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Enabling Dynamic Initialization Products


OBJECTIVE: Develop a capability that enables the integration of additional Parameters into the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol(DHCP) to automate network-parameter assignment to network devices. DESCRIPTION: In the current and future Net Centric environment, networks operate within a meshed network architecture. Operating within such an environment requires that the basic network configuration data be accurate and compliant to network standards. This dictates the need for a single source of such data to be used in configuration and initialization of the network. The current gap within the Army force is the inability to quickly and accurately configure and re-configure the network and information systems in order to provide a robust network to facilitate command and ensure user access anytime/anywhere. In an Army environment, network initialization Data encompasses but is not limited to Unit Reference Number (URN), Internet Protocol (IP) address allocations, and Role Names. On the commercial side for DHCP static allocation, The DHCP server allocates an IP address based on a table with MAC address/IP address pairs. URN's are unique identifiers up to eight digits in length used to identify units, equipment, organizations, vehicles, and messaging groups. They can be thought of as IP addresses specific to the Service Agencies"missions; each one must be unique in order for the systems to communicate properly. As with the DHCP static allocation tying IP"s with MAC addresses, URN"s and role names need to be tied with IP address information. In today"s environment, initialization is accomplished through non-standard processes across uncoordinated organizations while utilizing a variety of non-standard government developed stove-piped tools. The current manual intensive initialization procedures are time consuming, static, and cannot be adapted quickly to mission changes. Mission Command systems are initialized using static IP assignments from a spreadsheet which correlate the appropriate IP address allocations with their corresponding URN and role names. This static process results in a time consuming process to manually enter IP data into each Mission Command system in order to start up the Brigade Network as well as make Network Configuration changes resulting from Unit Task Reorganization an extremely slow process. The goal of this effort is to address Army S & T Challenges for POM 14 to provide timely, relevant, accurate information needed to execute their missions more effectively and efficiently by developing a capability that enables the integration of Unit Reference Numbers and role names into DHCP to automate network-parameter assignment to network devices. This would provide the ability for Mission Command systems to utilize the DHCP process upon startup to ensure that they are receiving the IP address allocation to operate. PHASE I: Identify the present state-of-the-art in Research and Development (R & D) within government, industry and academia on how best to approach this problem. Research and develop the approach for implementation. Develop an overall system design that includes specification and protocol operation. Provide a report documenting the present state of the art, the design approach, the overall system design. PHASE II: Create a software implementation suitable for development and capability demonstration. Conduct testing to prove feasibility over operational conditions. Develop and demonstrate in a realistic environment to Product Director, Tactical Network Initialization. Deliver the prototype system to include Source code and executable with Government Purpose rights. PHASE III: The capability could be used to provide a dynamic initialization capability to systems spanning multiple PM's/PEOs. Demonstration and feedback for integration will be guided by Product Director, Tactical Network Initialization, but ultimate transition target would likely be PM Mission Command for inclusion in the Software Block for the Battle Command Common Software Stack. This capability would have commercial appliacabilty by possibly adding security to the Domain Naming Service Protocol and the enhancement of role based access control used in all windows based servers deployed today. REFERENCES: RFC 2131 Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol RFC 1533 DHCP Options and BOOTP Vendor Extensions CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF INSTRUCTION CJCSI 3156.01, 10 Aug 2007,"MANAGEMENT OF JOINT UNIT REFERENCE NUMBERS"
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