The 2012 KDIGO Guideline for CKD evaluation, classification, and management has updated the original 2002 KDOQI Guidelines, using newer data and addressing issues raised over the last decade concerning definitions and assessment. This review highlights the key aspects of the CKD guideline, and describes the rationale for specific wording and the scope of the document. A précis of key concepts in each of the five sections of the guideline is presented. The guideline document is intended for general practitioners and nephrologists, and covers CKD evaluation, classification, and management for both adults and children. Throughout the guideline, we have attempted to overtly address areas of controversy or non-consensus, international relevance, and impact on practice and public policy.