The company that now hands out Internet domain names says it has developed a protocol that will let multiple name registries easily interact with each other.
Network Solutions (NSI) says a uniform system for handling name applications and files will not only make domain naming easier but will let users more easily switch Internet service providers (ISPs), similar to the way they can now transfer their phone numbers when they change carriers.
The Remote Registry Exchange Protocol (RREP) is due to be released at the same time as the US government's final report on domain naming, according to Dave Holzman, NSI senior vice president.
The government is currently studying a plan that would break up NSI's monopoly on domain naming. Under the plan, NSI would split into two entities -- one to continue running the core database that contains domain names, the other to sell those names in competition with other registrars.
Holzman said RREP is designed to scale to handle anticipated continued growth in Internet domain naming.
"It's an object-oriented [database] protocol," Holzman said.
RREP also will tackle authentication by providing support for multiple passwords, including separate technical and administration contact keys. Holzman said this will avoid problems that occur when users switch Internet service providers hosting their domains.
RREP was first developed when Microsoft asked NSI to create an automated domain name registration feature for BackOffice, he said. Currently, RREP is being used in-house at NSI.
He said until now, protocols for domain name databases have not been scalable. With 1.3 million domains registered in the U.S. last year, NSI needed a system that could easily ramp up to even larger scales reliably, he said.
While RREP will handle additions, modifications and deletions in the database, it won't deal with billing or other customer information, Holzman said.