UNINETT or the Norwegian academic network for research and education, was hosting this year's Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) which took place in Oslo from July 12th to 16th. Throughout this five-day event, there were live audio and video feeds from two simultaneous working group sessions. UNINETT was responsible for their transmission. Each of the sessions was multicast over the Internet in one high-bandwidth 2Mbit/s, and one low-bandwidth 128Kbit/s stream.
The IETF is a self-organized international community of network designers, operators, vendors, and researchers who make technical and other contributions to the engineering and evolution of the Internet and its technologies. It is the principal body engaged in the development of new Internet standard specifications. The IETF holds meetings three times per year which are open to any interested individual with access to multicast sessions to participate without the need of physical presence.
The actual technical work of the IETF is done in working groups, which are organized by topic into a number of areas, such as Applications, Internet, IP: Next Generation, Network Management, Operational Requirements, Routing, Security, Transport and User Services. Much of the work is handled through mailing lists. The IETF working groups are managed by Area Directors who are members of the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG). The Internet Architecture Board (IAB) provides architectural oversight. The IAB and IESG are chartered by the Internet Society (ISOC) for these purposes.
At last month's event, connectivity to the European countries was provided via the TEN-155 pan-European research network. Recent work carried out by DANTE secured the support of Protocol Independent Multicast - Sparse Mode (PIM-SM) and of Multiprotocol Border Gateway Protocol (MBGP). At the same time, connectivity was supplied to those European national university networks which still use DVMRP or the Distance Vector Multicast Routing Protocol technology. DANTE achieved this via a gateway between these two multicast technologies which is located in Frankfurt and operated by the DANTE organization.
All MBGP multicast transmissions to the United States were taken care of by NORDUnet, the regional academic research network for the Nordic countries. Each multicast session was recorded and retransmitted from servers at the University of California Santa Barbara during the day according to the West Coast Time. For more detailed information about the event, you can visit the home page of the IETF organization.