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The Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP) is a general-purpose transport layer protocol providing a service similar to TCP - plus a set of advanced features to utilize the enhanced capabilities of modern IP networks and to support increased application requirements. Nowadays, there are SCTP implementations for all major operating systems. While SCTP was standardized as an RFC several years ago, there is still significant ongoing work within the IETF to discuss and standardize further features in the form of protocol extensions. In this article, we first introduce the SCTP base protocol and already standardized extensions. After that, we focus on the ongoing SCTP standardization progress in the IETF and give an overview of activities and challenges in the areas of security and concurrent multipath transport.
Date of Publication: April 2011