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Versions: (draft-briscoe-tcpm-syn-op-sis) 00 01

TCP Maintenance and Minor Extensions (tcpm)                   B. Briscoe
Internet-Draft                                                        BT
Updates: 793 (if approved)                              October 19, 2014
Intended status: Experimental
Expires: April 22, 2015


                      Inner Space for TCP Options
                   draft-briscoe-tcpm-inner-space-00

Abstract

   This document describes an experimental method to extend the limited
   space for control options in every segment of a TCP connection.  It
   can use a dual handshake so that, from the very first SYN segment,
   extra option space can immediately start to be used optimistically.
   At the same time the dual handshake prevents a legacy server from
   getting confused and sending the control options to the application
   as user-data.  The dual handshake is only one strategy - a single
   handshake will usually suffice once deployment has got started.  The
   protocol is designed to traverse most known middleboxes including
   connection splitters, because it sits wholly within the TCP Data.  It
   also provides reliable ordered delivery for control options.
   Therefore, it should allow new TCP options to be introduced i) with
   minimal middlebox traversal problems; ii) avoiding incremental
   deployment problems with pre-existing servers; iii) without an extra
   round of handshaking delay iv) without having to provide its own loss
   recovery and ordering mechanism and v) without arbitrary limits on
   available space.

Status of This Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF).  Note that other groups may also distribute
   working documents as Internet-Drafts.  The list of current Internet-
   Drafts is at http://datatracker.ietf.org/drafts/current/.

   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."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on April 22, 2015.





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Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2014 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.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     1.1.  Motivation for Adoption Now (to be removed before
           publication)  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
     1.2.  Scope . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
     1.3.  Experiment Goals  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
     1.4.  Document Roadmap  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
     1.5.  Terminology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
   2.  Protocol Specification  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
     2.1.  Protocol Interaction Model  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
       2.1.1.  Dual 3-Way Handshake  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
       2.1.2.  Dual Handshake Retransmission Behaviour . . . . . . .  11
       2.1.3.  Continuing the Upgraded Connection  . . . . . . . . .  12
     2.2.  Upgraded Segment Structure and Format . . . . . . . . . .  12
       2.2.1.  Structure of an Upgraded Segment  . . . . . . . . . .  12
       2.2.2.  Format of the InSpace Option  . . . . . . . . . . . .  14
     2.3.  Inner TCP Option Processing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  15
       2.3.1.  Writing Inner TCP Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  15
         2.3.1.1.  Constraints on TCP Fast Open  . . . . . . . . . .  15
         2.3.1.2.  Option Alignment  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  16
         2.3.1.3.  Sequence Space Coverage . . . . . . . . . . . . .  16
         2.3.1.4.  Presence or Absence of Payload  . . . . . . . . .  16
       2.3.2.  Reading Inner TCP Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  17
         2.3.2.1.  Reading Inner TCP Options (SYN=1) . . . . . . . .  17
         2.3.2.2.  Reading Inner TCP Options (SYN=0) . . . . . . . .  18
       2.3.3.  Forwarding Inner TCP Options  . . . . . . . . . . . .  19
     2.4.  Exceptions  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  20
     2.5.  Echo TCP Option . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  20
   3.  Design Rationale  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  21
     3.1.  Dual Handshake and Migration to Single Handshake  . . . .  21
     3.2.  In-Band Inner Option Space  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  22
       3.2.1.  Non-Deterministic Magic Number Approach . . . . . . .  22



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       3.2.2.  Non-Goal: Security Middlebox Evasion  . . . . . . . .  24
       3.2.3.  Avoiding the Start of the First Two Segments  . . . .  24
       3.2.4.  Control Options Within Data Sequence Space  . . . . .  25
       3.2.5.  Rationale for the Sent Payload Size Field . . . . . .  27
     3.3.  Rationale for the InSpace Option Format . . . . . . . . .  27
     3.4.  Protocol Overhead . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  28
   4.  Interaction with Pre-Existing TCP . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  30
   5.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  31
   6.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  31
   7.  Acknowledgements  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  32
   8.  References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  32
     8.1.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  32
     8.2.  Informative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  32
   Appendix A.  Protocol Extension Specifications  . . . . . . . . .  33
     A.1.  Disabling InSpace and Generic Connection Mode Switching .  34
     A.2.  Dual Handshake: The Explicit Variant  . . . . . . . . . .  36
       A.2.1.  SYN-O Structure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  38
       A.2.2.  Retransmission Behaviour - Explicit Variant . . . . .  38
       A.2.3.  Corner Cases  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  39
       A.2.4.  Workround if Data in SYN is Blocked . . . . . . . . .  40
     A.3.  Jumbo InSpace TCP Option (only if SYN=0)  . . . . . . . .  41
     A.4.  Upgraded Segment Structure to Traverse DPI boxes  . . . .  41
   Appendix B.  Comparison of Alternatives . . . . . . . . . . . . .  43
     B.1.  Implicit vs Explicit Dual Handshake . . . . . . . . . . .  43
   Appendix C.  Protocol Design Issues (to be Deleted before
                Publication) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  44
   Appendix D.  Change Log (to be Deleted before Publication)  . . .  44
   Author's Address  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  45

1.  Introduction

   TCP has become hard to extend, partly because the option space was
   limited to 40B when TCP was first defined [RFC0793] and partly
   because many middleboxes only forward TCP headers that conform to the
   stereotype they expect.

   This specification ensures new TCP capabilities can traverse most
   middleboxes by tunnelling TCP options within the TCP Data as 'Inner
   Options' (Figure 1).  Then the TCP receiver can reconstruct the Inner
   Options sent by the sender, even if the middlebox resegments the data
   stream and even if it strips 'Outer' options from the TCP header that
   it does not recognise.  The two words 'Inner Space' are appropriate
   as a name for the scheme; 'Inner' because it encapsulates options
   within the TCP Data and 'Space' because the space within the TCP Data
   is virtually unlimited--constrained only by the maximum segment size.






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   ,-----.                TCP Payload                ,-----.
   | App |<----------------------------------------->| App |
   |-----|                                           |-----|
   |     |       Inner Options within TCP Data       |     |
   |     |<----------------------------------------->|     |
   |     |                                           |     |
   | TCP | TCP Header and             TCP header and | TCP |
   |     | Outer Options  ,---------. Outer Options  |     |
   |     |<-------------->|Middlebox|<-------------->|     |
   |-----|                |---------|                |-----|
   | IP  |                |   IP    |                | IP  |
   :     :                :         :                :     :

                     Figure 1: Encapsulation Approach

   TCP options fall into three main categories:

   a.  Those that have to remain as Outer Options--typically those
       concerned with transmission of each TCP segment, e.g.  Timestamps
       and Selective ACKnowledgements (SACK);

   b.  Those that are best as Inner Options--typically those concerned
       with transmission of the data as a stream, e.g. the TCP
       Authentication Option [RFC5925] or tcpcrypt [I-D.bittau-tcpinc];

   c.  Those that can be either Inner or Outer Options--typically those
       used at the start of a connection which is also inherently the
       start of the first segment so segmentation is not a concern.

   Pressure of space is most acute in the initial segments of each half-
   connection, i.e. the SYN and SYN/ACK, and particularly the SYN.  Even
   though Inner Space is not suitable for category (a) options, moving
   all of categories (b) and (c) into Inner Space frees up plenty of
   outer space in the header for category (a).

   The following list of options that might be required on a SYN
   illustrates how acute the problem is:

   o  4B: Maximum Segment Size (MSS) [RFC0793];

   o  2B: SACK-ok [RFC2018];

   o  3B: Window Scale [RFC7323];

   o  10B: Timestamp [RFC7323];

   o  12B: Multipath TCP [RFC6824];




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   o  6-18B: TCP Fast Open on a resumed connection
      [I-D.ietf-tcpm-fastopen];

   o  16B: TCP-AO [RFC5925];

   There is probably potential for compressing together multiple options
   in order to mitigate the option space problem.  However, the option
   space problem has to be faced, because complex special placement is
   already being contemplated for options that can be larger than 40B on
   their own (e.g. the key agreement options of tcpcrypt
   [I-D.bittau-tcpinc]).

   Given the Inner Space protocol places control options within TCP
   Data, it is critical that a legacy TCP receiver is never confused
   into passing this mix to an application as if it were pure data.
   Naively, both ends could handshake to check they understand the
   protocol, but this would introduce a round of delay and it would not
   solve the shortage of space in a SYN.  Instead, the client uses a
   dual handshake; one suitable for an upgraded server, and the other
   for an ordinary server.  Then, if the client discovers that the
   server does not understand the new protocol, it can abort the
   upgraded handshake before the server passes corrupt data to the
   application.  Otherwise, if the server does understand the new
   protocol, the client can abort the ordinary handshake.  Either way,
   it has added zero extra delay.  Interworking of the dual handshake
   with TCP Fast Open [I-D.ietf-tcpm-fastopen] is carefully defined so
   that the server can even pass data to the application as soon as the
   first SYN arrives.

   When control options are placed within the TCP Data they inherently
   get delivered reliably and in order.  Although this was not
   originally recognised as part of the design brief, it offers the
   significant benefit of simplifying the design of new TCP options.
   Reliable ordered delivery no longer has to be individually crafted
   into the design of each new TCP option.

   Solving the five problems of i) option-space exhaustion; ii)
   middlebox traversal; iii) legacy server confusion; iv) reliable
   ordered control message delivery; and v) handshake latency; does not
   come without cost:

   o  So that the Inner Space protocol is immune to option stripping, it
      flags its presence using a magic number within the TCP Data of the
      two initial segments, not a conventional TCP option in the header.
      This introduces a risk that payload in an ordinary SYN or SYN/ACK
      might be mistaken for the Inner Space protocol (an initial worst-
      case estimate of the probability is one connection globally every
      40 years).  Nonetheless, the risk is zero in the (currently



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      common) case of an ordinary connection without payload during the
      handshake.  There is also no risk of a mistake the other way
      round--an upgraded connection cannot be mistaken for an ordinary
      connection.

   o  Although the dual handshake introduces no extra latency, it
      introduces extra connection processing & state, extra traffic and
      extra header processing.  Initial estimates put the percentage
      overhead in the single digits for connection processing and state,
      and traffic overhead should be only a few hundredths of a percent.
      Nonetheless, once the most popular TCP servers have upgraded, only
      a single handshake will be necessary most of the time and overhead
      should drop to vanishingly small proportions.

   Finally, it should be noted that the ambition of this work is more
   than just an incrementally deployable, low latency way to extend TCP
   option space.  The aim is to move towards a more structured way for
   middleboxes to interact transparently with, rather than arbitrarily
   interfere with, end-system TCP stacks.  This has been achieved for
   connection and stream control options, but it will still be hard to
   introduce new per-segment control options, which will still have to
   be located with the traditional Outer TCP Options.

1.1.  Motivation for Adoption Now (to be removed before publication)

   It seems inevitable that ultimately more option space will be needed,
   particularly given that many of the TCP options introduced recently
   consume large numbers of bits in order to provide sufficient
   information entropy, which is not amenable to compression.

   Extension of TCP option space requires support from both ends.  This
   means it will take many years before the facility is functional for
   most pairs of end-points.  Therefore, given the problem is already
   becoming pressing, a solution needs to start being deployed now.

1.2.  Scope

   This experimental specification extends the TCP wire protocol.  It is
   independent of the dynamic behaviour of TCP and it is independent of
   (and thus compatible with) any protocol that encapsulates TCP,
   including IPv4 and IPv6.

1.3.  Experiment Goals

   TCP is critical to the robust functioning of the Internet, therefore
   any proposed modifications to TCP need to be thoroughly tested.





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   Success criteria:   The experimental protocol will be considered
      successful if it satisfies the following requirements in the
      consensus opinion of the IETF tcpm working group.  The protocol
      needs to be sufficiently well specified so that more than one
      implementation can be built in order to test its function,
      robustness, overhead and interoperability (with itself, with
      previous version of TCP, and with various commonly deployed
      middleboxes).  Non-functional issues such as specified
      recommendations on message timing also need to be tested.  Various
      optional extensions to the protocol are proposed in Appendix A so
      experiments are also needed to determine whether these extensions
      ought to remain optional, or perhaps be removed or become
      mandatory.  The experimental phase will be considered successful
      once all these questions are answered in the consensus opinion of
      the tcpm working group.

   Duration:   To be credible, the experiment will need to last at least
      12 months from publication of the present specification.  If
      successful, it would then be appropriate to progress to a
      standards track specification, complemented by a report on the
      experiments.

1.4.  Document Roadmap

   The body of the document starts with a full specification of the
   Inner Space extension to TCP (Section 2).  It is rather terse,
   answering 'What?' and 'How?' questions, but deferring 'Why?' to
   Section 3.  The careful design choices made are not necessarily
   apparent from a superficial read of the specification, so the Design
   Rationale section is fairly extensive.  The body of the document ends
   with Section 4 that checks possible interactions between the new
   scheme and pre-existing variants of TCP, including interaction with
   partial implementations of TCP in known middleboxes.

   Appendix A specifies optional extensions to the protocol that will
   need to be implemented experimentally to determine whether they are
   useful.  And Appendix B discusses the merits of the chosen design
   against alternative schemes.

1.5.  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 [RFC2119].  In this
   document, these words will appear with that interpretation only when
   in ALL CAPS.  Lower case uses of these words are not to be
   interpreted as carrying RFC-2119 significance.




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   TCP Header:  As defined in [RFC0793].  Even though the present
      specification places TCP options beyond the Data Offset, the term
      'TCP Header' is still used to mean only those fields at the head
      of the segment, delimited by the TCP Data Offset.

   Inner TCP Options  (or just Inner Options): TCP options placed in the
      space that the present specification makes available beyond the
      Data Offset.

   Outer TCP Options  (or just Outer Options): The TCP options in the
      traditional location directly after the base TCP Header and within
      the TCP Data Offset.

   Prefix TCP Options:  Inner Options to be processed before the Outer
      Options.

   Suffix TCP Options:  Inner Options to be processed after the Outer
      Options.

   TCP options:  Any TCP options, whether inner, outer or both.  This
      specification makes this term on its own ambiguous so it should be
      qualified if it is intended to mean TCP options in a certain
      location.

   TCP Payload:  Data to be passed to the layer above TCP.  The present
      specification redefines the TCP Payload so that it does not
      include the Inner TCP Options, the Inner Space Option and any
      Magic Number, even though they are located beyond the Data Offset.

   TCP Data:  The information in a TCP segment after the Data Offset,
      including the TCP Payload, Inner TCP Options, the Inner Space
      Option and the Magic Number defined in the present specification.

   client:  The process taking the role of actively opening a TCP
      connection.

   server:  The process taking the role of TCP listener.

   Upgraded Segment:  A segment that will only be fully understood by a
      host complying with the present specification (even though it
      might appear valid to a pre-existing TCP receiver).  Similarly,
      Upgraded SYN, Upgraded SYN/ACK etc.

   Ordinary Segment:  A segment complying with pre-existing TCP
      specifications but not the present specification.  Similarly,
      Ordinary SYN, Ordinary SYN/ACK etc.

   Upgraded Connection:  A connection starting with an Upgraded SYN.



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   Ordinary Connection:  A connection starting with an Ordinary SYN.

   Upgraded Host:  A host complying with the present document as well as
      with pre-existing TCP specifications.  Similarly Upgraded TCP
      Client, Upgraded TCP Server, etc.

   Legacy Host:  A host complying with pre-existing TCP specifications,
      but not with the present document.  Similarly Legacy TCP Client,
      Legacy TCP Server, etc.

   Note that the term 'Ordinary' is used for segments and connections,
   but the term 'Legacy' is used for hosts.  This is because, if the
   Inner Space protocol were widely used in future, a host that could
   not open an Upgraded Connection would be considered deficient and
   therefore 'Legacy', whereas an Ordinary Connection would not be
   considered deficient in the future; because it will always be
   legitimate to open an Ordinary Connection if extra option space is
   not needed.

2.  Protocol Specification

2.1.  Protocol Interaction Model

2.1.1.  Dual 3-Way Handshake

   During initial deployment, an Upgraded TCP Client sends two
   alternative SYNs: an Ordinary SYN in case the server is legacy and a
   SYN-U in case the server is upgraded.  The two SYNs MUST have the
   same network addresses and the same destination port, but different
   source ports.  Once the client establishes which type of server has
   responded, it continues the connection appropriate to that server
   type and aborts the other without completing the 3-way handshake.

   The format of the SYN-U will be described later (Section 2.2.2).  At
   this stage it is only necessary to know that the client can put
   either TCP options or payload (or both) in a SYN-U, in the space
   traditionally intended only for payload.  So if the server's response
   shows that it does not recognise the Upgraded SYN-U, the client is
   responsible for aborting the Upgraded Connection.  This ensures that
   a Legacy TCP Server will never erroneously confuse the application by
   passing it TCP options as if they were user-data.

   Section 3.1 explains various strategies the client can use to send
   the SYN-U first and defer or avoid sending the Ordinary SYN.
   However, such strategies are local optimizations that do not need to
   be standardized.  The rules below cover the most aggressive case, in
   which the client sends the SYN-U then the Ordinary SYN back-to-back




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   to avoid any extra delay.  Nonetheless, the rules are just as
   applicable if the client defers or avoids sending the Ordinary SYN.

   Table 1 summarises the TCP 3-way handshake exchange for each of the
   two SYNs in the two right-hand columns, between an Upgraded TCP
   Client (the active opener) and either:

   1.  a Legacy Server, in the top half of the table (steps 2-4), or

   2.  an Upgraded Server, in the bottom half of the table (steps 2-4)

   Because the two SYNs come from different source ports, the server
   will treat them as separate connections, probably using separate
   threads (assuming a threaded server).  A load balancer might forward
   each SYN to separate replicas of the same logical server.  Each
   replica will deal with each incoming SYN independently - it does not
   need to co-ordinate with the other replica.

   +------+------------------+--------------------+--------------------+
   |      |                  | Ordinary           | Upgraded           |
   |      |                  | Connection         | Connection         |
   +------+------------------+--------------------+--------------------+
   | 1    | Upgraded Client  | >SYN               | >SYN-U             |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | /\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ |
   | 2    |  Legacy Server   | <SYN/ACK           | <SYN/ACK           |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 3a   | Upgraded Client  | Waits for response |                    |
   |      |                  | to both SYNs       |                    |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 3b   |        "         | >ACK               | >RST               |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 4    |                  | Cont...            |                    |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | /\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ |
   | 2    | Upgraded Server  | <SYN/ACK           | <SYN/ACK-U         |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 3a   | Upgraded Client  | Waits for response |                    |
   |      |                  | to SYN-U           |                    |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 3b   |        "         | >RST               | >ACK               |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 4    |                  |                    | Cont...            |
   +------+------------------+--------------------+--------------------+

           Table 1: Dual 3-Way Handshake in Two Server Scenarios





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   Each column of the table shows the required 3-way handshake exchange
   within each connection, using the following symbols:

      > means client to server

      < means server to client

      Cont... means the TCP connection continues as normal

   The connection that starts with an Ordinary SYN is called the
   'Ordinary Connection' and the one that starts with a SYN-U is called
   the 'Upgraded Connection'.  An Upgraded Server MUST respond to a
   SYN-U with an Upgraded SYN/ACK (termed a SYN/ACK-U and defined in
   Section 2.2.2).  Then the client recognises that it is talking to an
   Upgraded Server.  The client's behaviour depends on which response it
   receives first, as follows:

   o  If the client first receives a SYN/ACK response on the Ordinary
      Connection, it MUST wait for the response on the Upgraded
      Connection.  It then proceeds as follows:

      *  If the response on the Upgraded Connection is an Ordinary SYN/
         ACK, the client MUST reset (RST) the Upgraded Connection and it
         can continue with the Ordinary Connection.

      *  If the response on the Upgraded Connection is an Upgraded SYN/
         ACK-U, the client MUST reset (RST) the Ordinary Connection and
         it can continue with the Upgraded Connection.

   o  If the client first receives an Ordinary SYN/ACK response on the
      Upgraded Connection, it MUST reset (RST) the Upgraded Connection
      immediately.  It can then wait for the response on the Ordinary
      Connection and, once it arrives, continue as normal.

   o  If the client first receives an Upgraded SYN/ACK-U response on the
      Upgraded Connection, it MUST reset (RST) the Ordinary Connection
      immediately and continue with the Upgraded Connection.

2.1.2.  Dual Handshake Retransmission Behaviour

   If the client receives a response to the SYN, but a short while after
   that {ToDo: duration TBA} the response to the SYN-U has not arrived,
   it SHOULD retransmit the SYN-U.  If latency is more important than
   the extra TCP option space, in parallel to any retransmission, or
   instead of any retransmission, the client MAY give up on the Upgraded
   (SYN-U) Connection by sending a reset (RST) and completing the 3-way
   handshake of the Ordinary Connection.




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   If the client receives no response at all to either the SYN or the
   SYN-U, it SHOULD solely retransmit one or the other, not both.  If
   latency is more important than the extra TCP option space, it will
   retransmit the SYN.  Otherwise it will retransmit the SYN-U.  It MUST
   NOT retransmit both segments, because the lack of response could be
   due to severe congestion.

2.1.3.  Continuing the Upgraded Connection

   Once an Upgraded Connection has been successfully negotiated in the
   SYN, SYN/ACK exchange, either host can allocate any amount of the TCP
   Data space in any subsequent segment for extra TCP options.  In fact,
   the sender has to use the upgraded segment structure in every
   subsequent segment of the connection that contains non-zero TCP
   Payload.  The sender can use the upgraded structure in a segment
   carrying no user-data (e.g. a pure ACK), but it does not have to.

   As well as extra option space, the facility offers other advantages,
   such as reliable ordered delivery of Inner TCP Options on empty
   segments and more robust middlebox traversal.  If none of these
   features is needed, at any point the facility can be disabled for the
   rest of the connection, using the ModeSwitch TCP option in
   Appendix A.1.  Interestingly, the ModeSwitch options itself can be
   very simple because it uses the reliable ordered delivery property of
   Inner Options, rather than having to cater for the possibility that a
   message to switch to disabled mode might be lost or reordered.

2.2.  Upgraded Segment Structure and Format

2.2.1.  Structure of an Upgraded Segment

   An Upgraded Segment is structured as shown in Figure 2.  Up to the
   TCP Data Offset, the structure is identical to an Ordinary TCP
   Segment, with a base TCP Header (BaseHdr) and the usual facility to
   set the Data Offset (DO) to allow space for TCP options.  These
   regular TCP options are renamed by this specification to Outer TCP
   Options or just Outer Options, and labelled as OuterOpts in the
   figure.

   The first segment in each direction (i.e. the SYN or the SYN/ACK) is
   identifiable as upgraded by the presence of the 4-octet Magic Number
   A (MagicA) at the start of the TCP Data.  The probability that an
   Upgraded Server will mistake arbitrary data at the beginning of the
   payload of an Ordinary Segment for the Magic Number has to be allowed
   for, but it is vanishingly small (see Section 3.2.1).  Once an
   Upgraded Connection has been negotiated during the SYN - SYN/ACK
   exchange, a magic number is not needed to identify Upgraded Segments,
   because both ends know that the protocol requires the sender to use



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   the upgraded format on all subsequent segments with non-zero TCP
   Data.  Aside from the magic number, the structure of the rest of an
   Upgraded Segment is the same whether a) SYN=1 or b) SYN=0.

                                        |    SOO   |
     a) SYN=1                           ,--------->|
   |          DO       |   1   |  Len   |             InOO    |  SPS   |
   ,------------------>,------>,------->,-------------------->,------->|
   +--------+----------+-------+--------+----------+----------+--------+
   | BaseHdr| OuterOpts| MagicA| InSpace|PrefixOpts|SuffixOpts| Payload|
   +--------+----------+-------+--------+----------+----------+--------+
                       |                '----------.----------'        |
                       |                     Inner Options             |
                       `-----------------------.-----------------------'
                                            TCP Data

     b) SYN=0
   |          DO       |  Len   |              InOO     |  SPS   |
   ,------------------>,------->,---------------------->,------->|
   +--------+----------+--------+-----------------------+--------+
   | BaseHdr| OuterOpts| InSpace|     Inner Options     | Payload|
   +--------+----------+--------+-----------------------+--------+
                       `----------------.------------------------'
                                    TCP Data

     All offsets are specified in 4-octet (32-bit) words, except SPS,
                            which is in octets.

       Figure 2: The Structure of an Upgraded Segment (not to scale)

   Unlike an Ordinary TCP Segment, the Payload of an Upgraded Segment
   does not start straight after the TCP Data Offset.  Instead, Figure 2
   shows that space is provided for additional Inner TCP Options before
   the TCP Payload.  The size of this space is termed the Inner Options
   Offset (InOO).  The TCP receiver reads the InOO field from the Inner
   Option Space (InSpace) option defined in Section 2.2.2.

   The InSpace Option is located in a standardized location so that the
   receiver can find it:

   o  On a segment with SYN=1, an Upgraded TCP Sender MUST locate the
      InSpace Option straight after the magic number, specifically DO +
      4 octets from the start of the segment.

   o  On a segment with SYN=0, an Upgraded TCP Sender MUST locate the
      InSpace Option at the beginning of the TCP Data, specifically DO
      octets from the start of the segment.




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   Because the InSpace Option is only ever located in a standardized
   location it does not need to follow the RFC 793 format of a TCP
   option.  Therefore, although we call InSpace an 'option', we do not
   describe it as a 'TCP option'.

   The Sent Payload Size (SPS) is also read from within the InSpace
   Option.  If the byte-stream has been resegmented, it allows the
   receiver to step from one InSpace Option to the next even if the
   InSpace Options are no longer at the start of each segment (see
   Section 2.3).

   On a segment with SYN=1 (i.e. a SYN or SYN/ACK) the Suffix Options
   Offset (SOO) is also read from within the InSpace Option.  It
   delineates the end of the Prefix TCP Options (PrefixOpts in the
   figure) and the start of the Suffix TCP Options (SuffixOpts).  When
   SYN=1, the receiver processes PrefixOpts before OuterOpts, then
   SuffixOpts afterwards.  When SYN=0, the receiver processes the Outer
   Options before the Inner Options.  Full details of option processing
   are given in Section 2.3.

2.2.2.  Format of the InSpace Option

   The internal structure of the InSpace Option for an Upgraded SYN or
   SYN/ACK segment (SYN=1) is defined in Figure 3a) and for a segment
   with SYN=0 in Figure 3b).

    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
     a) SYN = 1
   +-------------------------------+---------------------------+---+
   |   Sent Payload Size (SPS)     |Inner Options Offset (InOO)|Len|
   +-------------------------------+---------------------------+---+
   |         Magic Number B        |Suffix Options Offset (SOO)|CU |
   +-------------------------------+---------------------------+---+

     b) SYN = 0
   +-------------------------------+---------------------------+---+
   |   Sent Payload Size (SPS)     |Inner Options Offset (InOO)|Len|
   +-------------------------------+---------------------------+---+

                      Figure 3: InSpace Option Format

   The fields are defined as follows (see Section 3.3 for the rationale
   behind these format choices):

   Option Length (Len):  The 2-bit Len field specifies the length of the
      InSpace Option in 4-octets words (see Section 3.3 for rationale).
      For this experimental specification:



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      When SYN=1:  the sender MUST use Len=2;

      When SYN=0:  the sender MUST use Len=1.

   Sent Payload Size (SPS):  In this 16-bit field the sender MUST record
      the size in octets of the TCP Payload when it was sent.  This
      specification defines the TCP Payload as solely the user-data to
      be passed to the application.  This excludes Inner TCP options,
      the InSpace Option and any magic number.

   Inner Options Offset (InOO):  This 14-bit field defines the total
      size of the Inner TCP Options in 4-octet words.

   The following fields are only defined on a segment with SYN=1 (i.e. a
   SYN or SYN/ACK):

   Magic Number B:  The sender MUST fill this 16-bit field with Magic
      Number B {ToDo: Value TBA} to further reduce the chance that a
      receiver will mistake the end of an arbitrary Ordinary Payload for
      the InSpace Option.

   Suffix Options Offset (SOO):  The 14-bit SOO field defines an
      additional offset in 4-octet words from the start of the Inner
      Options that identifies the extent of the Prefix Options (see
      Section 2.3.2).

   Currently Unused (CU):  The sender MUST fill the CU field with zeros
      and they MUST be ignored and forwarded unchanged by other nodes,
      even if their value is different.

2.3.  Inner TCP Option Processing

2.3.1.  Writing Inner TCP Options

2.3.1.1.  Constraints on TCP Fast Open

   If an Upgraded TCP Client uses a TCP Fast Open (TFO) cookie
   [I-D.ietf-tcpm-fastopen] in an Upgraded SYN-U, it MUST place the TFO
   option within the Inner TCP Options, beyond the Data Offset.

   This rule is specific to TFO, but it can be generalised to any
   capability similar to TFO as follows: An Upgraded TCP Client MUST NOT
   place any TCP option in the Outer TCP Options of a SYN if it might
   cause a TCP server to pass user-data directly to the application
   before its own 3-way handshake completes.

   If a client uses TCP Fast Open cookies on both the parallel
   connection attempts of a dual handshake, an Upgraded Server will



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   deliver the TCP Payload to the application twice before the client
   aborts the Ordinary Connection.  This is not a problem, because
   [I-D.ietf-tcpm-fastopen] requires that TFO is only used for
   applications that are robust to duplicate requests.

2.3.1.2.  Option Alignment

   If the end of the last Prefix TCP Option does not align on a 4-octet
   boundary, the sender MUST append sufficient no-op TCP options.  The
   end of the Suffix TCP Options MUST be similarly aligned.

   If a block-mode transformation (e.g. compression or encryption) is
   being used, the sender might have to add some padding options to
   align the end of the Inner Options with the end of a block.  Any
   future encryption specification will need to carefully define this
   padding in order not to weaken the cipher.

2.3.1.3.  Sequence Space Coverage

   TCP's sequence number and acknowledgement number space MUST include
   all the TCP Data, i.e. the InSpace Option, any Inner Options, and any
   magic number as well as the TCP Payload.  This rule has significant
   implications, which are discussed in Section 3.2.4.

2.3.1.4.  Presence or Absence of Payload

   Whenever the sender includes non-zero user-data payload in a segment,
   it MUST also include an InSpace Option, whether or not there are any
   Inner Options.

   If the sender includes no user-data in a segment (e.g. pure ACKs,
   RSTs) it MAY include an InSpace Option but it does not have to.
   {ToDo: Consider whether there is any reason to preclude Inner Options
   on a RST, FIN or FIN-ACK.}

   Once a sender has included the InSpace Option and possibly other
   Inner Options on a segment with no TCP Payload, while it has no
   further user-data to send it SHOULD NOT repeat the same set of
   control options on subsequent segments.  Thus, in a sequence of pure
   ACKs, any particular set of Inner Options will only appear once, and
   other pure ACKs will be empty.  The only envisaged exception to this
   rule would be infrequent repetition (i.e. tens of minutes to hours)
   of the same control options, which might be necessary to provide a
   heartbeat or keep-alive capability.







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2.3.2.  Reading Inner TCP Options

   The rules for reading Inner TCP Options are divided between the
   following two subsections, depending on whether SYN=1, SYN=0.

2.3.2.1.  Reading Inner TCP Options (SYN=1)

   This subsection applies when TCP receives a segment with SYN=1, i.e.
   when the server receives a SYN or the client receives a SYN/ACK.

   Before processing any TCP options, unless the size of the TCP Data is
   less than 8 octets, an Upgraded Receiver MUST determine whether the
   segment is an Upgraded Segment by checking that all the following
   conditions apply:

   o  The first 4 octets of the segment match Magic Number A

   o  The value of the Length field of the InSpace Option is 2;

   o  The value of Magic Number B in the InSpace Option is correct

   o  The value of the Sent Payload Size matches the size of the TCP
      Payload.

   If all these conditions pass, the receiver MAY walk the sequence of
   Inner TCP Options, using the length of each to check that the sum of
   their lengths equals InOO.  The receiver then concludes that the
   received segment is an Upgraded Segment.

   The receiver then processes the TCP Options in the following order:

   1.  Any Prefix TCP options (PrefixOpts in Figure 2)

   2.  Any Outer TCP options (OuterOpts in Figure 2);

   3.  Any Suffix TCP options (SuffixOpts in Figure 2)

   The receiver removes the magic number, the InSpace Option and each
   TCP Option from the TCP Data as it processes each, until only the TCP
   Payload remains, which it holds ready to pass to the application.  It
   then returns the appropriate Upgraded Acknowledgement to progress the
   dual handshake (see Section 2.1.1).

   If any of the above tests to find the InSpace Option fails:

   1.  the receiver concludes that the received segment is an Ordinary
       Segment.  It MUST then proceed by processing any Outer TCP




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       options in the TCP Header in the normal order (OuterOpts in
       Figure 2).

   2.  If one of the Outer TCP Options causes the TCP receiver to alter
       the TCP Data (e.g. decompression, decryption), it reruns the
       above tests for an Upgraded Segment.

   3.  If it finds an InSpace Option, it suspends processing the Outer
       TCP Options and instead processes and removes TCP Options in the
       following order:

       1.  Any Prefix Inner Options;

       2.  Any remaining Outer TCP Options;

       3.  Any Suffix Inner Options.

   4.  If it does not find an InSpace Option, it continues processing
       the remaining Outer TCP Options as normal.

   For the avoidance of doubt the above rules imply that, as long as an
   InSpace Option has not been found in the segment, the receiver might
   rerun the tests for it multiple times if multiple Outer TCP Options
   alter the TCP Data.  However, once the receiver has found an InSpace
   Option, it MUST NOT rerun the tests for an Upgraded Segment in the
   same segment.

   If the receiver has not found an InSpace Option after processing all
   the Outer Options, it returns the appropriate Ordinary
   Acknowledgement to progress the dual handshake (see Section 2.1.1).
   As normal, it holds any TCP Payload ready to pass to the application.

2.3.2.2.  Reading Inner TCP Options (SYN=0)

   This subsection applies once the TCP connection has successfully
   negotiated to use the upgraded InSpace structure.

   As each segment with SYN=0 arrives, the receiver immediately
   processes any Outer TCP options.

   As the receiver buffers TCP Data, it uses TCP's regular mechanisms to
   fill any gaps due to reordering or loss so that it can work its way
   along the ordered byte-stream.  As the receiver encounters each set
   of Inner Options, it MUST process them in the order they were sent,
   as illustrated in Figure 5a) in Section 3.2.4.  The receiver MUST
   remove the InSpace Option and TCP Options from the TCP Data as it
   processes them, until only the TCP Payload remains, which it passes
   to the application.  It uses each InSpace Option to calculate the



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   extent of the associated Inner Options (using InOO), and the amount
   of payload data before the next InSpace Option (using Sent Payload
   Size).

   The receiver MUST NOT locate InSpace Options by assuming there is one
   at the start of the TCP Data in every segment, because resegmentation
   might invalidate this assumption.

   Therefore, the receiver processes the Inner Options in the order they
   were sent, which is not necessarily the order in which they are
   received.  And if an Inner Option applies to the data stream, the
   receiver applies it at the point in the data stream where the sender
   inserted it.  As a consequence, the receiver always processes the
   Inner Options after the Outer Options.

   The Inner Options are deliberately placed within the byte-stream so
   that the sender can transform them along with the payload data, e.g.
   to compress or encrypt them.  Therefore, a previous control message
   might have required the TCP receiver to alter the byte-stream before
   passing it to the application, e.g.  decompression or decryption.  If
   so, the TCP receiver applies transformations progressively, to one
   sent segment at a time, in the following order:

   1.  The receiver MUST apply any transformations to the byte-stream up
       to the end of the next set of Inner Options, i.e. over the extent
       of the next Sent Payload Size, InSpace Option and any Inner
       Options.

   2.  The receiver MUST then process and remove the InSpace Option and
       any Inner Options (which might change the way it transforms the
       next segment, e.g. a rekey option).

   3.  Having established the extent of the next sent segment, The
       receiver returns to step 1.

2.3.3.  Forwarding Inner TCP Options

   Middleboxes exist that process some aspects of the TCP Header.
   Although the present specification defines a new location for Inner
   TCP Options beyond the Data Offset, this is intended for the
   exclusive use of the destination TCP implementation.  A middlebox
   MUST treat any octets beyond the Data Offset as immutable user-data.
   Legacy Middleboxes already do not expect to find options beyond the
   Data Offset anyway.

   A TCP implementation is not necessarily aware whether it is deployed
   in a middlebox or in a destination, e.g. a split TCP connection might
   use a regular off-the-shelf TCP implementation.  Therefore, a



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   general-purpose TCP that implements the present specification will
   need a configuration switch to disable any search for options beyond
   the Data Offset.

2.4.  Exceptions

   {ToDo: Define behaviour of forwarding or receiving nodes if the
   structure or format of an Upgraded Segment is not as specified.}

   If an Upgraded TCP Receiver receives an InSpace Option with a Length
   it does not recognise as valid, it MUST drop the packet and
   acknowledge the octets up to the start of the unrecognised option.

   Values of Sent Payload Size greater than 2^16 - 25 (=65,511) octets
   MUST be treated as the distance to the next InSpace option, but they
   MUST NOT be taken as indicative of the size of the TCP Payload when
   it was sent.  This is because the TCP Payload in even an IPv6 (non-
   jumbogram) packet cannot be greater than (2^16 -1 - 20 - 4) octets
   (given the minimum TCP header is 20 octets and the minimum InSpace
   Option is 4 octets).  A Sent Payload Size of 0xFFFF octets MAY be
   used to minimise the occurrence of empty InSpace options without
   permanently disabling the Inner Space protocol for the rest of the
   connection.

2.5.  Echo TCP Option

   {Temporary note: This section will be taken out into a stand-alone
   Draft.  It is initially included here for convenience.}

   The Inner Space protocol allows a potentially large amount of control
   state to be negotiated during the SYN exchange.  The SYN Cookie
   mechanism [RFC4987] embeds the cookie within part of the TCP Initial
   Sequence Number, so a server can only store a limited amount of state
   in the cookie.  The only reason that space is limited is that servers
   cannot assume all clients will support a cookie mechanism that could
   hold more information.  The simple solution to this problem is to
   make a generic cookie-echo mechanism a prerequisite for all client
   InSpace implementations.

    0                   1                   2
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3   /|   ...
   +---------------+---------------+-----------------/ | /---------+
   |      Echo     |    Length     |  OpaqueCookie   /||/  ...     |
   +---------------+---------------+----------------/ | /----------+
                                                      |/

                       Figure 4: The Echo TCP Option




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   The Echo TCP option is defined in Figure 4.  The option Kind is Echo
   with value {ToDo: Value TBA}. The Length in octets can be any value
   greater than 1.  The OpaqueCookie field is available for the server
   to fill with any amount of any type of data it wishes to store in the
   cookie, only constrained in size to an integer number of octets.  The
   server can locate the option in a SYN/ACK, either as an Outer or an
   Inner TCP Option.

   If a TCP receiver receives an Echo TCP option, it MUST echo an
   identical Echo TCP option in the following ACK.

   A client MAY send an empty Echo TCP option on the SYN to indicate
   that it supports the Echo facility.  A client implementation of the
   Inner Space protocol MUST implement the Echo TCP option.  Therefore a
   SYN-U is sufficient to imply support for the Echo facility without
   having to send an empty Echo TCP option on a SYN as well.

   The mechanism a server uses to determine whether the echoed contents
   of the cookie are the same as the contents it sent are implementation
   dependent and do not need to be standardised.

3.  Design Rationale

   This section is informative, not normative.

3.1.  Dual Handshake and Migration to Single Handshake

   In traditional [RFC0793] TCP, the space for options is limited to 40B
   by the maximum possible Data Offset.  Before a TCP sender places
   options beyond that, it has to be sure that the receiver will
   understand the upgraded protocol, otherwise it will confuse and
   potentially crash the application by passing it TCP options as if
   they were payload data.

   The Dual Handshake (Section 2.1.1) ensures that a Legacy TCP Server
   will never pass on TCP options as if they were user-data.  If a SYN
   carries TCP Data, a TCP server typically holds it back from the
   application until the 3-way handshake completes.  This gives the
   client the opportunity to abort the Upgraded Connection if the
   response from the server shows it does not recognise an Upgraded SYN.

   The strategy of sending two SYNs in parallel is not essential to the
   Alternative SYN approach.  It is merely an initial strategy that
   minimises latency when the client does not know whether the server
   has been upgraded.  Evolution to a single SYN with greater option
   space could proceed as follows:





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   o  Clients could maintain a white-list of upgraded servers discovered
      by experience and send just the Upgraded SYN-U in these cases.

   o  Then, for white-listed servers, the client could send an Ordinary
      SYN only in the rare cases when an attempt to use an Upgraded
      Connection had previously failed (perhaps a mobile client
      encountering a new blockage on a new path to a server that it had
      previously accessed over a good path).

   o  In the longer term, once it can be assumed that most servers are
      upgraded and the risk of having to fall back to legacy has dropped
      to near-zero, clients could send just the Upgraded SYN first,
      without maintaining a white-list, but still be prepared to send an
      Ordinary SYN in the rare cases when that might fail.

   There is concern that, although dual handshake approaches might well
   eventually migrate to a single handshake, they do not scale when
   there are numerous choices to be made simultaneously.  For instance:

   o  trying IPv6 then IPv4 [RFC6555];

   o  and trying SCTP and TCP in parallel
      [I-D.wing-tsvwg-happy-eyeballs-sctp];

   o  and trying ECN and non-ECN in parallel;

   o  and so on.

   Nonetheless, it is not necessary to try every possible combination of
   N choices, which would otherwise require 2^N handshakes (assuming
   each choice is between two options).  Instead, a selection of the
   choices could be attempted together.  At the extreme, two handshakes
   could be attempted, one with all the new features, and one without
   all the new features.

3.2.  In-Band Inner Option Space

3.2.1.  Non-Deterministic Magic Number Approach

   This section justifies the magic number approach by contrasting it
   with a more 'conventional' approach.  A conventional approach would
   use a regular (Outer) TCP option to point to the dividing line within
   the TCP Data between the extra Inner Options and the TCP Payload.

   This 'conventional' approach cannot provide extra option space over a
   path on which a middlebox strips TCP options that it does not
   recognise.  [Honda11] quantifies the prevalence of such paths.  It
   reports on experiments conducted in 2010-2011 that found unknown



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   options were stripped from the SYN-SYN/ACK exchange on 14% of paths
   to port 80 (HTTP), 6% of paths to port 443 (HTTPS) and 4% of paths to
   port 34343 (unassigned).  Further analysis found that the option-
   stripping middleboxes fell into two main categories:

   o  about a quarter appeared to actively remove options that they did
      not recognise (perhaps assuming they might be indicative of an
      attack?);

   o  the rest were some type of higher layer proxy that split the TCP
      connection, unwittingly failing to pass unknown options between
      the two connections.

   In contrast, the magic number approach ensures that not only are the
   Inner Options tucked away beyond the Data Offset, but the option that
   gives the extent of the Inner Options is also beyond the Data Offset
   (see Section 2.2.1).  This ensures that all the TCP Headers and
   options up to the Data Offset are completely indistinguishable from
   an Ordinary Segment.  It is very unusual for a middlebox not to
   forward TCP Data unchanged, so it will be highly likely (but not
   certain--see Appendix A.2.4) to forward the extra Inner Options.

   The downside of the magic number approach is that it is slightly non-
   deterministic, quantified as follows:

   o  The probability that an Upgraded SYN=1 segment will be mistaken
      for an Ordinary Segment is precisely zero.

   o  In the currently common case of a SYN with zero payload, the
      probability that it will be mistaken for an Upgraded Segment is
      also precisely zero.

   o  However, there will be a very small probability (roughly 2^{-66}
      or 1 in 74 billion billion (74 * 10^18)) that payload data in an
      Ordinary SYN=1 segment could be mistaken for an Upgraded SYN or
      SYN/ACK, if it happens to contain a pattern in exactly the right
      place that matches the correct Sent Payload Size, Length and Magic
      Numbers of an InSpace Option. {ToDo: Estimate how often a
      collision will occur globally.  Rough estimate: 1 connection
      collision globally every 40 years.}

   The above probability is based on the assumptions that:

   o  the magic numbers will be chosen randomly (in reality they will
      not--for instance, a magic number that looked just like the start
      of an HTTP connection would be rejected)





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   o  data at the start of Ordinary SYN=1 segments is random (in reality
      it is not--the first few bytes of most payloads are very
      predictable).

   Therefore even though 2^{-66} is a vanishingly small probability, the
   actual probability of a collision will be much lower.

   If a collision does occur, it will result in TCP removing a number of
   32-bit words of data from the start of a byte-stream before passing
   it to the application.

3.2.2.  Non-Goal: Security Middlebox Evasion

   The purpose of locating control options within the TCP Data is not to
   evade security.  Security middleboxes can be expected to evolve to
   examine control options in the new inner location.  Instead, the
   purpose is to traverse middleboxes that block new TCP options
   unintentionally--as a side effect of their main purpose--merely
   because their designers were too careless to consider that TCP might
   evolve.  This category of middleboxes tends to forward the TCP
   Payload unaltered.

   By sitting within the TCP Data, the Inner Space protocol should
   traverse enough existing middleboxes to reach critical mass and prove
   itself useful.  In turn, this will open an opportunity to introduce
   integrity protection for the TCP Data, whereas today, no operating
   system would introduce integrity protection of Outer TCP options,
   because it would fail in too many cases.  Once the integrity of Inner
   Options is protected, it will raise the stakes.  Any attempt to
   meddle with control options within the TCP Data will not just close
   off the theoretical potential benefit of a protocol advance that no-
   one knows they want yet; it will fail integrity checks and therefore
   completely break any communication.  No network operator will buy a
   middlebox that does that.

   Then middlebox designers will be on the back foot.  To completely
   block communications they will need a sound justification.  If they
   block an attack, that will be fine.  But if they block everything
   abnormal they will have to block the whole communication, or nothing.
   So the operator will want to choose middlebox vendors who take much
   more care to ensure their policies track the latest advances--to
   avoid costly support calls.

3.2.3.  Avoiding the Start of the First Two Segments

   Some middleboxes discard a segment sent to a well-known port
   (particularly port 80) if the TCP Data does not conform to the
   expected app-layer protocol (particularly HTTP).  Often such



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   middleboxes only parse the start of the app-layer header (e.g.  Web
   filters only continue until they find the URL being accessed, or DPI
   boxes only continue until they have identified the application-layer
   protocol).

   The segment structure defined in Section 2.2.1 would not traverse
   such middleboxes.  An alternative segment structure that avoids the
   start of the first two segments in each direction is defined in
   Appendix A.4.  It is not mandatory to implement in the present
   specification.  However, it is hoped that it will be included in some
   experimental implementations so that it can be decided whether it is
   worth making mandatory.

3.2.4.  Control Options Within Data Sequence Space

   Including Inner Options within TCP's sequence space gives the sender
   a simple way to ensure that control options will be delivered
   reliably and in order to the remote TCP, even if the control options
   are on segments without user-data.  By using TCP's existing stream
   delivery mechanisms, it adds no extra protocol processing, no extra
   packets and no extra bits.

   The sender can even choose to place control options on a segment
   without user-data, e.g. to reliably re-key TCP-level encryption on a
   connection currently sending no data in one direction.  The sender
   can even add an InSpace Option without further Inner Options.  Then
   it can ensure that the segment will automatically be delivered
   reliably and in order to the remote TCP, even though it carries no
   user-data or other TCP control options, e.g. for a test probe, a
   tail-loss probe or a keep-alive.

   Figure 5a) illustrates control options arriving reliably and in order
   at the receiving TCP stack in comparison with the traditional
   approach shown in Figure 5b), in which control options are outside
   the sequence space.  In the traditional approach, during a period
   when the remote TCP is sending no user-data, the local TCP may
   receive control options E, B and D without ever knowing that they are
   out of order, and without ever knowing that C is missing.













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   a)                 __ ____ _______ _                    __
                     |__|____|_______|_|                  |__|   control
                     :E : D  :  C    :B:                  :A :
     ________________:  :    :       : :__________________:  :
    |________________|                 |__________________|      data

   b)               __
                   |__|  E
                   |_|__ B               __
                   |____|D              |__|A   control
                    \  /                \  /
     ________________\/__________________\/
    |________________||__________________|      data
                      !
                      !drop
                  ____!__
                 |_______|C

      Figure 5: Control options a) inside vs. b) outside TCP sequence
                                  space`

   By including Inner Options within the sequence space, each control
   option is automatically bound to the start of a particular byte in
   the data stream, which makes it easy to switch behaviour at a
   specific point mid-stream (e.g. re-keying or switching to a different
   control mode).  With traditional TCP options, a bespoke reliable and
   ordered binding to the data stream would have to be developed for
   each TCP option that needs this capability (e.g.  co-ordinating use
   of new keys in TCP-AO [RFC5925] or tcpcrypt [I-D.bittau-tcpinc]).

   Including Inner Options in sequence also allows the receiver to tell
   the sender the exact point at which it encountered an unrecognised
   TCP option using only TCP's pre-existing byte-granularity
   acknowledgement scheme.

   Middleboxes exist that rewrite TCP sequence and acknowledgement
   numbers, and they also rewrite options that refer to sequence numbers
   (at least those known when the middlebox was produced, such as SACK,
   but not any introduced afterwards).  If Inner Options were not
   included in sequence, the number of bytes beyond the TCP Data Offset
   in each segment would not match the sequence number increment between
   segments.  Then, such middleboxes could unintentionally corrupt the
   user-data and options by 'normalising' sequence or acknowledgement
   numbering.  Fortunately, including Inner Options in sequence improves
   robustness against such middleboxes.






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3.2.5.  Rationale for the Sent Payload Size Field

   A middlebox that splits a TCP connection can coalesce and/or divide
   the original segments.  Segmentation offload hardware introduces
   similar resegmentation.  Inclusion of the Sent Payload Size field in
   the InSpace Option makes the scheme robust against such
   resegmentation.

   The Sent Payload Size is not strictly necessary on a SYN (SYN=1,
   ACK=0) because a SYN is never resegmented.  However, for simplicity,
   the layout for a SYN is made the same as for a SYN/ACK.  This future-
   proofs the protocol against the possibility that SYNs might be
   resegmented in future.  And it makes it easy to introduce the
   alternative segment structure of Appendix A.4 if it is needed.

3.3.  Rationale for the InSpace Option Format

   The format of the InSpace Option (Figure 3) does not necessarily have
   to comply with the RFC 793 format for TCP options, because it is not
   intended to ever appear in a sequence of TCP options.  In particular,
   it does not need an Option Kind, because the option is always in a
   known location.  In effect the magic number serves as a multi-octet
   Option Kind for the first InSpace Option, and the location of each
   subsequent options is always known as an offset from the previous
   one, using InOO and Sent Payload Size fields.

   Other aspects of the layout are justified as follows:

   Length:  Whatever the size of the InSpace Option, the right-hand edge
      of the Length field is always located 4 octets from the start of
      the option, so that the receiver can find it to determine the
      layout of the rest of the option.  The option is always a multiple
      of 4 octets long, so that any subsequent Inner TCP Options comply
      with TCP's option alignment requirements.

   Sent Payload Size:  This field is 16 bits wide, which is reasonable
      given segment size cannot exceed the limits set by the Total
      Length field in the IPv4 header and the Payload Length field in
      the IPv6 header, both of which are 16 bits wide.

      If the sender were to use a jumbogram [RFC2675], it could use the
      Jumbo InSpace Option defined in Appendix A.3, which offers a
      32-bit Sent Payload Size field.  The Jumbo InSpace Option is not
      mandatory to implement for the present experimental specification.
      Even if it is implemented, it is only defined when SYN=0, given
      use of a jumbogram for a SYN or SYN/ACK would significantly exceed
      other limits that TCP sets for these segments.




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   InSpace Options Offset  The 14-bit field is in units of 4-octet
      words, in order to restrict Inner Options to no less than the size
      of a maximum sized segment (given 4 * 2^14 = 2^16 octets).

   When SYN=1 the layout of the InSpace Option is extended to include:

   Suffix Options Offset:  The SOO field is the same 14-bit width as the
      InOO field, and for the same reason.  Both the SOO and InOO fields
      are aligned 2 bits to the left of a word boundary so that they can
      be used directly in units of octets by masking out the 2-bit field
      to the right.

   Magic Number B:  The 32-bit size of Magic Number A is not enough to
      reduce the probability of mistaking the start of an Ordinary SYN
      Payload for the start of the Inner Space protocol.  A 64-bit magic
      number could have been provided by using the next 4-octet word,
      but this would be unnecessarily large.  Therefore, when SYN=1, 16
      more bits of magic number are provided within the InSpace Option.
      Otherwise, these 16-bits would only have to be used for padding to
      align with the next 4-octet word boundary anyway.

3.4.  Protocol Overhead

   The overhead of the Inner Space protocol is quantified as follows:

   Dual Handshake:

      Latency:  The latency overhead is zero whether accessing an
         Upgraded Server or a Legacy Server.

      Connection Rate:  The typical connection rate will inflate by P*D,
         where:

         P  [0-100%] is the proportion of connections that use extra
            option space;

         D  [0-100%] is the proportion of these that use a dual
            handshake (the remainder use a single handshake, e.g. by
            caching knowledge of upgraded servers).

         For example, if P=80% and D=10%, the connection rate will
         inflate by 8%. P is difficult to predict.  D is likely to be
         small, and in the longer term it should reduce to the
         proportion of connections to remaining legacy servers, which
         are likely to be the less frequently accessed ones.  In the
         worst case if both P & D are 100%, the maximum that the
         connection rate can inflate by is 100% (i.e. to twice present
         levels).



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      Connection State:  Connection state on servers and middleboxes
         will inflate by P*D/R, where

         R  is the average hold time of connection state measured in
            round trip times

         This is because a server or middlebox only holds dual
         connection state for one round trip, until the RST on one of
         the two connections.  For example, keeping P & D as they were
         in the above example, if R = 3 round trips {ToDo: TBA},
         connection state would inflate by 2.7%. In the longer term, any
         extra connection state would be focused on legacy servers, with
         none on upgraded servers.  Therefore, if memory for dual
         handshake flow state was a problem, upgrading the server to
         support the Inner Space protocol would solve the problem.

      Network Traffic:  The network traffic overhead is 2*H*P*D/J
         counting in bytes or 2*P*D/K counting in packets, where

         H  is 88B for IPv4 or 108B for IPv6 (assuming the Ordinary SYN
            and SYN/ACK have a TCP header packed to the maximum of 60B
            with TCP options, they have no TCP payload, their IP headers
            have no extensions and the InSpace Option in the SYN-U and
            SYN/ACK-U is 8B);

         J  is the average number of bytes per TCP connection (in both
            directions)

         K  is the average number of packets per TCP connection (in both
            directions);

         For example, keeping and P & D as they were in the above
         example, if J = 50KiB for IPv4 and K = 70 packets (ToDo: TBA),
         traffic overhead would be 0.03% counting in bytes or 0.2%
         counting in packets.

      Processing:  {ToDo: Implementation tests}

   InSpace Option on every non-empty SYN=0 segment:

      Network Traffic:  The traffic overhead is P*Q*4/F, where

         Q  is the proportion of Inner Space connections that leave the
            protocol enabled after the initial handshake;

         F  is the average frame size in bytes (assuming one segment per
            frame).




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         This is because the InSpace option adds 4B per segment.  For
         example, keeping P as it was in the above example and taking
         Q=10% and F=750B, the traffic overhead is 0.04%. It is as
         difficult to predict Q as it is to predict P.

      Processing:  {ToDo: Implementation tests}

4.  Interaction with Pre-Existing TCP

   A TCP option MUST by default only be used as an Outer Option, unless
   it is explicitly specified that it can (or must) be used as an Inner
   Option.  The following list of pre-existing TCP options can be
   located as Inner Options:

   o  Maximum Segment Size (MSS) [RFC0793];

   o  SACK-ok [RFC2018];

   o  Window Scale [RFC7323];

   o  Multipath TCP [RFC6824];

   o  TCP Fast Open [I-D.ietf-tcpm-fastopen];

   o  TCP-AO [RFC5925];

   o  tcpcrypt [I-D.bittau-tcpinc].

   The following MUST NOT be located as Inner Options:

   o  Timestamp [RFC7323];

   o  SACK [RFC2018];

   {ToDo: The above list is not authoritative.  Many of the above
   schemes involve multiple different types of TCP option, and all the
   types need to be separately assessed.}

   The Inner Space protocol supports TCP Fast Open, by constraining the
   client to obey the rules in Section 2.3.1.1).

   An Upgraded Server can support SYN Cookies [RFC4987] for Ordinary
   Connections.  For Upgraded Connections Section 2.5 defines a new
   SYNCookie TCP option that is a prerequisite for InSpace
   implementations, and provides sufficient space for the more extensive
   connection state requirements of an InSpace server.





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   The interaction with the assumptions about TCP made by middleboxes is
   covered extensively in Section 2.3.3, Section 3.2.1, Section 3.2.2,
   Section 3.2.4 and Section 3.2.5).

   {ToDo: TCP API, TCP States and Transitions, Connectionless Resets,
   ICMP Handling, Interactions with Other TCP Variants, Forward-
   Compatibility.}

5.  IANA Considerations

   This specification requires IANA to allocate four values from the TCP
   option Kind name-space against the names:

   o  "Echo"

   o  "Inner Option Space Upgraded (InSpaceU)"

   o  "Inner Option Space Ordinary (InSpaceO)"

   o  "ModeSwitch"

   Early implementation before the IANA allocation MUST follow [RFC6994]
   and use experimental option 254 and respective Experiment IDs:

   o  0xEEEE (16 bits);

   o  0xUUUU (16 bits);

   o  0xOOOO (16 bits);

   o  0xMMMM (16 bits);

   {ToDo: Values TBA and register them with IANA} then migrate to the
   assigned option after allocation.

6.  Security Considerations

   Certain cryptographic functions have different coverage rules for the
   TCP Header and TCP Payload.  Placing some TCP options beyond the Data
   Offset could mean that they are treated differently from regular TCP
   options.  This is a deliberate feature of the protocol, but
   application developers will need to be aware that this is the case.

   A malicious host can send bogus SYN segments with a spoofed source IP
   address (a SYN flood attack).  The Inner Space protocol does not
   alter the feasibility of this attack.  However, the extra space for
   TCP options on a SYN allows the attacker to include more TCP options
   on a SYN than before, so it can make a server do more option



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   processing before replying with a SYN/ACK.  A server under stress
   could deprioritise SYNs with longer option fields to focus its
   resources on SYNs that require less processing.

   {ToDo: More?}

7.  Acknowledgements

   The idea of this approach grew out of discussions with Joe Touch
   while developing draft-touch-tcpm-syn-ext-opt, and with Jana Iyengar
   and Olivier Bonaventure.  The idea that it is architecturally
   preferable to place a protocol extension within a higher layer, and
   code its location into upgraded implementations of the lower layer,
   was originally articulated by Rob Hancock. {ToDo: Ref?} The following
   people provided useful review comments: Joe Touch, Yuchung Cheng,
   John Leslie, Mirja Kuehlewind, Andrew Yourtchenko.

   Bob Briscoe's contribution is part-funded by the European Community
   under its Seventh Framework Programme through the Trilogy 2 project
   (ICT-317756) and the Reducing Internet Transport Latency (RITE)
   project (ICT-317700).  The views expressed here are solely those of
   the author.

8.  References

8.1.  Normative References

   [I-D.ietf-tcpm-fastopen]
              Cheng, Y., Chu, J., Radhakrishnan, S., and A. Jain, "TCP
              Fast Open", draft-ietf-tcpm-fastopen-10 (work in
              progress), September 2014.

   [RFC0793]  Postel, J., "Transmission Control Protocol", STD 7, RFC
              793, September 1981.

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

   [RFC6994]  Touch, J., "Shared Use of Experimental TCP Options", RFC
              6994, August 2013.

8.2.  Informative References

   [Honda11]  Honda, M., Nishida, Y., Raiciu, C., Greenhalgh, A.,
              Handley, M., and H. Tokuda, "Is it Still Possible to
              Extend TCP?", Proc. ACM Internet Measurement Conference
              (IMC'11) 181--192, November 2011.




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   [I-D.bittau-tcpinc]
              Bittau, A., Boneh, D., Hamburg, M., Handley, M., Mazieres,
              D., and Q. Slack, "Cryptographic protection of TCP Streams
              (tcpcrypt)", draft-bittau-tcpinc-01 (work in progress),
              July 2014.

   [I-D.wing-tsvwg-happy-eyeballs-sctp]
              Wing, D. and P. Natarajan, "Happy Eyeballs: Trending
              Towards Success with SCTP", draft-wing-tsvwg-happy-
              eyeballs-sctp-02 (work in progress), October 2010.

   [RFC2018]  Mathis, M., Mahdavi, J., Floyd, S., and A. Romanow, "TCP
              Selective Acknowledgment Options", RFC 2018, October 1996.

   [RFC2675]  Borman, D., Deering, S., and R. Hinden, "IPv6 Jumbograms",
              RFC 2675, August 1999.

   [RFC4987]  Eddy, W., "TCP SYN Flooding Attacks and Common
              Mitigations", RFC 4987, August 2007.

   [RFC5925]  Touch, J., Mankin, A., and R. Bonica, "The TCP
              Authentication Option", RFC 5925, June 2010.

   [RFC6555]  Wing, D. and A. Yourtchenko, "Happy Eyeballs: Success with
              Dual-Stack Hosts", RFC 6555, April 2012.

   [RFC6824]  Ford, A., Raiciu, C., Handley, M., and O. Bonaventure,
              "TCP Extensions for Multipath Operation with Multiple
              Addresses", RFC 6824, January 2013.

   [RFC7323]  Borman, D., Braden, B., Jacobson, V., and R.
              Scheffenegger, "TCP Extensions for High Performance", RFC
              7323, September 2014.

Appendix A.  Protocol Extension Specifications

   This appendix specifies protocol extensions that are OPTIONAL while
   the specification is experimental.  If an implementation includes an
   extension, this section gives normative specification requirements.
   However, if the extension is not implemented, the normative
   requirements can be ignored.

   {Temporary note: The IETF may wish to consider making some of these
   extensions mandatory to implement if early testing shows they are
   useful or even necessary.  Or it may wish to make at least the
   receiving side mandatory to implement to ensure that two-ended
   experiments are more feasible.}




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A.1.  Disabling InSpace and Generic Connection Mode Switching

   This appendix is normative.  It is separated from the body of the
   specification because it is OPTIONAL to implement while the Inner
   Space protocol is experimental.  It defines the new ModeSwitch TCP
   option illustrated in Figure 6.  This option provides a facility to
   disable the Inner Space protocol for the remainder of a connection.
   It also provides a general-purpose facility for a TCP connection to
   co-ordinate between the endpoints before switching into a yet-to-be-
   defined mode.

    0                   1                   2
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3
   +---------------+---------------+-----------+-+-+
   |  ModeSwitch   | Length=3      |Flags (CU) |I|R|
   +---------------+---------------+-----------+-+-+


                    Figure 6: The ModeSwitch TCP Option

   The option Kind is ModeSwitch, the value of which is to be allocated
   by IANA {ToDo: Value TBA}. ModeSwitch MUST be used only as an Inner
   Option, because it uses the reliable ordered delivery property of
   Inner Options.  Therefore implementation of the Inner Space protocol
   is REQUIRED for an implementation of ModeSwitch.  Nonetheless,
   ModeSwitch is a generic facility for switching a connection between
   yet-to-be-defined modes that do not have to relate to extra option
   space.

   The sender MUST set the option Length to 3 (octets).  The Length
   field MUST be forwarded unchanged by other nodes, even if its value
   is different.

   The Flags field is available for defining modes of the connection.
   Only two connection modes are currently defined.  The first 6 bits of
   the Flags field are Currently Unused (CU) and the sender MUST set
   them to zero.  The CU flags MUST be ignored and forwarded unchanged
   by other nodes, even if their value is non-zero.

   The two 1-bit connection mode flags that are currently defined have
   the following meanings:

   o  R: Request flag if 1.  Request mode is a special mode that allows
      the hosts to co-ordinate a change to any other mode(s);

   o  I: Inner Space mode: Enabled if 1, Disabled if 0.





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   The default Inner Space mode at the start of a connection is I=1,
   meaning Inner Space is in enabled mode.

   The procedure for changing a mode or modes is as follows:

   o  The host that wants to change modes (the requester) sends a
      ModeSwitch message as an Inner Option with R=1 and with the other
      flag(s) set to the mode(s) it wants to change to.  The requester
      does not change modes yet.

   o  The responder echoes the mode flag(s) it is willing to change to,
      with the request flag R=0.

   o  The half-connection from the responder changes to the mode(s) it
      confirms directly after the end of the segment that echoes its
      confirmation, i.e. after the last octet of the TCP Payload
      following the ModeSwitch option that echoes its confirmation.
      Therefore it sends the segment carrying the confirmation in the
      prior mode(s) of the connection.

   o  Once the requester receives the responder's confirmation message,
      it re-echoes its confirmation of the responder's confirmation,
      with the mode(s) set to those that both hosts agree on and R=0.

   o  The half-connection from the requester changes to the mode(s) it
      confirms directly after the end of the segment that re-echoes its
      confirmation.  Therefore it sends the segment carrying the
      confirmation in the prior mode(s) of the connection.

   o  The responder can refuse a request to change into a mode in any
      one of three ways:

      *  either implicitly by never confirming it;

      *  or explicitly by sending a message with R=0 and the opposite
         mode;

      *  or explicitly be sending a counter-request to switch to the
         opposite mode (that the connection is already in) with R=1.

   The regular TCP sequence numbers and acknowledgement numbers of
   requests or confirmations can be used to disambiguate overlapping
   requests or responses.

   Once a host switches to Disabled mode, it MUST NOT send any further
   InSpace Options.  Therefore it can send no further Inner Options and
   it cannot switch back to Enabled mode for the rest of the connection.




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   To temporarily reduce InSpace overhead without permanently disabling
   the protocol, the sender can use a value of 0xFFFF in the Sent
   Payload Size (see Section 2.4).

A.2.  Dual Handshake: The Explicit Variant

   This appendix is normative.  It is separated from the body of the
   specification because it is OPTIONAL to implement while the Inner
   Space protocol is experimental.  It is not mandatory to implement
   because it will be more useful once the Inner Space protocol has
   become accepted widely enough that fewer middleboxes will discard SYN
   segments carrying this option (see Appendix B for when best to deploy
   it).  It only works if both ends support it, but it can be deployed
   one end at a time, so there is no need for support in early
   experimental implementations.

   {Temporary note: The choice between the explicit handshake in the
   present section or the handshake in Section 2.1.1 is a tradeoff
   between robustness against middlebox interference and minimal server
   state.  During the IETF review process, one might be chosen as the
   only variant to go forward, at which point the other will be deleted.
   Alternatively, the IETF could require a server to understand both
   variants and a client could be implemented with either, or both.  If
   both, the application could choose which to use at run-time.  Then we
   will need a section describing the necessary API.}

   This explicit dual handshake is similar to that in Section 2.1.1,
   except the SYN that the Upgraded Client sends on the Ordinary
   Connection is explicitly distinguishable from the SYN that would be
   sent by a Legacy Client (using a simple Outer TCP Option.  Then, if
   the server actually is an Upgraded Server, it can reset the Ordinary
   Connection itself, rather than creating connection state for at least
   a round trip until the client resets the connection.

   For an explicit dual handshake, the TCP client still sends two
   alternative SYNs: a SYN-O intended for Legacy Servers and a SYN-U
   intended for Upgraded Servers.  The two SYNs MUST have the same
   network addresses and the same destination port, but different source
   ports.  Once the client establishes which type of server has
   responded, it continues the connection appropriate to that server
   type and aborts the other.  The SYN intended for Upgraded Servers
   includes additional options within the TCP Data (the SYN-U defined as
   before in Section 2.2.1).

   Table 2 summarises the TCP 3-way handshake exchange for each of the
   two SYNs in the two right-hand columns, between an Upgraded TCP
   Client (the active opener) and either:




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   1.  a Legacy Server, in the top half of the table (steps 2-4), or

   2.  an Upgraded Server, in the bottom half of the table (steps 2-4)

   The table uses the same layout and symbols as Table 1 that have
   already been explained in Section 2.1.1.

   +------+------------------+--------------------+--------------------+
   |      |                  | Ordinary           | Upgraded           |
   |      |                  | Connection         | Connection         |
   +------+------------------+--------------------+--------------------+
   | 1    | Upgraded Client  | >SYN-O             | >SYN-U             |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | /\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ |
   | 2    |  Legacy Server   | <SYN/ACK           | <SYN/ACK           |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 3a   | Upgraded Client  | Waits for response |                    |
   |      |                  | to both SYNs       |                    |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 3b   |        "         | >ACK               | >RST               |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 4    |                  | Cont...            |                    |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | /\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ | /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ |
   | 2    | Upgraded Server  | <RST               | <SYN/ACK-U         |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 3    | Upgraded Client  |                    | >ACK               |
   |      |                  |                    |                    |
   | 4    |                  |                    | Cont...            |
   +------+------------------+--------------------+--------------------+

      Table 2: Explicit Variant of Dual 3-Way Handshake in Two Server
                                 Scenarios

   As before, an Upgraded Server MUST respond to a SYN-U with a SYN/ACK-
   U.  Then, the client recognises that it is talking to an Upgraded
   Server.

   Unlike before, an Upgraded Server MUST respond to a SYN-O with a RST.
   However, the client cannot rely on this behaviour, because a
   middlebox might strip the Outer TCP Option from the SYN-O, turning it
   into a regular SYN before it reaches the server.  Then the handshake
   would effectively revert to the implicit variant.  Therefore the
   client's behaviour still depends on which SYN-ACK arrives first, so
   its response to SYN-ACKs has to follow the rules specified for the
   implicit handshake variant in Section 2.1.1.





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   The rules for processing TCP options are also unchanged from those in
   Section 2.3.

A.2.1.  SYN-O Structure

   The SYN-O is merely a SYN with an extra InSpaceO Outer TCP Option as
   shown in Figure 7.  It merely identifies that the SYN is opening an
   Ordinary Connection, but explicitly identifies that the client
   supports the Inner Space protocol.

    0                   1
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5
   +---------------+---------------+
   | Kind=InSpaceO | Length=2      |
   +---------------+---------------+


                   Figure 7: An InSpaceO TCP Option Flag

   An InSpaceO TCP Option has option Kind InSpaceO with value {ToDo:
   Value TBA} and MUST have Length = 2 octets.

   To use this option, the client MUST place it with the Outer TCP
   Options.  A Legacy Server will just ignore this TCP option, which is
   the normal behaviour for an option that TCP does not recognise
   [RFC0793].

A.2.2.  Retransmission Behaviour - Explicit Variant

   If the client receives a RST on one connection, but a short while
   after that {ToDo: duration TBA} the response to the SYN-U has not
   arrived, it SHOULD retransmit the SYN-U.  If latency is more
   important than the extra TCP option space, in parallel to any
   retransmission, or instead of any retransmission, the client MAY send
   a SYN without any InSpace TCP Option, in case this is the cause of
   the black-hole.  However, the presence of the RST implies that the
   SYN with the InSpaceO TCP Option (the SYN-O) probably reached the
   server, therefore it is more likely (but not certain) that the lack
   of response on the other connection is due to transmission loss or
   congestion loss.

   If the client receives no response at all to either the SYN-O or the
   SYN-U, it SHOULD solely retransmit one or the other, not both.  If
   latency is more important than the extra TCP option space, it SHOULD
   send a SYN without an InSpaceO TCP Option.  Otherwise it SHOULD
   retransmit the SYN-U.  It MUST NOT retransmit both segments, because
   the lack of response could be due to severe congestion.




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A.2.3.  Corner Cases

   There is a small but finite possibility that the Explicit Dual
   Handshake might encounter the cases below.  The Implicit Handshake
   (Section 2.1.1) is robust to these possibilities, but the Explicit
   Handshake is not, unless the following additional rules are followed:

   Both successful:  This could occur if one load-sharing replica of a
      server is upgraded, while another is not.  This could happen in
      either order but, in both cases, the client aborts the last
      connection to respond:

      *  The client completes the Ordinary Handshake (because it
         receives a SYN/ACK), but then, before it has aborted the
         Upgraded Connection, it receives a SYN/ACK-U on it.  In this
         case, the client MUST abort the Upgraded Connection even though
         it would work.  Otherwise the client will have opened both
         connections, one with Inner TCP Options and one without.  This
         could confuse the application.

      *  The client completes the Upgraded Connection after receiving a
         SYN/ACK-U, but then it receives a SYN/ACK in response to the
         SYN-O.  In this case, the client MUST abort the connection it
         initiated with the SYN-O.

   Both aborted:  The client might receive a RST in response to its SYN-
      O, then an Ordinary SYN/ACK on its Upgraded Connection in response
      to its SYN-U.  This could occur i) if a split connection middlebox
      actively forwards unknown options but holds back or discards data
      in a SYN; or ii) if one load-sharing replica of a server is
      upgraded, while another is not.

      Whatever the likely cause, the client MUST still respond with a
      RST on its Upgraded Connection.  Otherwise, its Inner TCP Options
      will be passed as user-data to the application by a Legacy Server.

      If confronted with this scenario where both connections are
      aborted, the client will not be able to include extra options on a
      SYN, but it might still be able to set up a connection with extra
      option space on all the other segments in both directions using
      the approach in Appendix A.2.4.  If that doesn't work either, the
      client's only recourse is to retry a new dual handshake on
      different source ports, or ultimately to fall-back to sending an
      Ordinary SYN.







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A.2.4.  Workround if Data in SYN is Blocked

   If a path either holds back or discards data in a SYN-U, but there is
   evidence that the server is upgraded from a RST response to the SYN-
   O, the strategy below might at least allow a connection to use extra
   option space on all the segments except the SYN.

   It is assumed that the symptoms described in the 'both aborted' case
   (Appendix A.2.3) have occurred, i.e. the server has responded to the
   SYN-O with a RST, but it has responded to the SYN-U with an Ordinary
   SYN/ACK not a SYN/ACK-U, so the client has had to RST the Upgraded
   Connection as well.  In this case, the client SHOULD attempt the
   following (alternatively it MAY give up and fall back to opening an
   Ordinary TCP connection).

   The client sends an 'Alternative SYN-U' by including an InSpaceU
   Outer TCP Option (Figure 8).  This Alternative SYN-U merely flags
   that the client is attempting to open an Upgraded Connection.  The
   client MUST NOT include any Inner Options or InSpace Option or Magic
   Number.  If the previous aborted SYN/ACK-U acknowledged the data that
   the client sent within the original SYN-U, the client SHOULD resend
   the TCP Payload data in the Alternative SYN-U, otherwise it might as
   well defer it to the first data segment.

    0                   1
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5
   +---------------+---------------+
   | Kind=InSpaceU | Length=2      |
   +---------------+---------------+


                   Figure 8: An InSpaceU Flag TCP option

   An InSpaceU Flag TCP Option has option Kind InSpaceU with value
   {ToDo: Value TBA} and MUST have Length = 2 octets.

   To use this option, the client MUST place it with the Outer TCP
   Options.  A Legacy Server will just ignore this TCP option, which is
   the normal behaviour for an option that TCP does not recognise
   [RFC0793].  Because the client has received a RST from the server in
   response to the SYN-O it can assume that the server is upgraded.  So
   the client probably only needs to send a single Alternative SYN-U in
   this repeat attempt.  Nonetheless, the RST might have been spurious.
   Therefore the client MAY also send an Ordinary SYN in parallel, i.e.
   using the Implicit Dual Handshake (Section 2.1.1).

   If an Upgraded Server receives a SYN carrying the InSpaceU option, it
   MUST continue the rest of the connection as if it had received a full



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   SYN-U (Section 2.2), i.e. by processing any Outer Options in the
   SYN-U and responding with a SYN/ACK-U.

A.3.  Jumbo InSpace TCP Option (only if SYN=0)

   This appendix is normative.  It is separated from the body of the
   specification because it is OPTIONAL to implement while the Inner
   Space protocol is experimental.  In experimental implementations, it
   will be sufficient to implement the required behaviour for when the
   Length of a received InSpace Option is not recognised (Section 2.4).

   If the IPv6 Jumbo extension header is used, the SentPayloadSize field
   will need to be 4 octets wide, not 2 octets.  This section defines
   the format of the InSpace Option necessary to support jumbograms.

   If sending a jumbogram, a sender MUST use the InSpace Option format
   defined in Figure 9.  All the fields have the same meanings as
   defined in Section 2.2.2, except InOO and SentPayloadSize use more
   bits.

   When reading a segment, the Jumbo InSpace Option could be present in
   a packet that is not a jumbogram (e.g. due to resegmentation).
   Therefore a receiver MUST use the Jumbo InSpace Option to work along
   the stream irrespective of whether arriving packets are jumbo sized
   or not.

    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
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+---+
   |                  Inner Options Offset (InOO)              |Len|
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+---+
   |                    Sent Payload Size (SPS)                    |
   +---------------------------------------------------------------+

              Figure 9: InSpace Option for a Jumbo Data-UNJH

A.4.  Upgraded Segment Structure to Traverse DPI boxes

   This appendix is normative.  It is separated from the body of the
   specification because it is OPTIONAL to implement while the Inner
   Space protocol is experimental.  An Upgraded Receiver implementation
   that has implemented this extension will not be able to use the base
   Inner Space protocol if it is sent a segment with this structure.
   However, it will at least fall-back naturally to regular TCP
   behaviour.

   In experiments conducted between 2010 and 2011, [Honda11] reported
   that 7 of 142 paths (about 5%) blocked access to port 80 if the



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   payload was not parsable as valid HTTP.  This variant of the
   specification has been defined in case experiments prove that it
   significantly improves traversal of such deep packet inspection (DPI)
   boxes.

   This variant starts the TCP Data with the expected app-layer headers
   on the first two segments in each direction:

   SYN=1:  The structure in Figure 10a) is used on a SYN or SYN/ACK.
      The sender locates the 4-octet Magic Number A at the end of the
      segment.  An receiver implementation will check whether Magic
      Number A is present at the end of the segment if it does not first
      find it at the start of the segment.  The sender right-aligns the
      8-octet InSpace Option just before Magic Number A.  Then it right-
      aligns the Inner Options against the InSpace Option, all after the
      end of the TCP Payload.  The start of the Inner Options is
      therefore 4 * (InOO +3) octets before the end of the segment,
      where InOO is read from within the InSpace Option.  Although the
      InnerOptions are located at the end of the TCP Payload, they are
      considered to be applied before the first octet of the TCP
      Payload.

   SYN=0:  The structure of the first non-SYN segment that contains any
      TCP Data is shown in Figure 10b).  The receiver finds the second
      InSpace Option (InSpace#2) offset SPS#1 octets from the start of
      the segment, where SPS#1 is the value of Sent Payload Size that
      was read from the InSpace Option in the previous (SYN=1) segment
      that started the half-connection.  Although the Inner Options are
      shifted, as for the first segment, they are still considered to be
      applied at the start of the TCP Data in this second segment.

   From the second InSpace Option onwards, the structure of the stream
   reverts to that already defined in Section 2.2.1.  So the value of
   Sent Payload Size (SPS#2) in the second InSpace Option (InSpace #2)
   defines the length of any remaining TCP Payload before the end of the
   first data segment, as shown.















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                                            TCP Data
                       .------------------------'----------------------.
                       |             Inner Options                     |
     a) SYN=1          |        .----------'----------.                |
   +--------+----------+--------+----------+----------+---------+------+
   | BaseHdr| OuterOpts| Payload|PrefixOpts|SuffixOpts|InSpace#1|MagicA|
   +--------+----------+--------+----------+----------+---------+------+
   |        DO         |        |   SOO    |          |         |  1   |
   `------------------>|        `--------->|          |   Len   |<-----'
   |                   |        |            InOO     |<--------'      |
                                |<--------------------'         |

     b) First SYN=0 segment in either direction
   +--------+----------+----------+---------+---------------+----------+
   | BaseHdr| OuterOpts| Payload  |InSpace#2| Inner Options | Payload  |
   +--------+----------+----------+---------+---------------+----------+
   |        DO         | SPS#1    |   Len   |     InOO      | SPS#2    |
   `------------------>`--------->`-------->`-------------->`--------->|


     All offsets are specified in 4-octet (32-bit) words, except SPS,
                            which is in octets.

    Figure 10: Segment Structures to Traverse DPI boxes (not to scale)

   It is recognised that having to work from the end of the first
   segment makes processing more involved.  Experimental implementation
   of this approach will determine whether the extra complexity improves
   DPI box traversal sufficiently to make it worthwhile.

Appendix B.  Comparison of Alternatives

B.1.  Implicit vs Explicit Dual Handshake

   In the body of this specification, two variants of the dual handshake
   are defined:

   1.  The implicit dual handshake (Section 2.1.1) starting with just an
       Ordinary SYN (no InSpaceO flag option) on the Ordinary
       Connection;

   2.  The explicit dual handshake (Appendix A.2) starting with a SYN-O
       (InSpaceO flag option) on the Ordinary Connection.

   Both schemes double up connection state (for a round trip) on the
   Legacy Server.  But only the implicit scheme doubles up connection
   state (for a round trip) on the Upgraded Server as well.  On the
   other hand, the explicit scheme risks delay accessing a Legacy Server



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   if a middlebox discards the SYN-O (it is possible that some firewalls
   will discard packets with unrecognised TCP options {ToDo: ref?}).
   Table 3 summarises these points.

   +----------------------------------+---------------+----------------+
   |                                  |      SYN      |     SYN-L      |
   |                                  |   (Implicit)  |   (Explicit)   |
   +----------------------------------+---------------+----------------+
   | Minimum state on Upgraded Server |       -       |       +        |
   |                                  |               |                |
   | Minimum risk of delay to Legacy  |       +       |       -        |
   | Server                           |               |                |
   +----------------------------------+---------------+----------------+

    Table 3: Comparison of Implicit vs. Explicit Dual Handshake on the
                            Ordinary Connection

   There is no need for the IETF to choose between these.  If the
   specification allows either or both, the tradeoff can be left to
   implementers at build-time, or to the application at run-time.

   Initially clients might choose the Implicit Dual Handshake to
   minimise delays due to middlebox interference.  But later, perhaps
   once more middleboxes support the scheme, clients might choose the
   Explicit scheme, to minimise state on Upgraded Servers.

Appendix C.  Protocol Design Issues (to be Deleted before Publication)

   This appendix is informative, not normative.  It records outstanding
   issues with the protocol design that will need to be resolved before
   publication.

   Option alignment following re-segmentation:  If the byte-stream is
      resegmented (e.g. by a connection splitter), the TCP options
      within the stream will not necessarily align on 4-octet word
      boundaries within the new segments.

Appendix D.  Change Log (to be Deleted before Publication)

   A detailed version history can be accessed at
   <http://datatracker.ietf.org/doc/draft-briscoe-tcpm-inner-space/
   history/>

   From draft-briscoe-tcpm-syn-op-sis-02 to draft-briscoe-tcpm-inner-
   space-00:
      The Inner Space protocol is a development of a proposal called the
      SynOpSis (Sister SYN options) protocol.  Most of the elements of
      Inner Space were in SynOpSis, such as the implicit and explicit



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      dual handshakes; the use of a magic number to flag the existence
      of the option; the various header offsets; and the option
      processing rules.

      The main technical differences are: Inner Space extends option
      space on any segment, not just the SYN; this advance requires the
      introduction of the Sent Payload Size field and a general
      rearrangement and simplification of the protocol format; the
      option processing rules have been extended to assure compatibility
      with TFO and one degree of recursion has been introduced to cater
      for encryption or compression of Inner Options; The Echo option
      has been added to provide a SYN-cookie-like capability.  Also, the
      default protocol has been pared down to the bare bones and
      optional extensions relegated to appendices.

      The main editorial differences are: The emphasis of the Abstract
      and Introduction has expanded from a focus on just extra space
      using the dual handshake to include much more comprehensive
      middlebox traversal.  A comprehensive Design Rationale section has
      been added.

Author's Address

   Bob Briscoe
   BT
   B54/77, Adastral Park
   Martlesham Heath
   Ipswich  IP5 3RE
   UK

   Phone: +44 1473 645196
   Email: bob.briscoe@bt.com
   URI:   http://bobbriscoe.net/


















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