[ppml] IPv6>>32

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Thu May 12 17:40:25 EDT 2005

> Joe User may know, but Joe User doesn't really care that much. With
> a few exceptions Joe User simply picks from the options available.
There is some truth in this statement, but, if other options were made
available (static addressing and whole networks for similar pricing),
Joe user would, indeed, probably choose them in many cases, and,
competition might well force the others to abandon such surcharges.

> I also don't think that it's a perceived scarcity of addresses - I
> think Joe User sees that it's because the consumer ISPs don't want
> servers running on consumer accounts because they can charge more for
> accounts that do allow servers. Dynamically assigning addresses to
> always-on connections (and to a lesser extent creative port blocking)
> are primarily for product differentiation, and I think that's pretty
> well understood by Joe User. I've not even heard an ISP claim that
> dynamic assignments are due to scarcity of addresses since the
> days of pay-per-minute dialup.
When I called it a perceived scarcity, I was talking about the perception
of the competitors, not the perception of the end user.  I am sorry I did
not make that clear at first.

However, I think that many Joe Users are aware that the "servers are
from clients" mentality is a myth.  IP is a peer to peer network, and, any
machine can be server and client at any time.  ISPs don't claim that
dynamic assignments are due to scarcity of addresses, but, the do tell
end users that more than one address costs more because they pay more
for more addresses (technically true on some levels, but...).  This
amounts to the same thing.  Also, the amount of additional justification
required for anything larger than a /28 places a significant cost on the
ISP for issuing a larger block, and, even at the /28 level, there's more
accounting required than for a single IP.  With IPv6, that is no longer
the case.  It's one of the very few advantages IPv6 offers right now.

> I suspect that if there is any choice of IPv6 service available at all
> the one Joe User demands will be driven more by what Linksys and
> Netgear support well, rather than by any of Joes beliefs about
> how it should be, and that may make Leo's optimistic thoughts about
> autoconfiguration more realistic. Then again, Linksys and friends
> are sneaky and may well be able to provide a very simple, happy
> end-user experience without having 2^64 bits to play with. And
> that's all Joe User really cares about.
There aren't 2^64 bits to play with in the entire IPv6 address space.
However, I suspect that Linksys and friends will implement NATv6 if there
is a market for it, but, if ISPs are giving end users /64 or /48
assignments, they'll happily implement that.  In the long run, the
end user with multiple networks will become the norm and not the
exception.  In the short run, I'm sure all kinds of people with an interest
in it will attempt to preserve the status quo, and, I'm sure the vendors
will deliver solutions to meet whatever need is defined by the market
whether it matches the status quo or whether it evolves.


If it wasn't crypto-signed, it probably didn't come from me.
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