4.2.  LCT Header Extension Fields

   This specification defines a new LCT Header Extension, "EXT_FTI", for
   the purpose of communicating the FEC Object Transmission Information
   in association with data packets of an object.  The LCT Header
   Extension Type for EXT_FTI is 64.

   The Header Extension Content (HEC) field of the EXT_FTI LCT Header
   Extension contains the encoded FEC Object Transmission Information as
   defined in [RFC5052].  The format of the encoded FEC Object
   Transmission Information is dependent on the FEC Scheme in use and so
   is outside the scope of this document.








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4.3.  Sender Operation

   The sender operation, when using ALC, includes all the points made
   about the sender operation when using the LCT building block
   [RFC5651], the FEC building block [RFC5052], and the multiple rate
   congestion control building block.

   A sender using ALC should make available the required Session
   Description as described in Section 2.4.  A sender should also make
   available the required FEC Object Transmission Information as
   described in Section 2.3.

   Within a session, a sender transmits a sequence of packets to the
   channels associated with the session.  The ALC sender MUST obey the
   rules for filling in the CCI field in the packet headers, and it MUST
   send packets at the appropriate rates to the channels associated with
   the session as dictated by the multiple rate congestion control
   building block.

   The ALC sender MUST use the same TSI for all packets in the session.
   Several objects MAY be delivered within the same ALC session.  If
   more than one object is to be delivered within a session, then the
   sender MUST use the TOI field.  Each object MUST be identified by a
   unique TOI within the session, and the sender MUST use corresponding
   TOI for all packets pertaining to the same object.  The FEC Payload
   ID MUST correspond to the encoding symbol(s) for the object carried
   in the payload of the packet.

   It is RECOMMENDED that packet authentication be used.  If packet
   authentication is used, then the Header Extensions described in
   Section 4.2 MAY be used to carry the authentication.

4.4.  Receiver Operation

   The receiver operation, when using ALC, includes all the points made
   about the receiver operation when using the LCT building block
   [RFC5651], the FEC building block [RFC5052], and the multiple rate
   congestion control building block.

   To be able to participate in a session, a receiver needs to obtain
   the required Session Description as listed in Section 2.4.  How
   receivers obtain a Session Description is outside the scope of this
   document.

   As described in Section 2.3, a receiver needs to obtain the required
   FEC Object Transmission Information for each object for which the
   receiver receives and processes packets.




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   Upon receipt of each packet, the receiver proceeds with the following
   steps in the order listed.

   1.  The receiver MUST parse the packet header and verify that it is a
       valid header.  If it is not valid, then the packet MUST be
       discarded without further processing.

   2.  The receiver MUST verify that the sender IP address together with
       the TSI carried in the header matches one of the (sender IP
       address, TSI) pairs that was received in a Session Description
       and to which the receiver is currently joined.  If there is not a
       match, then the packet MUST be silently discarded without further
       processing.  The remaining steps are performed within the scope
       of the (sender IP address, TSI) session of the received packet.

   3.  The receiver MUST process and act on the CCI field in accordance
       with the multiple rate congestion control building block.

   4.  If more than one object is carried in the session, the receiver
       MUST verify that the TOI carried in the LCT header is valid.  If
       the TOI is not valid, the packet MUST be discarded without
       further processing.

   5.  The receiver SHOULD process the remainder of the packet,
       including interpreting the other header fields appropriately, and
       using the FEC Payload ID and the encoding symbol(s) in the
       payload to reconstruct the corresponding object.

   It is RECOMMENDED that packet authentication be used.  If packet
   authentication is used, then it is RECOMMENDED that the receiver
   immediately check the authenticity of a packet before proceeding with
   step (3) above.  If immediate checking is possible and if the packet
   fails the check, then the receiver MUST silently discard the packet.

5.  Security Considerations

   The same security considerations that apply to the LCT, FEC, and the
   multiple rate congestion control building blocks also apply to ALC.

   ALC is especially vulnerable to denial-of-service attacks by
   attackers that try to send forged packets to the session, which would
   prevent successful reconstruction or cause inaccurate reconstruction
   of large portions of the object by receivers.  ALC is also
   particularly affected by such an attack because many receivers may
   receive the same forged packet.  There are two ways to protect
   against such attacks, one at the application level and one at the
   packet level.  It is RECOMMENDED that prevention be provided at both
   levels.



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   At the application level, it is RECOMMENDED that an integrity check
   on the entire received object be done once the object is
   reconstructed to ensure it is the same as the sent object.  Moreover,
   in order to obtain strong cryptographic integrity protection, a
   digital signature verifiable by the receiver SHOULD be used to
   provide this application-level integrity check.  However, if even one
   corrupted or forged packet is used to reconstruct the object, it is
   likely that the received object will be reconstructed incorrectly.
   This will appropriately cause the integrity check to fail and in this
   case, the inaccurately reconstructed object SHOULD be discarded.
   Thus, the acceptance of a single forged packet can be an effective
   denial-of-service attack for distributing objects, but an object
   integrity check at least prevents inadvertent use of inaccurately
   reconstructed objects.  The specification of an application-level
   integrity check of the received object is outside the scope of this
   document.

   At the packet level, it is RECOMMENDED that a packet-level
   authentication be used to ensure that each received packet is an
   authentic and uncorrupted packet containing data for the object
   arriving from the specified sender.  Packet-level authentication has
   the advantage that corrupt or forged packets can be discarded
   individually and the received authenticated packets can be used to
   accurately reconstruct the object.  Thus, the effect of a denial-of-
   service attack that injects forged packets is proportional only to
   the number of forged packets, and not to the object size.
   [RMT-SIMPLE]and [RFC5776] described packet level authentication
   schemes that can be used with the ALC protocol.

   In addition to providing protection against reconstruction of
   inaccurate objects, packet-level authentication can also provide some
   protection against denial-of-service attacks on the multiple rate
   congestion control.  Attackers can try to inject forged packets with
   incorrect congestion control information into the multicast stream,
   thereby potentially adversely affecting network elements and
   receivers downstream of the attack, and much less significantly the
   rest of the network and other receivers.  Thus, it is also
   RECOMMENDED that packet-level authentication be used to protect
   against such attacks.  Timed Efficient Stream Loss-Tolerant
   Authentication (TESLA) [RFC5776] can also be used to some extent to
   limit the damage caused by such attacks.  However, with TESLA, a
   receiver can only determine if a packet is authentic several seconds
   after it is received, and thus an attack against the congestion
   control protocol can be effective for several seconds before the
   receiver can react to slow down the session reception rate.

   Some packet authentication schemes such as TESLA [RFC5776] do not
   allow an immediate authenticity check.  In this case, the receiver



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   SHOULD check the authenticity of a packet as soon as possible, and if
   the packet fails the check, then it MUST be silently discarded before
   Step 5 above.  It is RECOMMENDED that if receivers detect many
   packets that fail authentication checks within a session, the above
   procedure should be modified for this session so that Step 3 is
   delayed until after the authentication check and only performed if
   the check succeeds.

   Reverse Path Forwarding checks SHOULD be enabled in all network
   routers and switches along the path from the sender to receivers to
   limit the possibility of a bad agent injecting forged packets into
   the multicast tree data path.

5.1.  Baseline Secure ALC Operation

   This section describes a baseline mode of secure ALC protocol
   operation based on application of the IPsec security protocol.  This
   approach is documented here to provide a reference of an
   interoperable secure mode of operation.  However, additional
   approaches to ALC security, including other forms of IPsec
   application, MAY be specified in the future.  For example, the use of
   the EXT_AUTH Header Extension could enable ALC-specific
   authentication or security encapsulation headers similar to those of
   IPsec to be specified and inserted into the ALC/LCT protocol message
   headers.  This would allow header compression techniques to be
   applied to IP and ALC protocol headers when needed in a similar
   fashion to that of RTP [RFC3550] and as preserved in the
   specification for Secure Real Time Protocol (SRTP) [RFC3711].

   The baseline approach described is applicable to ALC operation
   configured for SSM (or SSM-like) operation where there is a single
   sender.  The receiver set would maintain a single IPsec Security
   Association (SA) for each ALC sender.

5.1.1.  IPsec Approach

   To support this baseline form of secure ALC one-to-many SSM
   operation, each node SHALL be configured with a transport mode IPsec
   Security Association and corresponding Security Policy Database (SPD)
   entry.  This entry will be used for sender-to-group multicast packet
   authentication and optionally encryption.

   The ALC sender SHALL use an IPsec SA configured for Encapsulating
   Security Payload (ESP) protocol [RFC4303] operation with the option
   for data origination authentication enabled.  It is also RECOMMENDED
   that this IPsec ESP SA be also configured to provide confidentiality
   protection for IP packets containing ALC protocol messages.  This is
   suggested to make the realization of complex replay attacks much more



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   difficult.  The encryption key for this SA SHALL be preplaced at the
   sender and receiver(s) prior to ALC protocol operation.  Use of
   automated key management is RECOMMENDED as a rekey SHALL be required
   prior to expiration of the sequence space for the SA.  This is
   necessary so that receivers may use the built-in IPsec replay attack
   protection possible for an IPsec SA with a single source (the ALC
   sender).  Thus, the receivers SHALL enable replay attack protection
   for this SA used to secure ALC sender traffic.  The sender IPsec SPD
   entry MUST be configured to process outbound packets to the
   destination address and UDP port number of the applicable ALC
   session.

   The ALC receiver(s) MUST be configured with the SA and SPD entry to
   properly process the IPsec-secured packets from the sender.  Note
   that use of ESP confidentiality, as RECOMMENDED, for secure ALC
   protocol operation makes it more difficult for adversaries to conduct
   effective replay attacks that may mislead receivers on content
   reception.  This baseline approach can be used for ALC protocol
   sessions with multiple senders if a distinct SA is established for
   each sender.

   In early deployments of this baseline approach to ALC security, it is
   anticipated that key management will be conducted out-of-band with
   respect to ALC protocol operation.  For ALC unidirectional operation,
   it is possible that receivers may retrieve keying information from a
   central server via out-of-band (with respect to ALC) communication as
   needed or otherwise conduct group key updates with a similar
   centralized approach.  However, it may be possible with some key
   management schemes for rekey messages to be transmitted to the group
   as a message or transport object within the ALC reliable transfer
   session.  An additional specification is necessary to define an in-
   band key management scheme for ALC sessions perhaps using the
   mechanisms of the automated group key management specifications cited
   in this document.

5.1.2.  IPsec Requirements

   In order to implement this secure mode of ALC protocol operation, the
   following IPsec capabilities are required.

5.1.2.1.  Selectors

   The implementation MUST be able to use the source address,
   destination address, protocol (UDP), and UDP port numbers as
   selectors in the SPD.






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5.1.2.2.  Mode

   IPsec in transport mode MUST be supported.  The use of IPsec
   [RFC4301] processing for secure ALC traffic SHOULD also be REQUIRED
   such that unauthenticated packets are not received by the ALC
   protocol implementation.

5.1.2.3.  Key Management

   An automated key management scheme for group key distribution and
   rekeying such as the Group Domain of Interpretation (GDOI) [RFC3547],
   Group Secure Association Key Management Protocol (GSAKMP) [RFC4535],
   or Multimedia Internet KEYing (MIKEY) [RFC3830] SHOULD be used.
   Relatively short-lived ALC sessions MAY be able to use Manual Keying
   with a single, preplaced key, particularly if Extended Sequence
   Numbering (ESN) [RFC4303] is available in the IPsec implementation
   used.  It should also be noted that it may be possible for key update
   messages (e.g., the GDOI GROUPKEY-PUSH message) to be included in the
   ALC application reliable data transmission as transport objects if
   appropriate interfaces were available between the ALC application and
   the key management daemon.

5.1.2.4.  Security Policy

   Receivers SHOULD accept connections only from the designated,
   authorized sender(s).  It is expected that appropriate key management
   will provide encryption keys only to receivers authorized to
   participate in a designated session.  The approach outlined here
   allows receiver sets to be controlled on a per-sender basis.

5.1.2.5.  Authentication and Encryption

   Large ALC group sizes may necessitate some form of key management
   that does rely upon shared secrets.  The GDOI and GSAKMP protocols
   mentioned here allow for certificate-based authentication.  These
   certificates SHOULD use IP addresses for authentication.  However, it
   is likely that available group key management implementations will
   not be ALC-specific.

5.1.2.6.  Availability

   The IPsec requirements profile outlined here is commonly available on
   many potential ALC hosts.  The principal issue is that configuration
   and operation of IPsec typically requires privileged user
   authorization.  Automated key management implementations are
   typically configured with the privileges necessary to allow the
   needed system IPsec configuration.




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6.  IANA Considerations

   This specification registers one value in the LCT Header Extensions
   Types namespace as follows:

                 +-------+---------+--------------------+
                 | Value | Name    | Reference          |
                 +-------+---------+--------------------+
                 | 64    | EXT_FTI | This specification |
                 +-------+---------+--------------------+

7.  Acknowledgments

   This specification is substantially based on RFC 3450 [RFC3450] and
   thus credit for the authorship of this document is primarily due to
   the authors of RFC 3450: Mike Luby, Jim Gemmel, Lorenzo Vicisano,
   Luigi Rizzo, and Jon Crowcroft.  Vincent Roca, Justin Chapweske, and
   Roger Kermode also contributed to RFC 3450.  Additional thanks are
   due to Vincent Roca and Rod Walsh for contributions to this update to
   Proposed Standard.

8.  Changes from RFC 3450

   This section summarizes the changes that were made from the
   "Experimental" version of this specification published as RFC 3450
   [RFC3450]:

   o  Updated all references to the obsoleted RFC 2068 to RFC 2616.

   o  Removed the 'Statement of Intent' from the introduction.  (The
      Statement of Intent was meant to clarify the "Experimental" status
      of RFC 3450.)

   o  Removed the 'Intellectual Property Issues' Section and replaced
      with a standard IPR Statement.

   o  Removed material duplicated in LCT.

   o  Updated references in this document to new versions of the LCT
      Building Block and the FEC Building Block, and aligned this
      document with changes in the new version of the FEC Building
      Block.

   o  Split normative and informative references.

   o  Material applicable in a general LCT context, not just for ALC has
      been moved to LCT.




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   o  The first bit of the "Protocol-Specific Indication" in the LCT
      Header is defined as a "Source Packet Indication".  This is used
      in the case that an FEC Scheme defines two FEC Payload ID formats,
      one of which is for packets containing only source symbols that
      can be processed by receivers that do not support FEC Decoding.

   o  Definition and IANA registration of the EXT_FTI LCT Header
      Extension.

9.  References

9.1.  Normative References

   [RFC0768]     Postel, J., "User Datagram Protocol", STD 6, RFC 768,
                 August 1980.

   [RFC1112]     Deering, S., "Host extensions for IP multicasting",
                 STD 5, RFC 1112, August 1989.

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

   [RFC2616]     Fielding, R., Gettys, J., Mogul, J., Frystyk, H.,
                 Masinter, L., Leach, P., and T. Berners-Lee, "Hypertext
                 Transfer Protocol -- HTTP/1.1", RFC 2616, June 1999.

   [RFC3023]     Murata, M., St. Laurent, S., and D. Kohn, "XML Media
                 Types", RFC 3023, January 2001.

   [RFC3738]     Luby, M. and V. Goyal, "Wave and Equation Based Rate
                 Control (WEBRC) Building Block", RFC 3738, April 2004.

   [RFC4301]     Kent, S. and K. Seo, "Security Architecture for the
                 Internet Protocol", RFC 4301, December 2005.

   [RFC4303]     Kent, S., "IP Encapsulating Security Payload (ESP)",
                 RFC 4303, December 2005.

   [RFC4566]     Handley, M., Jacobson, V., and C. Perkins, "SDP:
                 Session Description Protocol", RFC 4566, July 2006.

   [RFC5052]     Watson, M., Luby, M., and L. Vicisano, "Forward Error
                 Correction (FEC) Building Block", RFC 5052,
                 August 2007.

   [RFC5651]     Luby, M., Watson, M., and L. Vicisano, "Layered Coding
                 Transport (LCT) Building Block", RFC 5651,
                 October 2009.



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9.2.  Informative References

   [RFC2357]     Mankin, A., Romanov, A., Bradner, S., and V. Paxson,
                 "IETF Criteria for Evaluating Reliable Multicast
                 Transport and Application Protocols", RFC 2357,
                 June 1998.

   [RFC2974]     Handley, M., Perkins, C., and E. Whelan, "Session
                 Announcement Protocol", RFC 2974, October 2000.

   [RFC3048]     Whetten, B., Vicisano, L., Kermode, R., Handley, M.,
                 Floyd, S., and M. Luby, "Reliable Multicast Transport
                 Building Blocks for One-to-Many Bulk-Data Transfer",
                 RFC 3048, January 2001.

   [RFC3269]     Kermode, R. and L. Vicisano, "Author Guidelines for
                 Reliable Multicast Transport (RMT) Building Blocks and
                 Protocol Instantiation documents", RFC 3269,
                 April 2002.

   [RFC3450]     Luby, M., Gemmell, J., Vicisano, L., Rizzo, L., and J.
                 Crowcroft, "Asynchronous Layered Coding (ALC) Protocol
                 Instantiation", RFC 3450, December 2002.

   [RFC3453]     Luby, M., Vicisano, L., Gemmell, J., Rizzo, L.,
                 Handley, M., and J. Crowcroft, "The Use of Forward
                 Error Correction (FEC) in Reliable Multicast",
                 RFC 3453, December 2002.

   [RFC3547]     Baugher, M., Weis, B., Hardjono, T., and H. Harney,
                 "The Group Domain of Interpretation", RFC 3547,
                 July 2003.

   [RFC3550]     Schulzrinne, H., Casner, S., Frederick, R., and V.
                 Jacobson, "RTP: A Transport Protocol for Real-Time
                 Applications", STD 64, RFC 3550, July 2003.

   [RFC3569]     Bhattacharyya, S., "An Overview of Source-Specific
                 Multicast (SSM)", RFC 3569, July 2003.

   [RFC3618]     Fenner, B. and D. Meyer, "Multicast Source Discovery
                 Protocol (MSDP)", RFC 3618, October 2003.

   [RFC3711]     Baugher, M., McGrew, D., Naslund, M., Carrara, E., and
                 K. Norrman, "The Secure Real-time Transport Protocol
                 (SRTP)", RFC 3711, March 2004.





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   [RFC3830]     Arkko, J., Carrara, E., Lindholm, F., Naslund, M., and
                 K. Norrman, "MIKEY: Multimedia Internet KEYing",
                 RFC 3830, August 2004.

   [RFC4535]     Harney, H., Meth, U., Colegrove, A., and G. Gross,
                 "GSAKMP: Group Secure Association Key Management
                 Protocol", RFC 4535, June 2006.

   [RFC5776]     Roca, V., Francillon, A., and S. Faurite, "Use of Timed
                 Efficient Stream Loss-Tolerant Authentication (TESLA)
                 in the Asynchronous Layered Coding (ALC) and NACK-
                 Oriented Reliable Multicast (NORM) Protocols",
                 RFC 5776, April 2010.

   [RMT-SIMPLE]  Roca, V., "Simple Authentication Schemes for the ALC
                 and NORM Protocols", Work in Progress, October 2009.

Authors' Addresses

   Michael Luby
   Qualcomm, Inc.
   3165 Kifer Road
   Santa Clara, CA  95051
   US

   EMail: luby@qualcomm.com


   Mark Watson
   Qualcomm, Inc.
   3165 Kifer Road
   Santa Clara, CA  95051
   US

   EMail: watson@qualcomm.com


   Lorenzo Vicisano
   Qualcomm, Inc.
   3165 Kifer Road
   Santa Clara, CA  95051
   US

   EMail: vicisano@qualcomm.com







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