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Integrated Infrastructure for Instant Messaging
Working Group (I2IM)


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The I2IM working group is dormant for now.
Please contact Steve Olshansky, I2IM working group flywheel, with questions or comments.


Instant messaging (IM) services have traditionally not been integrated into a campus enterprise IT infrastructure. Services like IRC and AOL Instant Messenger have been widely used by university people for university-related work, raising issues of authentication, authorization, privacy, and legal compliance. As IM becomes an increasingly popular alternative to email, users look to campus IT services for the same level of support and integration traditionally provided for central email services. Popular IM services have used proprietary protocols, and standards efforts have not been entirely successful to this point.

Given all this, many campuses have made initial efforts toward designing campus-scope IM services around Jabber/XMPP technology, which has benefited from an open process, open-source implementations, a server-based architecture well-suited to enterprise management, and the likelihood of an IETF standards-track RFC.

Internet2 is technology agnostic, and has not "standardized" on Jabber/XMPP or any other approach. Our goal instead is to explore the needs and applicability of messaging and middleware infrastructures to support federated administration and the needs of Higher Education and Research. As the work of this group proceeds it will involve the myriad of IM vendors to explore and understand the issues exposed and how available technologies may address these issues. Interoperability between SIP, SIMPLE, JABBER, XMPP, AOL, MSN, ICQ, etc, are all on the table. Cooperation and collaboration with other working groups and other bodies is critical to the success of this working group. After exposing and discussing the issues, this working group may determine that currently available technology solves all the problems and is adequate for the issues at hand - this would be an acceptable result if that should come to pass.

NOTE WELL: All Internet2 Activities are governed by the Internet2 Intellectual Property Framework.


The I2IM working group intends to address the following sets of issues:

  1. The WG will research the issues surrounding enterprise integration of IM services with respect to identity, authentication and authorization. Where possible, it will document how to perform this integration and provide forums where people can learn and help each other in addressing these integration issues within campus contexts. Where appropriate, this working group will work with the Jabber Software Foundation (JSF) to consider appropriate modifications or other techniques for achieving better enterprise integration.
  2. The WG will investigate current and future designs of relevant technologies with respect to authorization services, and how authorization information is transmitted and interpreted, especially between domains. It will consider how to integrate these methods with emerging campus and inter-campus authorization systems..
  3. Based on interest and technical feasibility, the WG will consider this range of issues for non-proprietary IM technologies.
  4. The WG will consider and possibly instantiate a national or international federated IM service. It will look at feasibility and applicability of leveraging technical methods like SAML/Shibboleth, and the policy frameworks coming from federations such as InCommon.
Working Group Chair
Michael R. Gettes, Duke University
Working Group Flywheel
Steve Olshansky , Internet2


Minutes of  I2IM Conference Calls

September 3, 2004
July 9, 2004
May 14, 2004
April 2, 2004
March 19, 2004
March 5, 2004
February 20, 2004
February 6, 2004
January 9, 2004
December 12, 2003
November 14, 2003
October 31, 2003
October 13, 2003
October 3, 2003 September 19, 2003

Mailing List

To subscribe to the I2IM list, send email to pubsympa at internet2 dot edu, with the subject line:

subscribe <list name> <your name>
For example:
subscribe i2im Jane Doe

To unsubscribe, send email to pubsympa at internet2 dot edu, with the subject line:

unsubscribe i2im

Draft Documents

These documents are works in progress. For more information on the status of these documents, see the Internet2 Document Guidelines. For reference see also the Internet2 Document Library.

Links - Overview

  • (Coming Soon)

Links - Technical


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