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Re: Internic address allocation policy

  • From: Matthew Kaufman
  • Date: Mon Nov 18 22:18:56 1996

Original message <[email protected]>
From: Michael Dillon <[email protected]>
Date: Nov 18, 18:25
Subject: Re: Internic address allocation policy
> On Mon, 18 Nov 1996, Matthew Kaufman wrote:
> > 
> > I'm having a problem getting the Internic to allocate additional IP
> > addresses to us. I'm looking for feedback (public or private) from others
> > who may have had this problem that I can forward to my lawyers.
> Lawyers will only cost you money, slow you down and accomplish nothing in
> the end.
> > Now I guess they believe that, and they've fallen back on the argument
> > that I don't allocate addresses as well as they'd like. This is based on
> > looking at our rwhois data. Now, we have large numbers of customers with
> > small static blocks who don't really want their name and address listed
> > publically... and so we've listed those blocks as things like 
> > w.x.y.z/24 -> "workgroup ISDN accounts in San Jose". But that apparently
> > doesn't satisfy whoever plays [email protected] In fact, upon reviewing
> > our customer policy about disclosure of customer information, we've had
> > to turn off our rwhois server entirely until we can go through and seriously
> > sanitize it.
> Sounds like your company is suffering from a serious lack of knowledge
> about IP allocation procedures and policies. The only solution to this is 
> to educate yourself, get your internal procedures and policies in order,
> and integrate your knowledge of IP allocation procedures into your
> planning processes.

 We have been doing this since 1992, and have significant knowledge of
IP allocation proceedures and policies. We were around when class B addresses
were still being handed out,... we were around when CIDR was first deployed,
and we've adjusted our internal policies regarding allocation as the
standards have changed. For instance, it was once standard to issue a full
class C subnet to almost any "corporate" client, and most routers didn't
understand VLSM anyway. Now that's changed, and our policies have changed
to match. In order to keep table size down, in the very early days we got
a class B network and issued subnets of that to some of our clients, which
even today saves a significant number of announcements that pre-CIDR couldn't
have been reduced any other way. We also used to accept and advertise routes
for customers who had their own PI class C space, but now we almost always
require renumbering to inside one of our CIDR blocks,... something which
has increased the rate at which those blocks are taken up.

 We were around when SWIP became available, and were one of the early victims
of the "SWIP deletes IN-ADDR records" bug. And when rwhois became an option,
one of our techs set up an rwhois server, and we switched to that for 
reporting our distribution of networks downstream.

 The reason for CIDR is to reduce table size. The reason for tight subnetting
is to reduce IP address space waste until more addresses become available
(class A subnetting, and then IPv6). We use both. 

> > All I want is some addresses so that I can continue to hook up customers,
> > allocate additional addresses to providers downstream of us who need more
> > addresses for *their* customers, and build a backbone network. But I've 
> > been forced into getting our lawyers involved. 
> It's your own ignorance that created your problem and its your own
> ignorance that is leading you to lawyers. 

 The Internic formerly responded to requests for addresses, backed up with
valid engineering requirements, with an address allocation. Now they do
everything possible to block the allocation of additional addresses, and
have gone so far as to request information which we are contractually
prohibited from releasing. Ask anyone who receives junk (snail)mail from their
domain name records why a provider should be able to keep its customer contact
information private. The Internic has changed the allocation model to
a 3-month term, which, unless large reservations are kept, will simply
increase table size as providers consume their small blocks.

> > Again, anybody who's figured out how to force the Internic to be
> > reasonable about address allocation, *please* drop me a note.
> For starters after reading your plans I can't see any reason why you
> couldn't afford to spend $10,000 or $20,000 to get the IP addresses you
> need. If you are willing to spend some money here's what to do.
> Telephone the IP allocation folks at the Internic and ask to meet with
> them in Virginia to explain what you need to do to get IP addresses and
> ensure smooth allocation of addresses in the future. Don't even mention
> the specifics of what has happened in the past and do *NOT* ask for
> addresses. Ask for a meeting. Tell them that a technical person and a
> management person (CEO) will be at the meeting. Once the date and time is
> arranged, fly to Virginia, sit down, listen, ask questions, take notes.

First you say I'm ignorant of how IP address allocation works, and now you're
telling me that the way it works is to fly me and the CEO to Virginia?!?
This is the INTERNET. I ought to be able to get this entire matter
resolved via email. Period.

> Be especially careful with the notetaking. For instance, if the Internic
> person says "You have to one, two, thre, blah blah" you should confirm it
> by saying "So if we one, two three, blah, blah that will meet this
> requirement?". Throughout this meeting be friendly. Do not bluster or
> threaten or yell or whine. 

 I've asked for specific requirements via email, and been told that only
one thing was blocking me, and then when that's resolved, found that now
there's 3 more things blocking it. That sort of nonsense is why lawyers
are getting involved. A simple inability to keep their own word via
email, and actions which are preventing us from doing business make them
perfect targets.

> What if they won't meet with you? Then ask them where you can find out
> this information. Where can you find a consultant to hire who knows.
> Your intent on the phone call should be to determine who has the knowledge
> to solve the problem (Internic person or consultant) and where you have to
> go to meet with this person.

I have a consultant who can help me when my own negotiations with the
Internic fail. He happens to be my lawyer, and has a very good track record
of getting the Internic to behave themselves. If I'm going to fly someone
out to take notes at a meeting, it'll be my lawyer, because then there
won't be any argument over what the stated requirements were.

> Be prepared to change your internal policies. Be prepared to thoroughly
> document what you are using IP addresses for. Be civil.

 Our internal policies have been and continue to dynamically adjust to the
current "state of the art" for address allocation. Our usage of IP addresses
has been extensively documented to the Internic via SWIP, rwhois, and detailed
statements on our applications for additional addresses. The ONLY thing we've
refused to document is the specific names and addresses of people who have
been allocated small subnets and who don't already have their contact 
information on file with the Internic.

 We've been civil. We've been frank. We've pointed out that a failure to
act will start to cost us real money. And we've been turned away every time.
As I said before, I can't believe that this process has gotten to the
point where lawyers have to get involved, but it has, and that's that.

-matthew kaufman
 [email protected]
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