[arin-ppml] Solving the squatting problem

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Thu May 16 14:51:58 EDT 2019

> On May 16, 2019, at 11:03 AM, Michel Py <michel at arneill-py.sacramento.ca.us> wrote:
> Hi Owen,
>>> Michel Py wrote :
>>> Typical use case : large org that has outgrown 10/8 and squats un-announced DoD prefix.
>>> They know it's dumb, but IPv6 does not cut it either. They pick the lesser of two evils.
>> Owen DeLong wrote :
>> I’d argue that IPv6 is the lesser of evils and fixing whatever broken
>> system they have that causes IPv6 to “not cut it” is the least evil.
>>> Regardless the technical difficulties, it would have been nice to have 240/4.
>> In order to make 240/4 work, we would have had to update the code on virtually every system on the internet and most of the applications.
> Not if it was for private use only. Only the organizations that would choose to use 240/4 would have to change. And these orgs have serious purchasing power, so if they decided to use 240/4, they would have a very good point telling their vendors to make their stuff work with it.
> If we had done that earlier, we would have a de-jure standard instead of a de-facto disgrace.

Well, sort of… We’d still have to have altered the code base for every system that was going to be able to use 240/4.

Let’s see what that entails…
	Any of those organizations have Linux boxes? — I bet the answer is yes… OK… Have to update the Linux Kernel…
	BSD? — Yep — OK, that too…
	Windows Phones?

How far down this list do I have to get before we’ve reached a reasonable approximation of “the codebase for every host on the internet"?

>> If we spend the same effort making 204/4 work instead of making IPv6 work, then when we
>> run out of 204/4 space (and we would), we are no better off than when we started. If,
>> instead, we spend that effort enabling IPv6, at the end we have a completed transition
>> with the ability to deprecate IPv4 and make everyone’s lives significantly better.
> The market has proven you wrong. We have a squatting problem.

I’m arguing that 204/4 wouldn’t have eliminated the squatting problem.

> Your solution : tell people to deploy IPv6 instead of squatting DoD space.

My solution: tell people to deploy IPv6 instead of continuing to prop up the mess that is IPv4 and continuing to further degrade the internet with more and more address sharing hacks. The DOD space squatting for private use is really, IMHO, one of the least of all of the problems IPv4 is causing in the world.

> It does not work, and as time passes, it will work even less.

How do you figure this? It’s working more and more every day… Every statistical measure shows IPv6 to be a growing fraction of internet traffic.

> For the first orgs who squatted DoD space, it was a bold move. They kept in under wraps as much as they could. But now, unfortunately, is has become OK to do because "everyone else does it, why not me”.

Frankly, so what?

> My solution : give the people what they want, legally.

That’s an interesting perspective on the subject, but I don’t really buy it.

> You're telling them to drink fruit juice, but they want booze. No matter what you say, they'll keep making moonshine.

Well, it’s more like I’m saying “Look, we’re out of petroleum and continuing to use it is destroying the planet. Perhaps solar, wind, hydro, or other renewables would meet your energy needs?” And you’re saying that we should just keep supporting their petroleum habit.

> This is not what you and I wanted, 20 years ago. Owen, the prohibition looked like a good idea, but it did not work.

Phrasing it like prohibition is where you depart from reality. Nobody was trying to prohibit people from using IPv4 as long as there were IPv4 addresses available. Now that we’re out, people are getting increasingly inventive about reusing them. For those that don’t/haven’t adopted IPv6 capabilities, this situation will continue to get worse and more costly and I have little sympathy. For those who have deployed IPv6 in their networks and are still saddled with maintaining compatibility with the remaining IPv4-only networks, our best hope is continuing education and eventually working to the point where the few remaining IPv4-only networks simply become irrelevant to the rest of us.

> We _do_ have a squatting situation.

Yeah, not really seeing that as a major problem. Would it be better if there were no such squatting? Sure. Is it the worst problem created by the lack of addresses in IPv4? Not by a long shot.

Does wasting a bunch of development effort making it possible to use just to reduce the squatting problem make any sense at all? Nope… Not a bit.


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