[Search] [txt|pdf|bibtex] [Tracker] [WG] [Email] [Nits]

Versions: 00                                                            
Internet Draft                                              Bill Manning
April 1996                                                           ISI
Expires in six months

                        Why consider Renumbering Now

Status of this Memo

   This document wants to be an Internet-Draft.  Internet-Drafts are working
   documents of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), its areas,
   and its working groups.  Note that other groups may also distribute
   working documents as Internet-Drafts.

   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.''

   To learn the current status of any Internet-Draft, please check the
   ``1id-abstracts.txt'' listing contained in the Internet- Drafts
   Shadow Directories on ds.internic.net (US East Coast), nic.nordu.net
   (Europe), ftp.isi.edu (US West Coast), or munnari.oz.au (Pacific

        This document is a fuller explanation of the intent and
goals of the PIER working group of the IETF.

        The current charter states that PIER will work with other
groups in identifying those locations in IP where the actual IP
addresses are used. This will lead to the development of a series
of educational materials for users of IP to recognize where IP
addresses are used.  In addition, PIER will assist other IETF working
groups in identifying processes and procedures, tools and techniques
that can be used to facilitate renumbering.

        That raises the question of why even consider renumbering.
The salient points have been raised in an IAB document[1] and on
various mailing lists.  To summarize, in IPv6, renumbering is a basic
design consideration, along with mobility and security. For those
that embrace this new version of IP, renumbering considerations must
be taken in to account in the network design and operations phases.

        In IPv4, this was not part of the original design constraint,
therefore most existing network infrastructure was designed without
any hooks to which facilitate easier renumbering.  It is within PIERs
charter to encourage those who design networks to consider adding
renumbering elements to future designs and in redesigns, as network
topologies are upgraded and changed. Consideration of renumbering in
the design will make future operations much easier. It could even be
argued that such features allow any network to be more nimble and react
to changes faster, leading to a competitive edge.

        The results in this approach are that as the designs change,
the network infrastructure mutates to be able to support renumbering.
This can be a slow mutation, allowing for advances in renumbering
techniques to mature. The larger tasks are efforts to change user
perception regarding the value of any particular IP address.  Others
have taken up this challenge and have produced a number of documents
that attempt to educate old and new IP users on this topic [2],[3].
PIERS efforts in this area are to provide additional education and
perhaps even one on one assistance in understanding the options
surrounding IP address selection.  Regardless of the outcome, some
social engineering will have been done, pointing out the logistics
involved in the renumbering process.

        And what about those who will not be migrating to IPv6 and do
not believe that IPv6 has anything viable to offer the Internet?  ALE
predictions indicate that the global Internet will run out of IPv4 space
eventually. One of the only ways to extend the lifetime of IPv4 is
through aggressive renumbering. This has been argued forcefully in other
mailing lists[4].  While the relative merits of this approach (staying
with IPv4 and aggressively renumbering into provider blocks) are still
being debated, the problem has similar characteristics to the IPv6
migration issues mentioned above.

        It is the intent of the PIER wg to facilitate the education
of both old and new IP users as well as architects and protocol and
application designers on the need to consider renumbering in network
design and operations.

[1] - RFC1900
[2] - Address Ownership considered Fatal - Yakov Rekter, Tony Li, Connexions
[3] - R. Moskowitz -
[4] - CIDR archives - 1995/1996

Security considerations of this memo


Authors Address

        Bill Manning
        4676 Admiralty Way
        Marina del Rey, CA. 90292