[arin-ppml] "Millions of Internet Addresses Are Lying Idle"(slashdot)

David Farmer farmer at umn.edu
Tue Oct 21 16:35:30 EDT 2008

On 21 Oct 2008 Jo Rhett wrote:

> On Oct 20, 2008, at 5:02 PM, Stephen Sprunk wrote:
> > I think it's still worth the effort, not because it will delay the  
> > need to migrate to IPv6, but because ARIN's position becomes a lot  
> > more defensible come Exhaustion Day.  If there are hundreds of  
> > millions of addresses still out there, idle or even abandoned,  
> > that's a guaranteed PR black eye and possibly a legal problem.  If  
> > ARIN, in the meantime, has done its due diligence in reclaiming what  
> > can be reclaimed and all addresses are actually in use, it's a lot  
> > harder for folks to criticize us -- or for other regulators to step  
> > in and take over.
> Bingo.  Very well said.

I must agree that ARIN must be able to demonstrate due diligence in 
reclaiming what can reasonably be reclaimed.  If not, why would anyone 
take ARIN seriously when we says the transition to IPv6 is the only way 
forward in the long run.  That said, we need to be very clear in pointing out 
this is only the most temporary reprieve and is only being done to show 
good faith in ARIN's stewardship role for IPv4.

At the very least all the low hanging fruit needs to be reclaimed (and all the 
dried up prunes and raisins need to be swept up off the floor too, to extend 
the metaphor.)    An important balance needs to be struck here, enough 
effort to show good faith in reclaiming the obvious stuff, without making futile 
heroic efforts that in the end will only divert us from the transition to IPV6. 

And unfortunately, I believe this means dealing with the questions of Legacy 
Resource holders.  I believe that we need to make it clear to Legacy 
Holders, that any resources that are not in use must be reclaimed one way 
or another.  But again there is a balance needed here too.  How much effort 
as a community do we want Legacy holders to put in to reclamation vs. 
transitioning to IPv6?

I'm trying to figure out how to find this balance within my own organization.  
Trust me, this is not a trivial thing to do for an organization that has been 
using Internet number resources for more than 20 years.

Actually, I think what is requested in 10a of the LRSA is actually very 
reasonable.  Basically it requests that Legacy holders, "voluntarily return to 
ARIN the portion of all Included Number Resources that it is unlikely to need 
over the next 10 years."  It also might be a reasonable to expect in 
exchange for retaining these resources that Legacy holders help lead the 
way in the transition to IPv6.  Placing an expectation that to retain the 
benefits of early adoption of IPv4 that there is an expectation of early 
adoption of IPv6 could also be reasonable and beneficial to the community 
as a whole.

We need to be a community of  creative and critical thinkers right now.  We 
must examine all of our orthodoxies.  We must reinforce the orthodoxy that 
is still valid and dispose of those that are not in this time of change.

David Farmer				     Email:	farmer at umn.edu
Office of Information Technology
Networking & Telecomunication Services
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