Network Working Group I. Johansson
Request for Comments: 5506 M. Westerlund
Updates: 3550, 3711, 4585 Ericsson AB
Category: Standards Track April 2009 Support for Reduced-Size Real-Time Transport Control Protocol (RTCP):
Opportunities and Consequences
Status of This Memo
This document specifies an Internet standards track protocol for the
Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions for
improvements. Please refer to the current edition of the "Internet
Official Protocol Standards" (STD 1) for the standardization state
and status of this protocol. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
Copyright (c) 2009 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
document authors. All rights reserved.
This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
Provisions Relating to IETF Documents in effect on the date of
publication of this document (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info).
Please review these documents carefully, as they describe your rights
and restrictions with respect to this document.
This document may contain material from IETF Documents or IETF
Contributions published or made publicly available before November
10, 2008. The person(s) controlling the copyright in some of this
material may not have granted the IETF Trust the right to allow
modifications of such material outside the IETF Standards Process.
Without obtaining an adequate license from the person(s) controlling
the copyright in such materials, this document may not be modified
outside the IETF Standards Process, and derivative works of it may
not be created outside the IETF Standards Process, except to format
it for publication as an RFC or to translate it into languages other
This memo discusses benefits and issues that arise when allowing
Real-time Transport Protocol (RTCP) packets to be transmitted with
reduced size. The size can be reduced if the rules on how to create
compound packets outlined in RFC 3550 are removed or changed. Based
on that analysis, this memo defines certain changes to the rules to
allow feedback messages to be sent as Reduced-Size RTCP packets under
certain conditions when using the RTP/AVPF (Real-time Transport
Protocol / Audio-Visual Profile with Feedback) profile (RFC 4585).
This document updates RFC 3550, RFC 3711, and RFC 4585.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction ....................................................32. Terminology .....................................................33. Use Cases and Design Rationale ..................................43.1. RTCP Compound Packets (Background) .........................43.2. Use Cases for Reduced-Size RTCP ............................63.3. Benefits of Reduced-Size RTCP ..............................73.4. Issues with Reduced-Size RTCP ..............................83.4.1. Middle Boxes ........................................93.4.2. Packet Validation ...................................93.4.3. Encryption/Authentication ..........................103.4.4. RTP and RTCP Multiplex on the Same Port ............103.4.5. Header Compression .................................114. Use of Reduced-Size RTCP with AVPF .............................114.1. Definition of Reduced-Size RTCP ...........................124.2. Algorithm Considerations ..................................124.2.1. Verification of Delivery ...........................124.2.2. Single vs Multiple RTCP in a Reduced-Size RTCP .....134.2.3. Enforcing Compound RTCP ............................134.2.4. Immediate Feedback Mode ............................145. Signaling ......................................................146. Security Considerations ........................................147. IANA Considerations ............................................148. Acknowledgements ...............................................159. References .....................................................159.1. Normative References ......................................159.2. Informative References ....................................16
In RTP [RFC3550] it is currently mandatory to send RTP Control
Protocol (RTCP) packets as compound packets containing at least a
sender report (SR) or receiver report (RR), followed by a source
description (SDES) packet containing at least the CNAME item. There
are good reasons for this, as discussed below (see Section 3.1);
however, it does result in the minimal RTCP packets being quite
The RTP/AVPF profile [RFC4585] specifies new RTCP packet types for
feedback messages. Some of these feedback messages would benefit
from being transmitted with minimal delay. AVPF provides some
mechanisms to support this; however, for environments with low-
bitrate links, these messages can still consume a large amount of
resources and can introduce extra delay in the time it takes to
completely send the compound packet in the network. It is therefore
desirable to send just the feedback, without the other parts of a
compound RTCP packet. This memo proposes such a mechanism for this
and other use cases, as discussed in Section 3.2.
There are a number of benefits with Reduced-Size RTCP; these are
discussed in Section 3.3.
The use of Reduced-Size RTCP is not without issues. This is
discussed in Section 3.4. These issues need to be considered and are
part of the motivation for this document.
Finally, this document defines how AVPF is updated to allow for the
transmission of Reduced-Size RTCP in a way that would not
substantially affect the mechanisms that compound packets provide;
see Section 4 for more details. The connection to AVPF (or SAVPF
[RFC5124]) is motivated by the fact that Reduced-Size RTCP is mainly
beneficial for event-driven feedback purposes and that the AVPF Early
RTCP and Immediate Feedback modes make this possible.
This document updates [RFC3550], [RFC3711], and [RFC4585].
The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
"SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this
document are to be interpreted as described in [RFC2119].
The naming convention for RTCP is often confusing. Below is a list
of RTCP terms and what they mean. See also Section 6.1 in [RFC3550]
and Section 3.1 in [RFC4585] for details.
RTCP packet: Can be of different types, contains a fixed header part
followed by structured elements depending on RTCP packet type.
Lower layer datagram: Can be interpreted as the UDP payload. It may
however, depending on the transport, be a TCP or Datagram
Congestion Control Protocol (DCCP) payload or something else.
Synonymous to the "underlying protocol" defined in Section 3 in
Compound RTCP packet: A collection of two or more RTCP packets. A
compound RTCP packet is transmitted in a lower-layer datagram. It
must contain at least an RTCP RR or SR packet and an SDES packet
with the CNAME item. Often "compound" is left out, the
interpretation of RTCP packet is therefore dependent on the
Minimal compound RTCP packet: A compound RTCP packet that contains
the RTCP RR or SR packet and the SDES packet with the CNAME item
with a specified ordering.
(Full) compound RTCP packet: A compound RTCP packet that conforms to
the requirements on minimal compound RTCP packets and contains
more RTCP packets.
Reduced-Size RTCP packet: May contain one or more RTCP packets but
does not follow the compound RTCP rules defined in Section 6.1 in
[RFC3550] and is thus neither a minimal nor a full compound RTCP.
See Section 4.1 for a full definition.
3. Use Cases and Design Rationale
3.1. RTCP Compound Packets (Background)
Section 6.1 in [RFC3550] specifies that an RTCP packet must be sent
as a compound RTCP packet consisting of at least two individual RTCP
packets, first a sender report (SR) or receiver report (RR), followed
by additional packets including a mandatory SDES packet containing a
CNAME item for the transmitting source identifier. Below is a short
description of what these RTCP packet types are used for.
1. The sender and receiver reports (see Section 6.4 of [RFC3550])
provide the RTP session participant with the synchronization
source (SSRC) identifier of all RTP session participants. Having
all participants send these packets periodically allows everyone
to determine the current number of participants. This
information is used in the transmission scheduling algorithm.
Thus, this is particularly important for new participants so that
they can quickly establish a good estimate of the group size.
Failure to do this would result in RTCP senders consuming too
2. Before a new session participant has sent any RTP or RTCP packet,
it can also avoid SSRC collisions with all the SSRCs it sees
prior to that transmission. So the possibility to see a
substantial proportion of the participating sources minimizes the
risk of any collision when selecting SSRC.
3. The sender and receiver reports contain some basic statistics
usable for monitoring of the transport and thus enable
adaptation. These reports become more useful if sent regularly,
as the receiver of a report can perform analyses to find trends
between the individual reports. When used for media transmission
adaptation, the information becomes more useful the more
frequently it is received, at least until one report per round-
trip time (RTT) is achieved. Therefore, there is, in most cases,
no reason not to include the sender or receiver report in all
4. The CNAME SDES item (see Section 6.5.1 of [RFC3550]) exists to
allow receivers to determine which media flows should be
synchronized with each other, both within an RTP session and
between different RTP sessions carrying different media types.
Thus, it is important to quickly receive this for each media
sender in the session when joining an RTP session.
5. Sender reports (SR) are used in combination with the above SDES
CNAME mechanism to synchronize multiple RTP streams, such as
audio and video. After having determined which media streams
should be synchronized using the CNAME field, the receiver uses
the sender report's NTP and RTP timestamp fields to establish
6. The CNAME SDES item also allows a session participant to detect
SSRC collisions and separate them from routing loops. The 32-
bit, randomly selected SSRC has some probability of collision.
The CNAME is used as the longer canonical identifier of a
particular endpoint instance that is bound to an SSRC. If that
binding isn't received and kept current, the receiver may not
detect an SSRC collision, i.e., two different CNAMEs using the
same SSRC. It also can't detect an RTP-level routing loop, with
the result that the same SSRC and CNAME arrive from multiple
lower-layer source addresses.
Reviewing the above, it is obvious that both SR/RR and the CNAME are
very important in order for new session participants to be able to
utilize any received media and to avoid flooding the network with
RTCP reports. In addition, the dynamic nature of the information
provided would make it less useful if not sent regularly.
The following sections will describe the cases when Reduced-Size RTCP
is beneficial and will also show the possible issues that must be
3.2. Use Cases for Reduced-Size RTCP
Below are listed a few use cases for Reduced-Size RTCP.
Control Plane Signaling: The Open Mobile Alliance (OMA) Push-to-talk
over Cellular (PoC) [OMA-PoC] makes use of Reduced-Size RTCP when
transmitting certain events. The OMA PoC service is primarily
used over cellular links capable of IP transport, such as the
Global System for Mobile Connections (GSM) General Packet Radio
Codec Control Signaling: An example that can be used with Reduced-
Size RTCP is, e.g., Temporary Maximum Media Stream Bitrate Request
(TMMBR) messages as specified in [RFC5104], which signal a request
for a change in codec bitrate. These messages benefit from the
usage of Reduced-Size RTCP in bad channel conditions, as Reduced-
Size RTCP are much more likely to be successfully transmitted than
larger compound RTCP. This is critical, as these messages are
likely to occur when channel conditions are poor. Other examples
of codec control usage for Reduced-Size RTCP are found in
Feedback: An example of a feedback scenario that would benefit from
Reduced-Size RTCP is Video streams with generic NACK. In cases
where the RTT is shorter than the receiver buffer depth, generic
NACK can be used to request retransmission of missing packets,
thus improving playout quality considerably. If the generic NACK
packets are transmitted as Reduced-Size RTCP, the bandwidth
requirement for RTCP will be minimal, enabling more frequent
feedback. As in the codec control case, it is important that
these packets can be transmitted with as little delay as possible.
Another interesting use for Reduced-Size RTCP is in cases when
regular feedback is needed, as described in Section 3.3.
Status Reports: One proposed idea is to transmit small measurement
or status reports in Reduced-Size RTCP, and to split the minimal
compound RTCP and transmit the individual RTCP separately. The
status reports can be used either by the endpoints or by other
network monitoring boxes in the network. The benefit is that,
with some radio access technologies, small packets are more robust
to poor radio conditions than large packets. Additionally, with
small (report) packets, there is a smaller risk that the report
packets will affect the channel upon which they report. Another
benefit is that it is possible, with Reduced-Size RTCP, to allow,
for example, anonymous status reporting to be transmitted
unencrypted. This is something that may be beneficial, for
instance, for network monitoring purposes.
3.3. Benefits of Reduced-Size RTCP
As mentioned in the introduction, most advantages of using Reduced-
Size RTCP packets exist in cases when the available RTCP bitrate is
limited. This is because they can become substantially smaller than
compound packets. A compound packet is forced to contain both an RR
or an SR and the CNAME SDES item. The RR containing a report block
for a single source is 32 bytes, an SR is 52 bytes. Both may be
larger if they contain report blocks for multiple sources. The SDES
packet containing a CNAME item will be 10 bytes plus the CNAME string
length. Here, it is reasonable that the CNAME string is at least 10
bytes to get a decent collision resistance. If the recommended form
of user@host is used, then most strings will be longer than 20
characters. Thus, a Reduced-Size RTCP can become at least 70-80
bytes smaller than the compound packet.
For low bitrate links, the benefits of this reduction in size are as
o For links where the packet-loss rate grows with the packet size,
smaller packets are less likely to be dropped. Radio links are an
example of such links. In the cellular world, there exist links
that are optimized to handle RTP packets sized for carrying
compressed speech. This increases the capacity and coverage for
voice services in a given wireless network. Minimal compound RTCP
packets are commonly 2-3 times the size of an RTP packet carrying
compressed speech. If the speech packet over such a bearer has a
packet-loss probability of p, then the RTCP packet will experience
a loss probability of 1-(1-p)^x, where x is the number of
fragments the compound packet will be split into on the link
layer, i.e., commonly into 2 or 3 fragments.
o There is a shorter serialization time, i.e., the time it takes the
link to transmit the packet. For slower links, this time can be
substantial. For example, transmitting 120 bytes over a link
interface capable of 30 kbps takes 32 milliseconds (ms), assuming
uniform transmission rate.
In cases when Reduced-Size RTCP carries important and time-sensitive
feedback, both shorter serialization time and the lower loss
probability are important to enable the best possible functionality.
Having a packet-loss rate that is much higher for the feedback
packets than the media packets hurts when trying to perform media
adaptation to, for example, handle the changed performance present at
the cell border in a cellular system.
For high-bitrate applications, there is usually no problem to supply
RTCP with sufficient bitrates. When using AVPF, one can use the
"trr-int" parameter to restrict the regular reporting interval to
approximately once per RTT or less often. As in most cases, there is
little reason to provide regular reports of higher density than this;
any additional bandwidth can then be used for feedback messages. The
benefit of Reduced-Size RTCP in this case is limited, but exists.
One typical example is video using generic NACK in cases where the
RTT is low. Using Reduced-Size RTCP would reduce the total amount of
bits used for RTCP. This is primarily applicable if the number of
reports is large. This would also result in lower processing delay
and less complexity for the feedback packets, as they do not need to
query the RTCP database to construct the right messages.
As message size is generally a smaller issue at higher bitrates, it
is also possible to transmit multiple RTCP in each lower-layer
datagram in these cases. The motivation behind Reduced-Size RTCP in
this case is not size, rather it is to avoid the extra overhead
caused by inclusion of the SR/RR and SDES CNAME items in each
Independently of the link type, there are additional benefits with
sending feedback in small Reduced-Size RTCP. Applications that use
RTCP AVPF in Early RTCP or Immediate Feedback mode need to send
frequent event-driven feedback. Under these circumstances, the risk
is reduced that the RTCP bandwidth becomes too high during periods of
heavy feedback signaling.
In cases when regular feedback is needed, such as the profile under
development for TCP friendly rate control (TFRC) for RTP
[TCP-FRIEND], the size of compound RTCPs can result in very high
bandwidth requirements if the round-trip time is short. For this
particular application, Reduced-Size RTCP gives a very substantial
3.4. Issues with Reduced-Size RTCP
This section describes the known issues with Reduced-Size RTCP and
also provides a brief analysis of their effects and mitigation.
3.4.1. Middle Boxes
Middle boxes in the network may discard RTCP that do not follow the
rules outlined in Section 6.1 of RFC 3550. Newer report types may be
interpreted as unknown by the middle box. For instance, if the
payload type number is 207 instead of 200 or 201, it may be treated
as unknown. The effect of this might, for instance, be that compound
RTCP would get through while the Reduced-Size RTCP would be lost.
Verification of the delivery of Reduced-Size RTCP is discussed in
3.4.2. Packet Validation
A Reduced-Size RTCP packet will be discarded by the packet validation
code in Appendix A of [RFC3550]. This has several impacts:
Weakened Packet Validation: The packet validation code needs to be
rewritten to accept Reduced-Size RTCP. In particular, this
affects Section 9.1 in [RFC3550] in the sense that the header
verification must take into account that the payload type numbers
for the (first) RTCP in the lower-layer datagram may differ from
200 or 201 (SR or RR). One potential effect of this change is
much weaker validation that received packets actually are RTCP and
not packets of some other type being wrongly delivered. Thus,
some consideration should be given to ensure the best possible
validation is available, for example, restricting Reduced-Size
RTCP to contain only some specific RTCP packet types that are
preferably signalled on a per-session basis. However, the
application of a security mechanism for source authentication on
the packets will provide much stronger protection.
Old RTP Receivers: Any RTCP receiver without an updated packet
validation code will discard the Reduced-Size RTCP, which means
that the receiver will not see e.g., the contained feedback
messages. The effect of this depends on the type of feedback
message and the role of the receiver. For example, this may cause
complete function loss in the case of attempting to send a
Reduced-Size NACK message (see Section 6.2.1 of [RFC4585]) to a
non-updated media sender in a session using the retransmission
scheme defined by [RFC4588]. This type of discarding would also
affect the feedback suppression defined in AVPF. The result would
be a partitioning of the receivers within the session, with the
old receivers only seeing the compound RTCP feedback messages and
the newer ones seeing both. In this case, the old receivers may
send feedback messages for events already reported on in Reduced-
Bandwidth Considerations: The discarding of Reduced-Size RTCP would
affect the RTCP transmission calculation in that the avg_rtcp_size
value would become larger than for RTP receivers that exclude the
Reduced-Size RTCP in this calculation (assuming that Reduced-Size
RTCP are smaller than compound ones). Therefore, these senders
would under-utilize the available bitrate and send with a longer
interval than updated receivers. For most sessions, this should
not be an issue. However, for sessions with a large portion of
Reduced-Size RTCP, the updated receivers may time out non-updated
senders prematurely. This is, however, not likely to occur, as
the time between compound RTCP transmissions needs to become 5
times that used by the Reduced-Size RTCP senders for it to happen.
Computation of avg_rtcp_size: Long intervals between compound RTCP
with many Reduced-Size RTCP in between may lead to a computation
of a value for avg_rtcp_size that varies greatly over time.
Investigation shows that although it varies, this is not enough of
a problem to warrant further changes or complexities to the RTCP
The Secure Real-time Transport Protocol (SRTP) presents a problem for
Reduced-Size RTCP. Section 3.4 of [RFC3711] states, "SRTCP MUST be
given packets according to that requirement in the sense that the
first part MUST be a sender report or a receiver report".
Upon examination of how SRTP processes packets, it becomes obvious
that SRTP has no real dependency on whether the first packet is an SR
or an RR packet. What is needed is the common RTCP packet header,
which is present in all the packet types, with a source SSRC. The
conclusion is therefore that it is possible to use Reduced-Size RTCP
with SRTP. Nevertheless, as this implies a change to the rules in
[RFC3711], changes in SRTP implementations MAY become necessary.
3.4.4. RTP and RTCP Multiplex on the Same Port
In applications in which multiplex RTP and RTCP are on the same port,
as defined in [MULTI-RTP], care must be taken to ensure that de-
multiplexing is done properly even though the RTCP packets are
reduced size. The downside of Reduced-Size RTCP is that more values
representing RTCP packets exist, reducing the available RTP payload
type space. However, Section 4 in [MULTI-RTP] already requires the
corresponding RTP payload type range not be used when performing this
3.4.5. Header Compression
Two issues are related to header compression. Possible changes are
left for future work:
o Payload type number identification: The Robust Header Compression
(RoHC) algorithm [RFC3095] needs to create different compression
contexts for RTP and RTCP for optimum performance. If RTP and
RTCP are multiplexed on the same port, the classification may be
based on payload type numbers. The classification algorithm must
here acknowledge the fact that the payload type number for (the
first) RTCP may differ from 200 or 201.
o Compression of RTCP: No IETF-defined header compression method
compress RTCP; however, if such methods are developed in the
future, these methods must take Reduced-Size RTCP in account.
4. Use of Reduced-Size RTCP with AVPF
Based on the above analysis, it seems feasible to allow transmission
of Reduced-Size RTCP under some restrictions:
o First of all, it is important that compound RTCPs are transmitted
at regular intervals to ensure that the mechanisms maintained by
the compound packets, like feedback reporting, work. The tracking
of session size and number of participants warrants mentioning
again, as this ensures that the RTCP bandwidth remains bounded
independent of the number of session participants.
o Second, as the compound RTCP packets are also used to establish
and maintain synchronization between media, any newly joining
participant in a session would need to receive compound RTCP from
the media sender(s).
This implies that the regular transmission of compound RTCP MUST be
maintained throughout an RTP session. Reduced-Size RTCP SHOULD be
restricted to be used as extra RTCP (e.g., feedback), sent in cases
when a regular compound RTCP packet would not otherwise have been
The usage of Reduced-Size RTCP SHALL only be done in RTP sessions
operating in AVPF [RFC4585] or SAVPF [RFC5124] Early RTCP or
Immediate Feedback mode. Reduced-Size RTCP SHALL NOT be sent until
at least one compound RTCP has been sent. In Immediate Feedback
mode, all feedback messages MAY be sent as Reduced-Size RTCP. In
Early RTCP mode, a feedback message scheduled for transmission as an
Early RTCP, i.e., not a Regular RTCP, MAY be sent as Reduced-Size
RTCP. All RTCP that are scheduled for transmission as Regular RTCP
SHALL be sent as compound RTCP as indicated by AVPF [RFC4585].
4.1. Definition of Reduced-Size RTCP
A Reduced-Size RTCP packet is an RTCP packet with the following
properties that make it deviate from the compound RTCP packet
definition given in Section 6.1 in [RFC3550]:
o contains one or more RTCP packet(s)
o allows any RTCP packet type; however, see Section 4.2.1
o MUST NOT be used for Regular (scheduled) RTCP report purposes
o MUST NOT be used with the RTP/AVP profile [RFC3551] or the
RTP/SAVP profile [RFC3711]
4.2. Algorithm Considerations
4.2.1. Verification of Delivery
If an application is to use Reduced-Size RTCP, it is important to
verify that the Reduced-Size RTCP packets actually reach the session
participants. As outlined above in Section 3.4.1 and Section 3.4.2,
packets may be discarded along the path or in the endpoint.
A few verification rules are RECOMMENDED to ensure robust RTCP
transmission and reception and to solve the identified issues when
Reduced-Size RTCP is used:
o The endpoint issue can be solved by introducing signaling that
informs if all session participants are capable of Reduced-Size
RTCP. See Section 5.
o The middle box issue is more difficult, and here one will be
required to use heuristics to determine whether or not the
Reduced-Size RTCP packets are delivered. The method used to
detect successful delivery of Reduced-Size RTCP packets depends on
the packet type. The RTCP packet types for which successful
delivery can be detected are:
* Sender reports (SR): Successful transmission of a sender report
can be verified by inspection of the echoed timestamp in the
received receiver report (RR). This can also be used as a
method to verify if Reduced-Size RTCP can be used at all.
* Feedback RTCP packets: In many cases, the feedback messages
sent using Reduced-Size RTCP will result in either explicit or
implicit indications that they have been received. An example
of this is the RTP retransmission [RFC4588] that results from a
NACK message [RFC4585]. Another example is the Temporary
Maximum Media Stream Bitrate Notification (TMMBN) message
resulting from a Temporary Maximum Media Stream Bitrate Request
(TMMBR) [RFC5104]. A third example is the presence of a
decoder refresh point [RFC5104] in the video media stream
resulting from the Full Intra Request that was sent.
RTCP packet types for which it is not possible to detect
successful delivery SHOULD NOT be transmitted as Reduced-Size RTCP
packets unless they are transmitted in the same lower-layer
datagram as another RTCP packet type for which successful delivery
can be detected.
o An algorithm to detect consistent failure of delivery of Reduced-
Size RTCP MUST be used by any application using Reduced-Size RTCP.
The details of this algorithm are application dependent and
therefore outside the scope of this document.
If the verification fails, it is strongly RECOMMENDED that only
compound RTCP, according to the rules outlined in RFC 3550, is
4.2.2. Single vs Multiple RTCP in a Reduced-Size RTCP
The result of the definition in Section 4.1 may be that the resulting
size of Reduced-Size RTCP can become larger than a regularly
scheduled compound RTCP packet. For applications that use access
types that are sensitive to packet size (see Paragraph 2 in
Section 3.3), it is strongly RECOMMENDED that the use of Reduced-Size
RTCP is limited to the transmission of a single RTCP packet in each
lower-layer datagram. The method to determine the need for this is
outside the scope of this document.
In general, as the benefit with large Reduced-Size RTCP packets is
very limited, it is strongly RECOMMENDED to transmit large Reduced-
Size RTCP packets as compound RTCP packets instead.
4.2.3. Enforcing Compound RTCP
As discussed earlier, it is important that the transmission of
compound RTCP occurs at regular intervals. However, this will occur
as long as the RTCP senders follow the AVPF scheduling algorithm
defined in Section 3.5 of [RFC4585]. This follows as all Regular
RTCP MUST be full compound RTCP. Note that there is also a
requirement on sending Regular RTCP in Immediate Feedback mode.
4.2.4. Immediate Feedback Mode
Section 3.3 of [RFC4585] gives the option to use AVPF Immediate
Feedback mode as long as the group size is below a certain limit. As
transmissions using Reduced-Size RTCP may reduce the bandwidth
demand, such transmissions also open up the possibility of a more
liberal use of Immediate Feedback mode.
This document defines the "a=rtcp-rsize" Session Description Protocol
(SDP) [RFC4566] attribute to indicate if the session participant is
capable of supporting Reduced-Size RTCP for applications that use SDP
for configuration of RTP sessions. It is REQUIRED that a participant
that proposes the use of Reduced-Size RTCP shall itself support the
reception of Reduced-Size RTCP.
An offering client that wishes to use Reduced-Size RTCP MUST include
the attribute "a=rtcp-rsize" in the SDP offer. If "a=rtcp-rsize" is
present in the offer SDP, the answerer that supports Reduced-Size
RTCP and wishes to use it SHALL include the "a=rtcp-rsize" attribute
in the answer.
In declarative usage of SDP, such as the Real Time Streaming Protocol
(RTSP) [RFC2326] and the Session Announcement Protocol (SAP)
[RFC2974], the presence of the attribute indicates that the session
participant MAY use Reduced-Size RTCP packets in its RTCP
6. Security Considerations
The security considerations of RTP [RFC3550] and AVPF [RFC4585] will
apply also to Reduced-Size RTCP. The reduction in validation
strength for received packets on the RTCP port may result in a higher
degree of acceptance of spurious data as real RTCP. This
vulnerability can mostly be addressed by usage of any security
mechanism that provides authentication; one such mechanism is SRTP
7. IANA Considerations
Following the guidelines in [RFC4566], the IANA has registered a new
o Contact name, email address, and telephone number: Authors of RFC
o Attribute-name: rtcp-rsize
o Long-form attribute name: Reduced-Size RTCP
o Type of attribute: media-level
o Subject to charset: no
This attribute defines the support for Reduced-Size RTCP, i.e., the
possibility to transmit RTCP that does not conform to the rules for
compound RTCP defined in RFC 3550. It is a property attribute, which
does not take a value.
The authors would like to thank all the people who gave feedback on
this document. Special thanks go to Colin Perkins.
This document also contains some text copied from [RFC3550],
[RFC4585], and [RFC3711]. We take this opportunity to thank the
authors of said documents.
9.1. Normative References
[RFC2119] Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.
[RFC3550] Schulzrinne, H., Casner, S., Frederick, R., and V.
Jacobson, "RTP: A Transport Protocol for Real-Time
Applications", STD 64, RFC 3550, July 2003.
[RFC3551] Schulzrinne, H. and S. Casner, "RTP Profile for Audio
and Video Conferences with Minimal Control", STD 65,
RFC 3551, July 2003.
[RFC4585] Ott, J., Wenger, S., Sato, N., Burmeister, C., and J.
Rey, "Extended RTP Profile for Real-time Transport
Control Protocol (RTCP)-Based Feedback (RTP/AVPF)",
RFC 4585, July 2006.
[RFC5124] Ott, J. and E. Carrara, "Extended Secure RTP Profile
for Real-time Transport Control Protocol (RTCP)-Based
Feedback (RTP/SAVPF)", RFC 5124, February 2008.
SE-971 28 Lulea
Phone: +46 73 0783289
SE-164 80 Stockholm
Phone: +46 10 7148287