From RFC 793
The Communication of Urgent Information
The objective of the TCP urgent mechanism is to allow the sending user
to stimulate the receiving user to accept some urgent data and to
permit the receiving TCP to indicate to the receiving user when all
the currently known urgent data has been received by the user.
This mechanism permits a point in the data stream to be designated as
the end of urgent information. Whenever this point is in advance of
the receive sequence number (RCV.NXT) at the receiving TCP, that TCP
must tell the user to go into "urgent mode"; when the receive sequence
number catches up to the urgent pointer, the TCP must tell user to go
into "normal mode". If the urgent pointer is updated while the user
is in "urgent mode", the update will be invisible to the user.
The method employs a urgent field which is carried in all segments
transmitted. The URG control flag indicates that the urgent field is
meaningful and must be added to the segment sequence number to yield
the urgent pointer. The absence of this flag indicates that there is
no urgent data outstanding.
To send an urgent indication the user must also send at least one data
octet. If the sending user also indicates a push, timely delivery of
the urgent information to the destination process is enhanced