[e2e] TCP sequence number reset

Eric Brown eric.brown at vt.edu
Thu Mar 24 06:38:49 PDT 2011

Whether the idea proposed in the draft you are referencing truly
has an analogue in TCP may or may not be true. You haven't included
a reference. That being said, I'd consider this to be a bad thing with
respect to TCP. First and foremost TCP is a distributed state machine,
that is how it is able to achieve reliable and ordered delivery of
data in even the most hostile of conditions. A necessary component of
a distributed state machine is a virtual clock. Sequence numbers are
TCP's virtual clock ensuring that the FSM progresses in order. In the
very least it would be difficult to understand all the consequences of
overloading more semantics on the progression of the sequence space.

--Eric Brown, Virginia Tech

On Thu, Mar 24, 2011 at 03:52:15PM +0800, Kacheong Poon wrote:
> Just want to get some opinion from the list members about an
> idea proposed in an IETF draft.  The equivalent idea when
> applied to TCP is sequence number reset.  The idea is that
> assuming an application can access TCP sequence number with
> each byte of data, an app is allowed to reset the TCP sequence
> number when it wants to.  The sequence number is set to a number
> not acceptable (add 231) in the current connection.  Note that
> there is no clear usage proposed in that draft nor any reason
> that it is needed, just a mechanism to do it.  I want to see
> whether folks on this list think that it is a good or bad idea?
> And why?
> Thanks.
> -- 
> 					K. Poon.
> 					ka-cheong.poon at oracle.com

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