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Best current practices

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Definition Edit

Best current practice (BCP) means that a certain manner of proceeding is in general the most logical choice — a de facto standard of sorts. This expression is often used in the context of computer programs and their implementation, as well as that of network protocols and their specifications.

A best current practice is only a noncommittal suggestion, as is to be proceeded in a certain case. It is thus more flexible than a standard. As requirements and conditions change, from time to time, another manner of proceeding can be more promising, and subsequently implemented. Should the requirements permanently change, a BCP should be revised.

Internet Engineering Task Force Edit

BCP is also the name of a numbered document series published by the Internet Engineering Task Force. All documents in this series are also Requests for Comments (RFCs); whereas a given RFC number always refers to a specific version of a document, a BCP number refers to the most recent revision of the document. Thus, citations often reference both a BCP number and an RFC number.

BCPs are used to document guidelines, processes, methods, and other matters not suitable for standardization; most notably, the Internet standards process itself is defined in a series of BCPs, as is the formal organizational structure of the IETF, Internet Engineering Steering Group, Internet Architecture Board, and other groups involved in that process.

See also Edit


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