[ppml] IPv4 wind-down

Geoff Huston gih at apnic.net
Wed Mar 21 18:03:50 EDT 2007

At 09:37 AM 22/03/2007, Martin Hannigan wrote:

> > Shortly we will be burning through 2+ /8's per month, so
> > the logistics of reclaiming space will be challenged to
> > keep up, even if there are blocks that add up to that
> > much.
>An above ground v4 trade would be helpful. Allowing V4 to be
>treated as property, at least for legacy space, would be
>required. The economics of that are interesting,

"interesting" in that "all markets are interesting" or "intersting in 
that "this market would be unique in a number of ways, only some of 
which are predictable"?

>  and the
>outcome predictable.

Again its not clear to me what you mean by 'predictable."  Yes, in 
effect a market for a good prices itself against the cost of 
alternatives, and a market in IPv4 may well perceivce NATs and IPv6 
as alternatives and prices within such an IPv4 market may well 
reflect the perceived cost (and benefit) of such alternatives. My 
question to you is whether this is what you mean by a predictable 
outcome, or are you hinting at some other view of the behaviour of 
such a market?

>  Seems like a smoother transition
>than tossing a bomb into the problem like the aforementioned
>policy seems
>to do, IMHO.

There is the view that its not the date of exhaustion that is the 
issue for industry - its the transition from the address distribution 
system we use today to what happens thereafter that is critical to 
industry stability here. The entire issue of demand levels of 
continued deployment of IPv4 and the likely levels of industry 
attention to alternatives look to be critical factors here when 
thinking about such transitions. Its an topic that appears to call 
for a broader (multi-disciplinary?) approach to understand the full 
extent of the industry dynamics here, and it certainly appears to be 
more than just the perspective of looking at this as a choice set  of 
technically feasible alternatives being presented to a relatively 
homogenous industry that is capable of making coordinated decisions.


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