[ppml] Newbie Questions

David Farmer farmer at umn.edu
Thu Mar 20 00:22:06 EDT 2008

On 19 Mar 2008 Jo Rhett wrote:

> The problem is *very* well known, and there ain't much we can do  
> about it other than try to contain it until we can afford to upgrade  
> all of our hardware to accept that many routes.  This problem isn't  
> new, and I would rather avoid listening to newbies rethink an old  
> problem (unless they are all willing to read 16+ years of arguement  
> about this on this and other mailing lists before posting)

As an admitted newbie to this discussion and the mailing list I have a few 

A little more background first however; I'm not a newbie to big networking 
and to big network problems.  I just haven't paid attention to addressing 
issues for a long time, especially IPv4.  The network I work for has 5 Legacy 
/16, and a few Legacy /24s from the dawn of time, our first /16 was assigned 
over 20 years ago, long before ARIN.  At one time we had other address 
space from some early providers, but we retruned most of that 9 or 10 years 
ago, providers were to much of a pain to deal with and it was not really 
justified for us to have more than our direct assignments anyway.  

In case your thinking "oh one of those Legacy address hogs".  Well maybe, 
but we have over 70,000 access ports of GigE, with a 20G MPLS Backbone, 
servicing over 175 on-net buildings, with over 22,000,000 assignable square 
feet of space in one campus served by 3 of those /16s.  We purchase over a 
total of 2Gb of transit on 4G of circuits and last year finished building our 
own 100Gb long-haul (1500 miles) optical transport network, it is shared 
with a few friends, and we are already planing the upgrade to the next 100G.   

Enough chest thumping;

So with IPv6 becoming real and maybe even actually deployable for real 
people other than just network engineers (hey you can get to Google with it 
again and they say it will stay up this time), IPv4 exhaustion coming (and I 
don't think we're crying wolf this time), with things like the Legacy RSA and 
2008-2 being kicked around, I thought it was time to start paying attention to 
ARIN, and more importantly so did my bosses.

Finally to my questions;

1. You guys are batting around PI and PA,  Provider Independent and 
Provider Aggregatable, the basic definitions I find in the RIPE FAQ and then 
the ancient RIPE-127.   Any better or more recent references? 

2.  I see nothing about PA in the ARIN policy documentation, and ever so 
little about PI.  If these are such important concepts to ARIN Policy why are 
they not defined better?  Or at least some references, even one 13 year old 
would help.  

3. If these are such fundamental concepts why do they seem to be so 
misunderstood by so many people?  <hum> Could it be that they are not 
properly defined in ARIN policy?

4. Other than "read 16+ years of argument ... on this and other mailing lists" 
(the bosses didn't give me that much time to spend on this), is there a 
newbie FAQ or suggested reading list?  I'm well versed in the Internet just 
haven't paid much attention to addressing policy. 

David Farmer				Email:	farmer at umn.edu
Office of Information Technology
University of Minnesota			Phone:	612-626-0815
2218 University Ave SE			Cell:	612-812-9952
Minneapolis, MN 55414-3029		FAX:	612-626-1818

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