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Note: Many topics at this site are reduced versions of the text in "The Encyclopedia of Networking and Telecommunications." Search results will not be as extensive as a search of the book's CD-ROM.

Z39.50 is a U.S. national standard defining a protocol for computer-to-computer information retrieval. It was developed in 1988 (and revised in 1992) by the National Information Standards Organization (NISO), a standards development body that serves the publishing, library, and information services communities. The protocol is often layered over TCP/IP. Internet RFCs related to Z39.50 include RFC 1729 (Using the Z39.50 Information Retrieval Protocol, December 1994), RFC 1625 (WAIS over Z39.50, June 1994), and RFC 2056 (Uniform Resource Locators for Z39.50, November 1996).

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