OFTP2 Implementation Guidelines now available

Right from the early days of Odette, it was recognised that there was a need for a superior File Transfer Protocol to support the exchange of data, especially CAD data, between development partners in the European automotive industry.

This led in 1986 to the publication of the first Odette File Transfer Protocol (OFTP) specification which was taken up enthusiastically by the major automotive players and the software companies who supported them.

Since that time, the OFTP specification has been regularly modified and enhanced to keep up to date with communications technologies such as ISDN and TCP/IP. The latter enhancement (version 1.4) was also published as an RFC by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).

Also, during this time, the use of OFTP has spread beyond automotive to many other industries.

The desire to ensure that the OFTP is always able to take advantage of the most modern communication technologies has now led Odette to develop the protocol to be useable over the public internet.

The public internet is, of course, inherently insecure so, in order to guarantee the security of the highly confidential design and price data that automotive partners need to exchange, the new version of OFTP has had several security features added that can guarantee total security of data from the individual sender in one company to the individual recipient in another.

At the same time various other features have been enhanced in order to improve the useability and acceptability of OFTP across the globe.

This new version of OFTP represents a step change from the previous releases and so is called OFTP2.

The specific features of OFTP2 include:

- Secure authentication
- Data confidentiality
- Digital signatures
- File compression
- SSL session security
- Signed receipts
- International file description
- Increased file size

The current publication only covers the technical specification of OFTP2 but Implementation Guidelines for integrators and users are currently being developed.

In the meantime, if your company would be interested to implement a pilot of the new OFTP2 with one or more of your trading partners, please contact the Odette Programme Manager, Joerg Walther.