Removing IPv6 Requirement for Receiving Space from the Final /8

Summary of Proposal

In order to receive an allocation from the final /8, LIRs are currently required to have received an IPv6 allocation. This proposal aims to remove the requirement. All other requirements for receiving an allocation from the final /8 remain in place.

Policy Text

[The following text will update section 5.1 in the RIPE Document, “IPv4 Address Allocation and Assignment Policies for the RIPE NCC Service Region”, if the proposal reaches consensus.]

a. Policy text to remove

5.1 Allocations made by the RIPE NCC to LIRs

[...]

Allocations will only be made to LIRs if they have already received an IPv6 allocation from an upstream LIR or the RIPE NCC.

Rationale

a. Arguments supporting the proposal

In order to receive an allocation from the final /8, LIRs are currently required to have received an IPv6 allocation. This requirement was originally meant to foster IPv6 deployment. However, in some cases it does the reverse. If LIRs have an existing IPv6 PI assignment but no IPv6 PA allocation, they do not meet this criterion. In order to qualify, they need to request an IPv6 allocation and subsequently return their existing PI assignment (per ripe-589 section 7.1).

Since there is a huge difference between having received an IPv6 allocation and actually deploying IPv6, there is doubt that the requirement has in fact lead to wider IPv6 adoption.

Previous versions of this proposal relaxed the requirement in order to deal with the above example. However, consensus on the exact wording could not be reached.

b. Arguments opposing the proposal

Relaxing the requirements for receiving IPv4 space may lead to a slightly faster run-out rate of IPv4. The authors do not expect this change to have a significant impact, because LIRs are still only entitled to a single /22 from the remaining address pool.

The IPv6 requirement can be seen as a way for the RIPE community to encourage IPv6 deployment. Without this requirement, it could be argued that the community is not doing everything in its power to speed up the transition to the new protocol. However, the RIPE allocation and assignment policies exist to define procedures for handing out address space. They are not meant to be vehicles for political statements.

 


Impact Analysis

Note: In order to provide additional information related to the proposal, details of an impact analysis carried out by the RIPE NCC are documented below. The projections presented in this analysis are based on existing data and should be viewed only as an indication of the possible impact that the proposal might have if it is accepted and implemented.

A. The RIPE NCC's Understanding of the Proposed Policy

It is the RIPE NCC's understanding that this proposal will permit a Local Internet Registry (LIR) to receive its final /22 IPv4 allocation from the RIPE NCC without the need to have an IPv6 allocation from the RIPE NCC or from an upstream LIR. The LIR must still meet all other requirements described in the policy for allocating and assigning IPv4 space in the RIPE NCC service region.

B. Impact of Policy on Registry and Addressing System

Address/Internet Number Resource Consumption

The number of new IPv6 allocations is a likely to decrease if the proposal is accepted, as new members that are only interested in receiving /22 IPv4 allocations opt not to receive an IPv6 allocation. With around 1,000 members joining the RIPE NCC in 2014, this could be represented graphically as a significant drop-off in IPv6 allocations, for example in this graph.

An increase in the IPv4 consumption is possible, as some organisations might not have requested their IPv4 allocation due to the IPv6 requirement, however the RIPE NCC has no historic date to estimate the actual increase.

Fragmentation/Aggregation

After analysing the data that is currently available, the RIPE NCC does not anticipate that any significant impact will be caused if this proposal is implemented.

C. Impact of Policy on RIPE NCC Operations/Services

Registration Services

If this proposed policy is accepted, a decrease in IPv6 allocation requests is expected. In regards to the workload of the RIPE NCC’s Registration Services, no significant impact is anticipated.

Outreach

This proposal removes the requirement that a network already has an IPv6 allocation before it can receive a final /22 IPv4 allocation from the RIPE NCC’s address pool. The RIPE NCC would like to highlight the risk that removing this requirement could be seen by stakeholders in the Internet community as the RIPE community (or the RIPE NCC) withdrawing its support for IPv6. This might be more of a concern with non-technical communities that are typically less engaged with the Regional Internet Registry (RIR) system, but who are nevertheless important stakeholder groups (e.g. governments).
 
As a result, the RIPE NCC may need to increase its communications and outreach efforts to counter the mistaken perception that community support for IPv6 has ended. It is difficult to accurately forecast the impact this would have on the RIPE NCC’s communications strategy or resources, as it depends on the response from various stakeholder groups.

This is expected to be a low-to-medium impact, depending on the response from stakeholder groups.

Billing/Finance Department

After analysing the data that is currently available, the RIPE NCC does not anticipate that any significant impact will be caused if this proposal is implemented

RIPE Database

After analysing the data that is currently available, the RIPE NCC does not anticipate that any significant impact will be caused if this proposal is implemented.

D. RIPE NCC Executive Board

The Board notes that increased outreach effort and associated increased budget may be necessary to counter the (mistaken) impression that the RIPE community no longer cares about IPv6 rollout.

E. Legal Impact of Policy

After analysing the data that is currently available, the RIPE NCC does not anticipate that any significant impact will be caused if this proposal is implemented.

F. Implementation

The RIPE NCC estimates that if this proposal is accepted the implementation would have a low impact.

Existing processes, supporting software and documentation would need to be updated to remove the IPv6 requirement for receiving the IPv4 allocation from the RIPE NCC.