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How would you go about defining a standard? I am defining a protocol for a sort of thing that does not exist yet and I would like to create an RFC for it, and use a well-known port number provided by IANA. How do I start?

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up vote 12 down vote accepted

Check out the RFC Publication Process, which starts out life as an Internet-Draft

The RFC publication process includes the stages described below.

All RFCs are first published as Internet-Drafts (I-Ds). All RFCs have been I-Ds, but not all I-Ds become RFCs...

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Among other things, for your I-D to become RFC you will need somebody else to implement your I-D in a way that interoperate with your implementation... – sergut Jul 24 '13 at 17:32

Step 1. Write it.

Step 2. Implement it.

Step 3. Prove that it works really, really well.

Step 4. Contact ITEF and IANA. They have web sites. for example, lists the working groups. Find the right one. Talk to them.

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If all you need is the port number you can contact the IANA using the form provided on to request a port being assigned to you.

You probably should do that early to prevent having to change the port later on.

For actually writing an RFC see Tom Morgan's answer.

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