North American Network Operators Group

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Re: shim6 @ NANOG (forwarded note from John Payne)

  • From: Stephen Sprunk
  • Date: Fri Mar 03 11:06:20 2006

Thus spake "Iljitsch van Beijnum" <[email protected]>
On 3-mrt-2006, at 0:22, Mark Newton wrote:
Right now we can hand them out to anyone who demonstrates a need
for them.  When they run out we'll need to be able to reallocate
address blocks which have already been handed out from orgs who
perhaps don't need them as much as they thought they did to orgs
which need them more.

Sounds like a marketplace to me.  How much do you think a /24 is
worth?  How many microseconds do you think it'll take for members
of each RIR to debate the policy changes needed to alter their
rules to permit trading of IPv4 resource allocations once IANA
says, "No!" for the first time?
This is what I wrote about this a couple of months ago: http://

An interesting aspect about address trading is that some organizations have huge amounts of address space which didn't cost them anything, or at least not significantly more than what smaller blocks of address space cost others. Having them pocket the proceeds strikes me as rather unfair, and also counter productive because it encourages hoarding. Maybe a system where ARIN and other RIRs buy back addresses for a price per bit prefix length rather than per address makes sense.
Keep in mind that current RIR allocations/assignments are effectively leases (though the RIRs deny that fact) and, like any landlord, they can refuse to renew a lease or increase the rent at any point.

There might be some interesting political battles when it comes to legacy allocations which are currently rent-free, but those tenants will find themselves woefully outnumbered when that day comes.

We'll also have a reasonably good idea of what it'd cost to perform an IPv6 migration as we gather feedback from orgs who have
actually done it.
I don't think the cost is too relevant (and hard to calculate because a lot of it is training and other not easily quantified expenditures), what counts is what it buys you. I ran a web bug for a non-networking related page in Dutch for a while and some 0.16% of all requests were done over IPv6. (That's 1 in 666.) So even if it's free, deploying IPv6 today isn't all that useful. But when you're the last one running IPv4, you'll really want to move over to IPv6, even if it's very expensive.
Ah, but why? As long as IPv4 has similar or better performance characteristics to IPv6, why would anyone _need_ to migrate? Add to that the near certainty that vendors will create NAT devices that will allow an entire v4 enterprise to reach the v6 Internet...


Stephen Sprunk "Stupid people surround themselves with smart
CCIE #3723 people. Smart people surround themselves with
K5SSS smart people who disagree with them." --Aaron Sorkin