A response to your comments
The Internet Architecture Board
Thu Jan 26 01:14:26 CET 1995
All - the IAB thanks you for your comments on our draft. We have discussed your concerns, and are actively re-drafting the document now. Once that has been completed, we would appreciate your further comments, should there be any. We wanted to take this opportunity to respond to some of the specific points that were raised (paraphrased). 1) "Were there substantiated rumours of denial of address allocations for legitimate requests?" We had heard rumours. However, these rumours were unsubstantiated. Since there were rumours which might be undermining the credibility of certain registries, the statement is meant to clarify that the registries do allocate unique addresses to organisations which request unique addresses according to the current guidelines specified in RFC 1466. 2) "What is the intent of this statement by the IAB?" Daniel stated it very succinctly: "The existence of private address space (RFC1597) shall not prevent any enterprise to obtain public address space according to the allocation criteria (currently RFC1466) if they wish to." We were not attempting to alter the operation or applicability of RFC1466. 3) "RFC1466 is unrealistic. What is being done about it?" We believe that action is being taken to revise 1466 via the same channels through which it was originally drafted - a new draft will be circulated via the Engineering and Planning Groups, and then into the IETF via the CIDRD working group. We depend on your assistance to those drafting that revision. We share your sentiment that the IPv4 address space is a scarce resource that must be conserved. We appreciate your endeavours along those lines. However we also stress that universal connectivity is also an important aim, and that anything which tends to detract from that needs careful examination. We understand that those two viewpoints are to some extent contradictory, and that a careful balancing act is needed to achieve both results to the fullest extent possible. We do not claim this is easy. In particular, with respect to RFC1597, another RFC that we believe needs some revision to clarify its applicability, we understand the potential uses of the mechanisms it proposes, however believe that we must take much care before encouraging or mandating its use. It is a reasonable thing for registries to bring the existence of RFC1597 to the attention of applicants for large amounts of IPv4 address space; however, careful wording is needed for any such notification. In particular, pronouncements should avoid implying that a requester may not receive a unique address allocation. It may be indicated that RFC1597 allocates lots of address space that can be used without constraints, whereas unique addresses will only be allocated to serve the real documented needs of the organisation. Also, the drawbacks of 1597 addresses should be made very plain and perhaps a pointer to RFC1627 given as well. The registries should take care to offer this as information, not advice, and leave the choice to the applicant. 4) "Does the IAB feel that RFC 1466 should be revised?" Yes. RFC 1466 is referenced since it is the only published criteria by which requests should be judged. 5) "Is the intent of the IAB to disallow registries from obtaining additional information?" No. 6) "Is it the intent of the IAB to disallow registries from recovering reasonable costs?" No. However, registries tend to have a de facto monopoly in their region so we feel strongly that any charges should be as low as possible. In the ideal world we would prefer users to have a choice of registries. 7) "Can the IAB express their views on the impact of the policies defined in the draft statement on the aggregation of address space into provider-based address blocks or does the IAB feel such aggregation is not a significant concern due to the impending implementation of IPv6?" We appreciated that address aggregation effectiveness may be reduced if addresses are not always allocated by a site's current provider. However, this decrease in effectiveness will be most noticeable in more local scopes, and decrease as the distance from the site increases. For instance, a site obtaining a number from any of several registries in Australia might be unable to aggregate routes at its provider's interface to the rest of the Internet, but the aggregation could possibly happen as the route leaves Australia, if not before. CIDR aggregation need not be perfect to be effective. How any of this will apply to IPv6 is yet to be seen. 8) "Are you stating that it is acceptable for registries to decline to allocate space if an organisation does not implement VLSMs?" This is something that should be discussed in the revision of RFC1466. One opinion may be that this may depend on the amount of address space the organisation requires, and how much difference the implementation of VLSM's would make to that requirement. It may be that the correct response is to allocate the amount of address space that would be reasonable if VLSM's were in use, and then allow the organisation to decide whether to do the work necessary to make VLSM's possible, or live with partial global connectivity. If we have failed to answer a question that has been posed concerning the draft, please feel free to resend your question. Once again, thanks for your input. kre, for the IAB.
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