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Responder Initiated IP Addresses Update in MOBIKE

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This is an older version of an Internet-Draft whose latest revision state is "Expired".
Author Valery Smyslov
Last updated 2017-05-30
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Network Working Group                                         V. Smyslov
Internet-Draft                                                ELVIS-PLUS
Updates: 4555, 6311 (if approved)                           May 30, 2017
Intended status: Standards Track
Expires: December 1, 2017

           Responder Initiated IP Addresses Update in MOBIKE


   IKEv2 Mobility and Multihoming Protocol (MOBIKE) allows peers to
   update their IP addresses without re-establishing IKE and IPsec
   Security Associations (SAs).  In the MOBIKE protocol it is the
   Initiator of the IKE SA, who is responsible for selecting new SA
   addresses and for initiating the IP addresses update procedure.  This
   document presents an extension to the MOBIKE protocol that allows the
   Responder to initiate the update.

Status of This Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF).  Note that other groups may also distribute
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   Drafts is at

   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
   and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on December 1, 2017.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2017 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   ( in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must

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   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   2
   2.  Terminology and Notation  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   3.  Protocol Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   4.  Protocol Description  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
     4.1.  Capability Advertising  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
     4.2.  Responder Initiated IP Address Update . . . . . . . . . .   5
       4.2.1.  High Availability Cluster Scenario  . . . . . . . . .   7
   5.  Payload Formats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
     5.1.  MOBIKE_SUPPORTED Notification . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
     5.2.  SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS Notification . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
   6.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
   7.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
   8.  References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
     8.1.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
     8.2.  Informative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   Author's Address  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10

1.  Introduction

   The Internet Key Exchange protocol version 2 (IKEv2), specified in
   [RFC7296], is a key part of the IP Security (IPsec) architecture.  It
   allows peers to perform authenticated key exchange, which results in
   establishing IKE Security Association (IKE SA) and to create a data
   protection channels called IPsec Security Associations (IPsec SAs).
   In original IKEv2 the IKE and IPsec SAs are established between the
   IP addresses used in IKEv2 negotiation.  The IKEv2 Mobility and
   Multihoming Protocol (MOBIKE), specified in [RFC4555], extends the
   IKEv2 functionality by allowing peers to dynamically change IP
   addresses of the established SAs without the need to re-establish
   these SAs.

   The main use case for the MOBIKE protocol is a remote access user
   that travels and moves from one from one IP address to another
   without re-establishing existing SAs with the VPN gateway.  However,
   the MOBIKE also supports more complex scenarios when VPN gateway is
   multihomed and its addresses may change over time.

   In the MOBIKE it is the Initiator (e.g. the remote access client) who
   is responsible for detecting the working IP addresses pairs and for
   deciding which pair to use.  In other words, the Responder (e.g. the
   VPN gateway) plays a passive role and could neither initiate the IP
   address update process nor tell the Initiator which IP address is

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   preferred to use.  This limitation makes use of complex scenarios
   less efficient and decreases the value of MOBIKE protocol.

   For example, if the VPN gateway is a load sharing cluster where each
   node has its own IP address, then the cluster must be able to move SA
   between nodes depending on their current load.  Currently Redirect
   Mechanism for IKEv2 [RFC5685] can accomplish this task, however it
   requires IKE SA to be re-established, that is very inefficient.
   Another possible solution is to use IKE SA Cloning along with the
   MOBIKE (see [RFC7791] for scenario description), but the limitation
   of the MOBIKE protocol makes this problematic.  Obviously, the client
   has insufficient information to select when and to which of cluster
   IP addresses to move an SA to and the VPN gateway has no means to
   provide the client with this information.

   This specification extends the MOBIKE protocol by adding ability for
   the Responder to ask the Initiator for IP address update and to
   provide it with the new IP address to use.

2.  Terminology and Notation

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   document are to be interpreted as described in [RFC2119].

   In this document the term "Initiator" means the party who originally
   initiated the first IKE SA (in a series of possibly several rekeyed
   IKE SAs), and "Responder" means the other party.  This is consistent
   with a way these terms are used in [RFC4555].  Note, that in
   [RFC7296] the terms "original initiator" and "original responder"
   mean the party, who initiated (or responded to) the latest IKE SA in
   a series of possibly several rekeyed IKE SAs.

3.  Protocol Overview

   The MOBIKE protocol is designed in such a way, that it is the IKE SA
   Initiator, who is responsible for performing the actions concerned
   with the selecting of a working IP addresses pair and for initiating
   an IP addresses update exchange.  Usually the Initiator selects an IP
   addresses pair by continuously probing different pairs and choosing
   the working one.  If several pairs work then the choice between them
   is arbitrary.  The Responder cannot influence the process of
   selecting and cannot ask the client to immediately switch to a
   particular gateway's address.  As a result the process of selection a
   new pair takes substantial time and may ends up with a suboptimal
   path.  Moreover, in case the Responder isn't multihomed (and thus
   doesn't provide the Initiator with a list of additional IP

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   addresses), the change of its IP address cannot be handled by the

   Obviously, this limitation comes from the fact that there might be
   middleboxes on the path (like Network Address Translators (NAT) or
   firewalls) that might disallow IP packets to come from VPN gateway to
   the client unless the client first contacts the VPN gateway.  For
   example, the client might reside behind a dynamic NAT that creates a
   mapping when IP packet first come from the client to the gateway.  If
   the gateway tries to send an IP packet to the client from different
   IP address, the packet would be dropped since the NAT box has no
   corresponding mapping.

   This specification provides the following solution to the described
   problem.  When the Responder decides that its end of existing SA
   should be switched from its original IP address IP_R1 to a new
   address IP_R2, it initiates an INFORMATIONAL exchange containing a
   new notification SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS, that contains IP_R2.  The
   request message of this exchange is sent from IP_R1 address, so that
   an existing middlebox mappings are used and the message can reach the
   Initiator.  However, the response message is sent to a newly
   presented IP_R2 address, so that a new middlebox mappings are
   created.  Once the Initiator completes exchange containing
   SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS notification, it immediately initiates standard
   MOBIKE procedure for updating SA addresses by starting the
   INFORMATIONAL exchange containing UPDATE_SA_ADDRESSES notification.

4.  Protocol Description

4.1.  Capability Advertising

   According to [RFC4555], the peers must exchange MOBIKE_SUPPORTED
   notifications in the IKE_AUTH exchange before they can use the MOBIKE
   protocol.  If the Initiator supports this specification and is
   willing to use it, then it MUST include a single octet 0x52 ('R') in
   the notification data of the MOBIKE_SUPPORTED notification sent to
   the Responder.  There is no need for the Initiator to know whether
   the Responder supports this specification or not, so the
   MOBIKE_SUPPORTED notification sent by the Responder has an empty
   notification data.

   Note, that [RFC4555] specifies that MOBIKE_SUPPORTED notification
   must contains no data when sending and the content of the
   notification data must be ignored while parsing.  So, So, if the
   Responder doesn't support this specification, it will just ignore the
   content of the MOBIKE_SUPPORTED notification and will use MOBIKE
   without this extension.

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   (IP_I1:500 -> IP_R1:500)
   HDR, SAi1, KEi, Ni,

                             <--  (IP_R1:500 -> IP_I1:500)
                                  HDR, SAr1, KEr, Nr,

   (IP_I1:4500 -> IP_R1:4500)
            SAi2, TSi, TSr,
            N(MOBIKE_SUPPORTED('R')) }  -->

                             <--  (IP_R1:4500 -> IP_I1:4500)
                                  HDR, SK { IDr, CERT, AUTH,
                                            SAr2, TSi, TSr,
                                            N(ADDITIONAL_IP4_ADDRESS) }

4.2.  Responder Initiated IP Address Update

   If the Initiator advertised its support for this specification during
   the initial exchange as described in Section 4.1, then the Responder
   is free to initiate IP Address Update request at any time.  If the
   Initiator doesn't indicate its support for this extension, then the
   Responder MUST NOT initiate IP Address Update request.  The IP
   Address Update request NUST NOT be initiated by the Initiator, the
   Responder MUST take no action if it receives such a request (apart
   from sending an empty response message to complete the exchange).

   It is up to the Responder to decide when to initiate an IP Address
   request and what new address to include into it.  Some of the
   possible reasons are:

   o  Responder's IP address is changed due to Network Interface Card
      (NIC) reconfiguration

   o  Responder is multihomed and wishes to switch SA to a different IP

   o  Responder is a cluster and wishes to move SA to a different node
      having its own IP address

   The Responder requests the Initiator to update SA Address by
   initiating the INFORMATIONAL exchange containing a new status type
   notification SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS.  The notification data of this

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   notification contains a new IP address the Responder requests the
   Initiator to use for the IKE SA and its Child SAs.  Note, that the
   exchange request message MUST be sent using old SA addresses.  In the
   example below the SA was established using IP_I1 and IP_R1 addresses
   for the Initiator and Responder respectively, and the Responder
   wishes to change the address of its end of the SA to IP_R2.  So, it
   initiates the INFORMATIONAL exchange from IP_R1 address containing
   the SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS notification with IP_R2 address.  However,
   since the response message should come on a new address (IP_R2), at
   this point the Responder MUST be able to receive packets on the IP
   address it included in the SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS notification.

                         <--  (IP_R1:4500 -> IP_I1:4500)
                              HDR, SK { N(SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS(IP_R2)) }

   Since the request is sent using old SA addresses, it is expected to
   pass through the middleboxes and reach the Initiator because it must
   use existing mappings.

   Upon receiving the SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS notification the Initiator
   extracts its content and makes a decision whether the received IP
   address is appropriate for the SA.  If the received IP address is
   among the addresses previously received from the Responder in
   it is definitely appropriate for the SA.  Otherwise local policy must
   be consulted to decide whether the received IP is appropriate.  If
   the address is considered inappropriate, then the Initiator MUST
   complete the exchange by sending an empty message to an old address
   (IP_R1) and continue to use this address.  It is RECOMMENDED that the
   Initiator immediately initiates Liveness Check exchange to ensure
   that the Responder is able to operate using old address.

   (IP_I1:4500 -> IP_R1:4500)
   HDR, SK {}  -->

   If the Initiator decides that the received address is appropriate, it
   completes the exchange by sending an empty response message to the
   newly received address (IP_R2).  Since the response message to the
   new Responder's address flows in the original direction (from the
   Initiator to the Responder), it should create new mappings in
   middleboxes, thus allowing further communication between them.  After
   the response message is sent the Initiator MUST immediately initiate
   an IP address update procedure according to the MOBIKE specification
   by sending the INFORMATIONAL exchange request message containing the
   UPDATE_SA_ADDRESSES notification.  See [RFC4555] for details.  As a
   result, the remote IP address of the SA is changed from IP_R1 to
   IP_R2.  Note that only the IP address is changed, the port remains
   the same.

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   (IP_I1:4500 -> IP_R2:4500)
   HDR, SK {}  -->

   (IP_I1:4500 -> IP_R2:4500)
             N(COOKIE2) }  -->

                             <--  (IP_R2:4500 -> IP_I1:4500)
                                  HDR, SK { N(NAT_DETECTION_SOURCE_IP),
                                       N(COOKIE2) }

   The Responder MUST NOT change IP address of the SA until it receives
   the UPDATE_SA_ADDRESSES notification from the Initiator.  Note, that
   there is no need for the Responder to perform Return Routability
   check once the addresses are updated since it itself requested to
   change IP address of the SA and it successfully received a response
   from the Initiator sent to the new address.  However, depending on
   the Responder's policy, the Return Routability check MAY be

   If the Responder doesn't receive a response message on a request
   containing the SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS notification after several
   retransmissions, then it means that either request or response
   message cannot use the new path and pass through the middleboxes.  In
   this case the Responder's behavior depends on whether it advertised
   additional IP addresses before and whether old SA address is still

   If old SA address is unavailable and no alternative addresses were
   advertised before, then the IKE SA and all associated Child SAs MUST
   be torn down.  Otherwise the SA MAY be kept in an anticipation that
   the Initiator after some time detects the old IP address failure
   itself and performs IP addresses update.

4.2.1.  High Availability Cluster Scenario

   In case the VPN gateway is a cluster consisting of several nodes each
   having its own IP address, both Load Sharing (LS) and High
   Availability (HA) goals may be achieved.  For the purposes of HA the
   nodes share an IKE SA state while only one of them communicate with
   the IKE SA peer at any given time.  Of the active node fails, the
   other nodes detect this fact and select a new active node for the SAs
   the failed node served.  The selected node must then instruct the
   failed node peers to switch their SAs to a new IP address using this

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   Since some exchanges might be in progress when the active node fails,
   some special measures must be taken to ensure that the IKE SA state
   is synchronised between the new active cluster node and the client.
   Protocol Support for High Availability of IKEv2/IPsec [RFC6311]
   describes the necessary measures.  In particular, the new active node
   initiates the INFORMATIONAL exchange containing the
   IKEV2_MESSAGE_ID_SYNC notification and optionally the
   IPSEC_REPLAY_COUNTER_SYNC notification.  [RFC6311] states that no
   other payload must be included in this exchange.  However, in case
   the IP address of the new active node differs from the IP address of
   the failed active node it is necessary to combine the
   IKEV2_MESSAGE_ID_SYNC and the SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS notifications in
   one exchange.  So, this specification updates [RFC6311] in this
   regard: if HA cluster nodes have different IP addresses then in case
   of failover the request to synchronize Message IDs and the request to
   change IP address MUST be sent together in the same INFORMATIONAL

                         <--  (IP_R1:4500 -> IP_I1:4500)
                              HDR, SK { N(SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS(IP_R2))
                                        [N(IPSEC_REPLAY_COUNTER_SYNC)] }

   (IP_I1:4500 -> IP_R2:4500)

   Once this exchange is completed the client MUST immediately perform
   an IP address update procedure according to the MOBIKE specification
   as described in Section 4.2.

5.  Payload Formats

5.1.  MOBIKE_SUPPORTED Notification

   The MOBIKE_SUPPORTED Notification is defined in [RFC4555],
   Section 4.2.1 with the Notify Message Type 16396.  This definition
   requires the notification data to be empty while sending and to be
   ignored when notification is received.

   This document updates the definition from [RFC4555].  Exchange
   Initiator sets the notification data of the MOBIKE_SUPPORTED
   Notification to a single octet 0x52 ('R') to indicate that this
   specification is supported.

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5.2.  SWITCH_TO_IP_ADDRESS Notification

   The Notify Message Type for this notification is <TBA by IANA>.  The
   notification data contains new Responder's IP address.

   For IPv4, the notification data is 4 octets long and is defined as

                        1                   2                   3
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
   |                 New Responder's IPv4 Address                  |

   For IPv6, the notification data is 16 octets long and is defined as

                        1                   2                   3
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
   |                                                               |
   |                 New Responder's IPv6 Address                  |
   |                                                               |
   |                                                               |

   The Protocol ID and SPI Size fields are set to zero.

6.  Security Considerations

   This specification is an extension of the MOBIKE protocol, so the
   Security Considerations described in [RFC4555] are applied.

7.  IANA Considerations

   This document defines new Notify Message Types in the "IKEv2 Notify
   Message Types - Status Types" registry:


8.  References

8.1.  Normative References

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC2119, March 1997,

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   [RFC4555]  Eronen, P., "IKEv2 Mobility and Multihoming Protocol
              (MOBIKE)", RFC 4555, DOI 10.17487/RFC4555, June 2006,

   [RFC6311]  Singh, R., Ed., Kalyani, G., Nir, Y., Sheffer, Y., and D.
              Zhang, "Protocol Support for High Availability of IKEv2/
              IPsec", RFC 6311, DOI 10.17487/RFC6311, July 2011,

   [RFC7296]  Kaufman, C., Hoffman, P., Nir, Y., Eronen, P., and T.
              Kivinen, "Internet Key Exchange Protocol Version 2
              (IKEv2)", STD 79, RFC 7296, DOI 10.17487/RFC7296, October
              2014, <>.

8.2.  Informative References

   [RFC5685]  Devarapalli, V. and K. Weniger, "Redirect Mechanism for
              the Internet Key Exchange Protocol Version 2 (IKEv2)",
              RFC 5685, DOI 10.17487/RFC5685, November 2009,

   [RFC7791]  Migault, D., Ed. and V. Smyslov, "Cloning the IKE Security
              Association in the Internet Key Exchange Protocol Version
              2 (IKEv2)", RFC 7791, DOI 10.17487/RFC7791, March 2016,

Author's Address

   Valery Smyslov
   PO Box 81
   Moscow (Zelenograd)  124460

   Phone: +7 495 276 0211

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