Celebrating 25 Years of RIPE

In 1989, the very first RIPE Meeting was held in Amsterdam, marking the beginning of the Internet in our region as we know it today. Fourteen people attended RIPE 1 on 22 May 1989 with the aim of coordinating IP networks in Europe. Since then, the RIPE community has grown to encompass a vast number of people from all over the world who share an interest in the development of the Internet.

To commemorate a quarter of a century of RIPE, there is a project to document the achievements and landmarks of RIPE, recognise those people who have helped with its development and build a gallery of RIPE-related images from the past 25 years.

All members of the RIPE community are invited to contribute to this project, which will culminate in a special week of celebrations at the RIPE 68 Meeting in Warsaw from 12-16 May 2014.

If you have pictures to share or have ideas on what events from the past 25 years should be documented, please let us know via the web form on the RIPE 68 pages.

We'll also be sharing some fond memories of the past 25 years via Twitter using #RIPE25years. We hope you'll also tweet your memories, photos and anecdotes so we can reminisce together. 

25 Years of RIPE Timeline

This timeline shows important events that have taken place over the 25 years of RIPE. You can view each year's events by by clicking the year on the timeline.

Thanks to all those in the RIPE community who contributed to this timeline.
Click on the images to enlarge them.

Expand all
1989
RIPE 1Berlin Wall 1989World Wide Web is invented by Tim Berners Lee
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
    • The very first RIPE Meeting is held in Amsterdam, in May, and attended by 14 people

    • Rob Blokzijl is appointed RIPE Chair

    • RIPE 2: November, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

      Four Task Forces formed:

      • Task Force 1: Connectivity and Routing (Coordinator Thomas Lenggenhager, SWITCH)

      • Task Force 2: Network Management and Operations (Coordinator Daniel Karrenberg, EUnet)

      • Task Force 3: Domain Name System (Coordinator Francis Dupont, INRIA)

      • Task Force 4: Formal Coordination (Coordinator Rob Blokzijl, NIKHEF)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • World Wide Web is invented by Tim Berners Lee

  • Peter Deutsch of McGill University develops Archie, an archive of FTP sites, the first effort to index the Internet

  • The Simpsons premieres on US TV

  • Communism falls throughout Central and Eastern Europe

1990
The Hubble Space Telescope is launched
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 3: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 4: March, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 5: June, Geneva, Switzerland

  • RIPE 6: August, Zurich, Switzerland

    • Task Force 5 formed: Performance and statistics. (Coordinator Bernhard Stockman)

  • RIPE 7: November, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Commodore releases the Amiga 3000, the first 32-bit Amiga

  • The ARPANET is decommissioned

  • East and West Germany reunite

  • The Hubble Space Telescope is launched

1991
The Linux kernel is publicly announced on 25 August by the 21-year-old Finnish student Linus Benedict TorvaldsEuropean Connectivity Map
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 8: February, Amsterdam the Netherlands

    • Task Forces became Working Groups

    • Following Working Groups were formed: Network Management and Operations, IP over X.25, Network Monitoring and Statistics Gathering, DNS, RIPE Whois (later called RIPE Database Working Group)

    • First RIPE Database format defined in ripe-013

  • RIPE 9: June, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

    • Connectivity and Routing Task Force becomes Network Mapping Working Group

  • RIPE 10: September, Geneva, Switzerland

    • New Working Groups formed: Routing, DNS, Eastern and Central Europe Connectivity (later called Connectivity Working Group)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • First web servers outside CERN are created; on 6 August, Tim Berners-Lee announces the World Wide Web project on a Usenet newsgroup

  • Linus Torvalds creates a new operating system kernel he calls Linux, based on the Minix code; he announces it on 25 August to a Usenet newsgroup

  • Gopher, the first user-friendly internet interface, is created at the University of Minnesota

  • Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia declare independence

  • The Linux kernel is publicly announced on 25 August by the 21-year-old Finnish student Linus Benedict Torvalds

1992
Bush and Yeltsin proclaim a formal end to the Cold War
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Lynx, a text-based Web browser, is made available to the public

  • IETF publishes RFC 1366 (Guidelines for Management of IP Address Space)

  • Bush and Yeltsin proclaim a formal end to the Cold War

1993
Maastricht Treaty takes effect, creating the European UnionMosaic web browser is released
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 14: January, Prague, Czech Republic

    • First mention of Local IR Working Group

  • RIPE 15: April, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 16: September, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • Classless Inter-Domain Routing (CIDR)

Other Important events/landmarks
  • InterNIC is established

  • Mosaic web browser is released

  • Dissolution of Czechoslovakia into Czech Republic and Slovakia

  • Maastricht Treaty takes effect, creating the European Union

1994
Nelson Mandela is elected President of South AfricaRIPE 18: May, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 19: September, Lisbon, Portugal
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
Other Important events/landmarks
  • Tim Berners-Lee establishes the W3C in October

  • Nelson Mandela is elected President of South Africa

  • White House launches web page

1995
RIPE 20: January, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 22: October, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 20: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

    • New Working Group formed: IPv6

    • First LIR Training Course held in Amsterdam

  • RIPE 21: May, Rome, Italy

  • RIPE 22: October, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • IPv6 is proposed for the first time

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • The SSL protocol is introduced by Netscape

  • The Opera browser is released on 1 April

1996
Dolly, the world’s first cloned sheep, is born in JulyRIPE 23: January, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 24: April, Berlin, GermanyRIPE 25: September, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 23: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 24: April, Berlin, Germany

  • RIPE 25: September, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Macromedia Flash is introduced

  • More email than postal mail is sent in the United States

  • Dolly, the world’s first cloned sheep, is born in July

1997
Digital Versatile Discs (DVDs) first go on saleRIPE 26: January, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 27: May, Dublin, IrelandRIPE 28: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 26: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 27: May, Dublin, Ireland

  • RIPE 28: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE NCC is incorporated as a legal entity

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • IEEE releases 802.11 (WiFi) standard

  • Digital Versatile Discs (DVDs) first go on sale

1998
The first Euro coins are minted in FranceJon Postel, influential computer scientist and administrator of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), diesRIPE 30: May, Stockholm, SwedenRIPE 30: May, Stockholm, Sweden
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 29: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 30: May, Stockholm, Sweden

  • RIPE 31: September, Edinburgh, Scotland

  • ICANN is established in California as a not-for-profit organisation to oversee various Internet-related administrative tasks, including the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • The first Euro coins are minted in France

  • Google is incorporated in Menlo Park, California by founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin

  • Jon Postel, influential computer scientist and administrator of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), dies

1999
Canadian company Research In Motion Limited (RIM) releases the first Blackberry devicePeer-to-peer music sharing service Napster is releasedRIPE 32: January, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 33: May, Vienna, Austria
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 32: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 33: May, Vienna, Austria

  • RIPE 34: September, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • The RIPE NCC makes its first allocations of IPv6 address space

  • The RIRs sign a Memorandum of Understanding with ICANN on the role of the Address Supporting Organization (ASO). The first three RIPE community members to sit on the ASO are Hans Petter Holen, Wilfried Woeber and Sabine Jaume.

  • "Provisional IPv6 Assignment And Allocation Policy Document" published

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Peer-to-peer music sharing service Napster is released

  • Canadian company Research In Motion Limited (RIM) releases the first Blackberry device

2000
The first African Network Operators Group (AfNOG) Meeting takes place in Cape Town. At this meeting it is decided to host AfriNIC at the RIPE NCC to get it started.The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) holds its first meeting in the southern hemisphere in Adelaide, AustraliaRIPE 36: May, Budapest, Hungary
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 35: February, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 36: May, Budapest, Hungary

  • RIPE 37: September, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • The first African Network Operators Group (AfNOG) Meeting takes place in Cape Town. At this meeting it is decided to host AfriNIC at the RIPE NCC to get it started.

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • The Internet grows to more than 100 million hosts

  • The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) holds its first meeting in the southern hemisphere in Adelaide, Australia

  • The Millennium Bug, or Y2K, fails to bring about the end of civilisation

2001
Apple releases the first iPodLACNIC, the fourth Regional Internet Registry, is officially established in Montevideo, UruguayThe first AfriNIC Board of Trustees is established, chaired by Dr Nii Quaynor.RIPE 40: October, Prague, Czech Republic
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 38: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 39: May, Bologna, Italy

  • RIPE 40: October, Prague, Czech Republic

  • The first AfriNIC Board of Trustees is established, chaired by Dr Nii Quaynor.

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • LACNIC, the fourth Regional Internet Registry, is officially established in Montevideo, Uruguay

  • ICANN launches the first "new" generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs) since 1988, including .aero, .biz, .coop, .info, .museum, .name, and .pro

  • The first public version of the peer-to-peer protocol BitTorrent is released by its inventor, Bram Cohen

  • Apple releases the first iPod

2002
RIPE 42: April, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 41: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 42: April, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 43: September, Rhodes, Greece

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • An attack, lasting for approximately one hour, is targeted at all 13 DNS root name servers

  • The Euro replaces the currencies of 12 states in the European Union

2003
In October, the four existing RIRs sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), forming the Number Resource Organization (NRO)The Pirate Bay, a torrent file host, is founded in Sweden
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 44: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands; this is the first time the meeting is webcast to the community

  • RIPE 45: May, Barcelona, Spain

  • RIPE 46: September, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • The first RIPE NCC Regional Meeting is held in Dubai in December

  • In October, the four existing RIRs sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), forming the Number Resource Organization (NRO)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Phase I of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), the first of a pair of United Nations-sponsored conferences about information and communication takes place in Geneva

  • Two new social networking websites are launched, MySpace and LinkedIn, the latter aimed at professionals looking to network online

  • Skype, a voice-over-IP (VOIP) service and instant messaging client, was released

  • The Pirate Bay, a torrent file host, is founded in Sweden

2004
AfriNIC is provisionally recognised by ICANN and becomes a provisional member of the NROThe NASA rovers Opportunity and Spirit land safely on Mars and begin mankind's first-ever field geological study of another planet  2005
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 47: January, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 48: May, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 49: September, Manchester, United Kingdom

  • RIPE NCC Regional Meeting, Moscow

  • RIPE NCC Regional Meeting, Nairobi

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • AfriNIC is provisionally recognised by ICANN and becomes a provisional member of the NRO

  • The Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG), a United Nations multi-stakeholder Working Group, is established

  • In February, students at Harvard University launch Facebook

  • The first podcast is released

  • Ludicorp launch Flickr

  • The European Union (EU) sees enlargement as Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Cyprus and Malta officially join on 1 May

  • The NASA rovers Opportunity and Spirit land safely on Mars and begin mankind's first-ever field geological study of another planet

2005
YouTube, a video-sharing website, is founded by former PayPal employees
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 50: May, Stockholm, Sweden

  • RIPE 51: October, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE NCC Regional Meeting, September, Moscow

  • The first RIPE NCC Roundtable Meeting takes place in March

  • The Policy Development Process (PDP) is formalised in September

  • In December, the RIPE NCC ends all memberships from the African continent, given the official status granted to AfriNIC as an RIR for the continent

  • Policy Development Process developed by RIPE community

  • Policy on "Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) Policy for Allocation of IPv6 Blocks to Regional Internet Registries" (2005-09)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • The second phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) takes place in Tunis

  • YouTube, a video-sharing website, is founded by former PayPal employees

  • Google Earth, a virtual globe, is released

2006
RIPE 53: October, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsTwitter, an online social networking and microblogging platform, is launched
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 52: April, Istanbul, Turkey

  • RIPE 53: October, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE NCC Regional Meeting, January, Qatar

  • RIPE NCC Regional Meeting, September, Moscow

  • RIPE NCC Regional Meeting, November, Bahrain

  • The RIPE Certification Task Force and RIPE Database Privacy Task Force is formed at the RIPE 53 Meeting in Amsterdam

  • Policy on "First Raise in IPv4 Assignment Window Size" (2006-07)

  • Policy on "Provider Independent (PI) IPv6 Assignments for End User Organisations" (2006-01)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • The first Internet Governance Forum (IGF) is held in October

  • Twitter, an online social networking and microblogging platform, is launched

2007
First meeting of the Middle East Network Operators Group (MENOG) takes place in Bahrain in AprilRIPE 55: October, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 54: May, Talinn, Estonia

  • RIPE 55: October, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE Task Force on Enhanced Cooperation is started at RIPE 54

  • DNSSEC Key Repository Task Force is established at RIPE 54

  • First meeting of the Middle East Network Operators Group (MENOG) takes place in Bahrain in April

  • Policy about "Direct Internet Resource Assignments to End Users from the RIPE NCC" (2007-01)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Number of Internet hosts exceeds 5 million

  • World of Warcraft passes 9 million users

2008
RIPE 56: May, Berlin, GermanyRIPE 57: October, Dubai, UAE
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 56: May, Berlin, Germany

  • RIPE 57: October, Dubai, UAE

  • Global Policy for the Allocation of the Remaining IPv4 Address Space is accepted by the RIPE community

  • RIPE Cooperation Working Group is formed

  • RIPE Anti-Abuse Working Group is formed

  • "Global Policy for the Allocation of the Remaining IPv4 Address Space" (2008-03)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Pakistani ISP misconfigures its router and brings down YouTube for the entire world

2009
RIPE 58: May, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 58: May, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 59: October, Lisbon, Portugal
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 58: May, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 59: October, Lisbon, Portugal

  • "Run Out Fairly" policy (2009-03)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Conficker worm spreads to millions of PCs

2010
The Arab Spring, which brings about sweeping political changes throughout the Arab World, begins in TunisiaRob Blokzijl receives royal recognition in the Netherlands for his work as founding member and Chair of RIPERIPE 60: May, Prague, Czech RepublicRIPE 61: November, Rome, Italy
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 60: May, Prague, Czech Republic

  • RIPE 61: November, Rome, Italy

  • Policy on "Allocations from the last /8" (2010-02)

  • MAT Working Group is established

  • Rob Blokzijl receives royal recognition in the Netherlands for his work as founding member and Chair of RIPE

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • The Arab Spring, which brings about sweeping political changes throughout the Arab World, begins in Tunisia

  • China passes 450 million Internet users

2011
RIPE 62: May, Amsterdam, the NetherlandsRIPE 63: November, Vienna, AustriaThe royal wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William takes place at Westminster Abbey in London
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 62: May, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • RIPE 63: November, Vienna, Austria

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • The royal wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William takes place at Westminster Abbey in London

2012
The discovery of the Higgs boson is announced, nearly 50 years after scientists first theorised its existence, adding further weight to the Standard Model of particle physicsRIPE NCC starts allocating from last /8
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 64: April, Ljubljana, Slovenia

  • RIPE 65: September, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

  • The RIPE NCC celebrates its 20th anniversary

  • "RIPE NCC Services to Legacy Internet Resource Holders" (2012-07)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • ICANN starts to accept applications for new generic top-level domain names

  • The discovery of the Higgs boson is announced, nearly 50 years after scientists first theorised its existence, adding further weight to the Standard Model of particle physics

  • RIPE NCC starts allocating from last /8

2013
Former CIA employee Edward Snowden leaks classified NSA documents exposing global surveillance programs carried out by the US and other governmentsRIPE 66 takes place in Dublin, Ireland, in May, with a record number of 523 attendeesRIPE 67: October, Athens, Greece
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 66 takes place in Dublin, Ireland, in May, with a record number of 523 attendees

  • RIPE 67: October, Athens, Greece

  • At the RIPE 67 Meeting in Athens, RIPE Chair Rob Blokzijl announces that, after 25 years of leading the RIPE community, he will step down after the RIPE 68 Meeting in 2014

  • The EIX Working Group is dissolved after successfully completing its mission and a new Connection BoF is proposed in its place

  • New Working Group formed: Open Source

  • "Post Depletion Adjustment of Procedures to Match Policy Objectives, and Clean-up of Obsolete Policy Text" (2013-03)

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Former CIA employee Edward Snowden leaks classified NSA documents exposing global surveillance programs carried out by the US and other governments

2014
Important Events/Landmarks in RIPE
  • RIPE 68: May, Warsaw, Poland

  • RIPE 69: October, London, United Kingdom

Other Important Events/Landmarks
  • Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance is scheduled to take place in Brazil in April