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Here's to the IETF

I always find it interesting to see how standards bodies work. A group is attempting to form within the IETF, though it???s probably more accurate to say the people are talking about forming a working group, called Network Endpoint Assessment (NEA) which from it???s proposed charter aims to standardize protocols, either existing elsewhere or developing new one, for exchanging posture information between a client, a broker, and a server.
The problems this group is addressing is fundamental and while it seems from the meeting notes at a recent Birds of a Feather meeting that a large number of participants are vendors, a few participants were from companies that will ultimately consume the products the vendors will put forth. That???s a huge advantage of a truly open standards process. This group, if it gets started, may have a significant impact on core network access control interoperability and tangentially the feature sets. Without input from stake holders, critical features may be left out weakening the usefulness of the resulting work. I remember watching the activity in the IPSec working group and the decision to not work on NAPT and user authentication resulted in years of non-standardized solutions to remote access VPN which let???s face it, was the driver in that market.
I would like to see this group form and bring some sanity to the network access control space. I think it would benefit everyone involved.