[Standards] [Fwd: [Council] meeting minutes, 2008-11-05]

Dave Cridland dave at cridland.net
Tue Nov 18 16:53:28 UTC 2008

On Tue Nov 18 05:50:34 2008, Justin Karneges wrote:
> On Monday 17 November 2008 16:33:42 Peter Saint-Andre wrote:
> > Note: The format used for publishing the TXT record value to the  
> mDNS
> > daemon depends on the mDNS daemon in use, and might not follow the
> > binary format described here (e.g., it might consist of a series  
> of
> > quoted strings, one for each parameter).
> Humm, there is something goofy about this text.
> At the high level, a TXT record holds a list of strings; it's a  
> container for
> a string list.  It should be enough for XEP-174 to simply say, "the  
> record must contain the following strings..." and be done with it.   
> It
> shouldn't need to detail out the actual binary representation of  
> the TXT
> record.

> To put it in perspective, XEP-174 also states what should go into  
> an SRV
> record (host, port, priority, weight), but it doesn't discuss the  
> binary
> format of SRV.  If anyone cares about how TXT or SRV records get  
> formatted,
> they can read other specs to find out.
And also agreed.

This is one of the failings of the DNS-SD spec itself, too, which is  
currently in Last Call in the IETF. It's actually entirely due to the  
DNS-SD specification that the entire mess arose in the first place,  
and I've argued (in the IETF) that the specification ought to be  
pulled as a result.

Actually, I've argued that it ought to be pulled and reworked into a  
Standards Track document, too, because of its importance to  
specifications like XEP-0174, and the P2PSIP equivalents.

> I guess what I'm trying to say is that you shouldn't explain the  
> binary
> representation of any of the record types.  Instead, stick to high  
> level
> explanations, which readers can then apply in concept to their  
> relevant
> programming interfaces.  That text-based zone file notation you're  
> already
> using should suffice as a high level explanation.  Nobody's  
> actually going to
> use that zone file notation in their programming, but they should  
> be able to
> read it and figure out what you mean.


People can use the dig tool to extract zone-file-like formatting from  
mDNS and/or uDNS DNS-SD records, and see what the data is actually  
saying for debugging etc, which makes zone file format very  

Dave Cridland - mailto:dave at cridland.net - xmpp:dwd at dave.cridland.net
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