Network Working Group D. Latham
Request for Comments: 1039
A DoD Statement on Open Systems Interconnection Protocols
Status of this Memo
This RFC reproduces a memorandum issued on 2-JUL-87 from the
Assistant Secretary of Defense for Command, Control, Communications,
and Intelligence (ASDC31) to the Director of the Defense
Communications Agency (DCA). This memo is distributed for
information only. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
There has been recent rapid progress in the specification and
implementation of computer protocols based on the International
Organization for Standardization model for Open Systems
Interconnection (OSI). The Government OSI Profile (GOSIP), dated 22
April 1987, contains sufficient information to specify adequately and
acquire interoperable vendor implementations of OSI message handling
and file transfer capabilities. Therefore, the policy on
standardization of host-to-host protocols for data communications,
promulgated by USDR&E memo of 23 March 1982, is modified as follows.
The OSI message handling and file transfer protocols, together with
their underlying protocols as defined in GOSIP, are adopted as
experimental co-standards to the DoD protocols which provide similar
services (MIL-STDs 1777, 1778, 1780, and 1781). These OSI protocols
may be specified in addition to, in lieu of, or as an optional
alternative to DoD protocols, in cases where the current DoD protocol
applicability statements apply. They are designated as experimental
because of the limited operational experience currently available
with the OSI protocols and the limited operational, testing, and
security environment currently defined in GOSIP. Services and
agencies choosing to implement OSI protocols at this time should
carefully evaluate these factors and be prepared to deal with the
complications which may accompany the introduction of new technology.
It is intended to adopt the OSI protocols as a full co-standard with
the DoD protocols when GOSIP is formally approved as a Federal
Information Processing Standard. Two years thereafter, the OSI
protocols would become the sole mandatory interoperable protocol
suite; however, a capability for interoperation with DoD protocols
would be provided for the expected life of systems supporting the DoD
In order to extend the OSI protocol capabilities and provide
matures and DoD gains additional experience, the final implementation
details will be provided in a DoD Directive.
 Dinneen, Memorandum of Dec 78, IEN-152.
 Dinneen, Memorandum of Apr 80, IEN-152.
 DeLauer, Memorandum of Mar 82, IEN-207.
 Latham, Memorandum of Apr 85, RFC-945