[Docs] [txt|pdf]

Obsoleted by: 495
Updated by: 318
Network Working Group                                      T. O'Sullivan
Request for Comments: 158                                       Raytheon
NIC: 6768                                                    19 May 1971


                            TELNET Protocol

   This request for comment is being circulated by the TELNET committee
   to solicit comments, evaluation, and requests for modification of the
   proposed protocol presented here.  Unless comments are received by
   the writer within two weeks of the date of this RFC, they will not be
   considered in the preparation of official TELNET PROTOCOL document.

   The proposed document is the result of the work of the committee.  It
   represents a TELNET protocol felt to be adequate for initial
   implementation.

   Readers are referenced to the following previous releases of
   information:

      1. Conventions for Using an IBM 2741 Terminal or a User Console
         for Access to Network Server HOSTS
            Joel Winett, RFC 110 (NIC #5809)

      2. Response to RFD 110
            Wayne Hathaway, RFC 135 (NIC #6712)

      3. Level III Server Protocol for the Lincoln Laboratory 360/67
         HOST
            Joel Winett, RFC 109 (NIC #5808)

      4. First Cut at a Proposed TELNET Protocol
            J. Melvin, D. Watson, RFC 97 (NIC #5740)

      5. ASCII Format for Network Interchange
            V. Cerf, RFC 20 (NIC #4722)

      6. Discussion of TELNET PROTOCOL
            Tom O' Sullivan, RFC 139 (NIC 6717)
         (Although relevant to the obsoleted RFC 137 (NIC 6714) many of
         the examples still hold.  A replacement discussion document RFC
         159 (NIC 6769) will be forthcoming in the near future).









T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 1]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


                                 TELNET PROTOCOL



                               A Proposed Document

                      T. O'Sullivan for the TELNET Committee

                     Will Crowther                 BBN
                     Bob Long                      SDC
                     John Melvin                   SRI-ARC
                     Bob Metcalfe                  Harvard
                     Ed Meyer                      MAC
                     Tom O'Sullivan (Chairman)     Raytheon
                     Joel Winett                   MIT-LL




































T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 2]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


Telnet Protocol

   TELNET is a third-level protocol, the function of which is to make a
   terminal (or process) at a using site appear to the system or a
   process at a serving site as logically equivalent to a terminal
   "directly" connected to the serving site.  In performing this
   function, the protocol attempts to minimize the amount of information
   each HOST must keep about the characteristics of other HOSTS.

   Definitions

   Protocol Levels (see Figure 1)

      Level 1
         HOST-IMP protocol specified by BBN in NIC 5735, Specifications
         for the Interconnection of a HOST and an IMP (BBN Report 1822)

      Level 2
         HOST-HOST protocol performed by NCPs as described in Document
         Number 1 (NIC 5413) and subsequent amendments, see RFC 107 (NIC
         #5806)

            One view of the NCP's function is that it takes information
            from the net and routes it to receiving processes via
            mechanisms internal to each HOST; conversely, processes use
            the NCP, via internal system calls, to have information
            routed to other processes in the net (via the other
            processes' NCPs).

      Level 3 (see Figure 2)
         Level 3 is, by definition, the place to which and from which
         the NCP communicates internally in its own host.

            This level may be equivalent to the user process level in
            some systems, but this may not be the case in all systems.
            In using sites, the TELNET process operates at this level.
            In serving sites, the TELNET server operates at this level.

   Initial Connection Protocol (ICP)

      An agreed-upon sequence of level 3 exchanges between two processes
      which is, in general, used to synchronize the connection dialogue
      between the processes, e.g., RFC 80 (NIC #5608) #1, as revised by
      subsequent information.







T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 3]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


   Serving Site

      The HOST into which the TELNET process is directing the user's
      keyboard input and from which the TELNET process is receiving
      control information and data effecting the user's terminal.  At
      the serving site, a TELNET server is executing.

   Using Site

      The HOST in which the TELNET process is executing.

   Sending Site

      The HOST transmitting data, could be either using site or serving
      site.

   Receiving Site

      Converse of sending site.

   User

      The person or process "driving" the TELNET process.

   In providing services the TELNET protocol will use established
   network conventions, specifically the Network Control Program, and
   Initial Connection Protocol referenced in the above definitions,
   using a byte size of 8 bits on the permanent connection.

   The TELNET protocol provides for a Network Virtual Terminal (NVT)
   through which users may transmit and receive data over connections
   between the using site and the serving site.

   The code of the NVT will be full 7 bit ASCII.  The seven-bit code
   will be transmitted in eight-bit bytes, the high order bit set to
   zero.

   It will be the responsibility of the using site to provide its users
   with a means of producing all 128 ASCII codes, as well as a selected
   set of special TELNET control signals (see Figure 3).

   The ASCII character ESC will be employed by the user as an escape
   signal indicating that the next character(s) has special meaning.
   The meaning assigned to escape code will be serving site defined and
   therefore may not be consistant across the network.






T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 4]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


   It will be the responsibility of the serving site to specify for
   users how the NVT code will be used to represent the codes normally
   generated by a local terminal.  The serving sites specification of
   this representation is expected, where reasonable, to map on a one-
   for-one basis for ASCII graphics and controls that are provided
   through local terminals.  The serving site will also specify how the
   escape conventions will be interpreted by the system.

   The end of a line will be represented in the NVT as carriage return
   (X'0D') followed by line feed. (X'0A')

   The protocol assumes that initially the serving site will not provide
   any echo to the using site.

   Each TELNET control signal for which code must be sent over the
   connection will be represented in the NVT by an eight-bit code, with
   the high order bit set to one.  Following are the special codes
   established to date. (U) indicates that in most implementations the
   user would be expected to have the ability to signal the TELNET
   process from his terminal to initiate the code.

   Code X'A0'

      Source:  Both Sites (U)
      Meaning: A DATA TYPE[1] signal indicating that code will be
               transmitted by NVT, i.e., using the seven-bit ASCII
               conventions.

   Code X'80'

      Source:  Using Site (U)
      Meaning: Order using site NCP to send an INS and insert X'80' in
               data stream.

   Code X'81'

      Source:  Using Site (U)
      Meaning: Break or Attention, and reverse break.

   Code X'82'

      Source:  Both Sites
      Meaning: No op

   Code X'83'

      Source:  Both Sites
      Meaning: Don't Echo



T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 5]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


   Code X'84'

      Source:  Both Sites
      Meaning: You Echo

   Code X'85'

      Source:  Serving Site
      Meaning: Hide your input [2]

   Some special TELNET control signals are required to permit the user
   on some systems to send control information to the using site TELNET
   process[3].  These do not require a corresponding control code for
   transmission.  The local TELNET control signals are:

      1. Transmit all data to this point.
      2. Suppress transmission of end of line, send all other data.

   Data is to be forwarded to the NCP for transmission as convenient,
   but at least at the end of line, end of line suppression, and
   transmit signals.  If the normal line length of the sending site is
   greater than the allocation given by the receiving site, the sending
   sites NCP, TELNET process, or TELNET server must be prepared to send
   line segments in convenient lengths until the full line has been
   sent.

   A minimum implementation for TELNET for both using site and serving
   site follows:

      Using Site

         1.)   Provide User (human or process) with ability to cause all
               128 ASCII codes to be transmitted in the required 8 bit
               field to the serving site.

         2.)   Ignore (and strip) all TELNET control characters received
               from the serving site.

         3.)   Provide echo or local print capability to local user
               terminals.

         4.)   Provide for CR-LF end of line convention.

         5.)   Implement local TELNET controls (See discussion above of
               local TELNET control signals) for transmit or suppress
               end of line.





T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 6]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


      Serving Site

         1.)   Provide (and announce) one for one mapping between ASCII
               and Serving Site character and control set (or if Serving
               Site set greater than 128, a sub set.)

         2.)   Ignore (and strip) all TELNET control characters received
               from the Using Site.

         3.)   Assume Using Site will provide local terminal echo or
               print capability.

         4.)   Provide for CR-LF end of line convention.

This document will be revised as necessary to provide conventions for
data types in addition to the NVT ASCII type.





|<------- 32 ------->|<-8->|<-8->|<-- 16 -->|<-8->|<---
+--------------------+-----+-----+----------+-----+------------------
|       leader       |  x  |size |  count   |  x  | TEXT
+--------------------+-----+-----+----------+-----+------------------
|<---- level 1  ---->|
    message leader

|<------------------  level 2  ------------------>|
                  message preamble

                                                       level 3
                                                  |<- message text..-->

                 Figure 1. Network Message on Link 2-31
           Indicating Portions of Interest to Various Levels















T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 7]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


       USING HOST                                       Serving HOST
 -----------------------+                      +----------------------
                        |                      |
    \                   |                      |                  /
Sub- \ -----------------|  +-+            +-+  |-----------------/
Sys-  \                 |  |I|            |I|  |   NCP          /
 tems+--->            <--->|M|---NETWORK--|M|<--->      ^      /
     |  \     NCP       |  |P|            |P|  |  +-----|-----/
     |   \              |  +-+            +-+  |  |     v    /
     |    \             |                      |  | TELNET  /  USER
 TELNET     )___________|                      |--|Protocol(   PROCESS
     |      )           |                      |  |Server <--->Sub
     |    /             |                      |  |    ^^    \Systems
     |   /     TTY      |                      |  +----||-----\ETC
User +--->   HANDLER  <---> Local              |   TTY vv      \
Pro-   /                |   Terminals          |   Handles      \
cesses/-----------------|                      |-----------------\
     /                  |                      |                  \
                        |                      |
 -----------------------+                      +----------------------

<---> TELNET path path

          Figure 2. Current and Candidate Future TELNET Paths



























T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 8]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


+---------------------------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
|\ b8  ->                   | 0  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 0  |
| \ b7  ->                  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 1  | 1  | 1  | 1  |
|  \ b6  ->                 | 0  | 0  | 1  | 1  | 0  | 0  | 1  | 1  |
|B  \ b5  ->                | 0  | 1  | 0  | 1  | 0  | 1  | 0  | 1  |
| I  +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
+  T | b | b | b | b |\COL->|    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
\   S| 4 | 3 | 2 | 1 | \    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
 \   |   |   |   |   | |\   | 0  | 1  | 2  | 3  | 4  | 5  | 6  | 7  |
  \  | | | | | | | | | v \  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
   \ | v | v | v | v |ROW \ |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 0 | 0 |   0  |NUL |DLE | SP | 0  | @  | P  | \  | p  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 0 | 1 |   1  |SOH |DC1 | !  | 1  | A  | Q  | a  | q  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 1 | 0 |   2  |STX |DC2 | "  | 2  | B  | R  | b  | r  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 1 | 1 |   3  |ETX |DC3 | #  | 3  | C  | S  | c  | s  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 0 | 0 |   4  |EOT |DC4 | $  | 4  | D  | T  | d  | t  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 0 | 1 |   5  |ENO |NAC | %  | 5  | E  | U  | e  | u  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 1 | 0 |   6  |ACK |SYN | &  | 6  | F  | V  | f  | v  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 1 | 1 |   7  |BEL |ETB | '  | 7  | G  | W  | g  | w  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 0 | 0 |   8  | BS |CAN | (  | 8  | H  | X  | h  | x  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 0 | 1 |   9  | HT | EM | )  | 9  | I  | Y  | i  | y  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 1 | 0 |  10  | LF |SUB | *  | :  | J  | Z  | j  | z  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 1 | 1 |  11  | VT |ESC | +  | ;  | K  | [  | k  | {  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 0 | 0 |  12  | FF | FS | ,  | <  | L  | \  | l  | |  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 0 | 1 |  13  | CR | GS | -  | =  | M  | ]  | m  | }  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 1 | 0 |  14  | S0 | RS | .  | >  | N  | ^  | n  | ~  |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 1 | 1 |  15  | S1 | US | /  | ?  | O  | _  | o  |DEL |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
         Code Structure      8   7   6   5   4   3   2   1
                        --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---





T. O'Sullivan                                                   [Page 9]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


+---------------------------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
|\ b8  ->                   | 1  | 1  | 1  | 1  | 1  | 1  | 1  | 1  |
| \ b7  ->                  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 0  | 1  | 1  | 1  | 1  |
|  \ b6  ->                 | 0  | 0  | 1  | 1  | 0  | 0  | 1  | 1  |
|B  \ b5  ->                | 0  | 1  | 0  | 1  | 0  | 1  | 0  | 1  |
| I  +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
+  T | b | b | b | b |\COL->|    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
\   S| 4 | 3 | 2 | 1 | \    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
 \   |   |   |   |   | |\   | 8  | 9  | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 |
  \  | | | | | | | | | v \  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
   \ | v | v | v | v |ROW \ |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 0 | 0 |   0  |'80'|    |'A0'|    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 0 | 1 |   1  |'81'|    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 1 | 0 |   2  |'82'|    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 0 | 1 | 1 |   3  |'83'|    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 0 | 0 |   4  |'84'|    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 0 | 1 |   5  |'85'|    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 1 | 0 |   6  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 0 | 1 | 1 | 1 |   7  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 0 | 0 |   8  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 0 | 1 |   9  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 1 | 0 |  10  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 0 | 1 | 1 |  11  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 0 | 0 |  12  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 0 | 1 |  13  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 1 | 0 |  14  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+
     | 1 | 1 | 1 | 1 |  15  |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     +---+---+---+---+------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+----+

 'XX' = HEX designation for codes assigned to TELNET Control Signals.

            Figure 3. Official Network Virtual Terminal Code



T. O'Sullivan                                                  [Page 10]

RFC 158                     TELNET PROTOCOL                  19 May 1971


Endnotes

   [1] A one-byte DATA TYPE signal is sent as the first byte of data
   over a connection.  A default is employed if the first byte over a
   connection has the high order bit set to zero, and it is assumed that
   the seven-bit ASCII NVT convention will be employed.  Most
   implementations and applications may expect the DATA TYPES to be
   symmetrical at any point in time.  (i.e. both using a serving site
   using the same DATA TYPE.)  Other data types for which codes are
   currently assigned are:

      X'A1'  Transparency
      X'A2'  EBCDIC
      X'A3'  Special String to TELNET (I'll use your code)
      X'A4'  End Special String to TELNET (I'll use my code)

   [2] i.e. suppress printing of password.

   [3] In some cases, for prolonged [periods of special treatment, local
   implementation may dictate permitting the user to set a "mode" to
   prevail until explicitly discarded.


          [This RFC was put into machine readable form for entry]
           [into the online RFC archives by Lorrie Shiota 2/02]


























T. O'Sullivan                                                  [Page 11]


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