[ppml] Address Space versus Routing Slots
gih at apnic.net
Thu May 4 22:15:06 EDT 2006
>The reason I asked the question is that it sometimes appears that
>folks assume the Internet will grind to a halt when the last v4 /8 is
>allocated so we must deploy IPv6 at all costs. I would be curious to
>see what people think. In particular (and in keeping with the
>charter of this mailing list), I would be interested in hearing what
>the public policy implications are of events of v4 free space
>depletion (at 11:11 GMT Dec 12, 2012 I assume :-)).
I had asked those questions at the RIPE open policy meeting last year,
and also at the ARIN meeting where there was a round table on this topic.
What appears to be obvious (well obvious to me at any rate) is that at
the time when an RIR can no longer meet allocation demands via
provision of unallocated address space (i.e. the RIR "runs out") then the
current policy framework also reaches its current end point.
Exhaustion of the IPv4 unallocated address pool does not imply complete
unavailability of IPv4 address resources to industry players. i.e. the
exhaustion of the unallocated IPv4 address pool does not appear to imply a
forced IPv6 conversion onto the industry at that point in time
There is reason to believe that the Internet industry will continue to use
IPv4 as a base protocol well after this IPv4 unallocated address pool
exhaustion date comes and goes. This raises a number of considerations,
a) market-related considerations
In the absence of the imposition of specific external control functions,
a conventional economic response would be the emergence of various forms
of trading markets in address resources. In conventional markets
scarcity tends to operate as a pricing premium factor. Market behaviours
would then imply an entirely different behaviour in terms of IPv4
address distribution functions. Release of current address holdings
based on conversion to address compression technologies could come into
play within a market-based pricing dynamic.
The policy questions such a market dynamic would appear to raise
include: What form of market regulation would be appropriate? How would
it be applied? Who would apply it? Why would it be useful to have?
From a "network integrity" perspective it may also be useful to
consider: How can we preserve address utility (the integrity of address
uniqueness) in an environment of market-based trading?
Is the emergence of such markets Good or Bad? Avoidable or Inevitable?
Appropriate or Inappropriate? Fair or Unfair? Are there any practical
alternatives for the industry? How would address trading markets be best
supported? Would such markets be regulated? How? What is the RIR role in
such an environment?
b) RIR policy considerations
In the area of RIR Allocation Policies, there are the policy-related
questions of: What is the threshold point where the application of
different IPv4 address allocation policies may be appropriate? Or is no
change a wiser course of action? Or should the RIRs establish
strategic reserve address pools? Why?
c) broader considerations
What about Equity, Affordability, Fairness of access to address
resources at a global level? And in what venue are such concerns best
expressed? And how would they be expressed within the overall model?
Overall I suspect that all these boil down to:
What are most appropriate address management policy measures that will
support the continued well-being of the global Internet and its users?
And when will they be needed?
The above are my personal opinions, of course.
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