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Versions: 00 01 02                                                      
INTERNET-DRAFT                                             Erik Nordmark
Oct 20, 2003                                            Sun Microsystems

                    Multihoming without IP Identifiers


   Status of this Memo

   This document is an Internet-Draft and is subject to all provisions
   of Section 10 of RFC2026.

   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-

   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."

   The list of current Internet-Drafts can be accessed at

   The list of Internet-Draft Shadow Directories can be accessed at

   This Internet Draft expires April 20, 2004.


   This document outlines a potential solution to IPv6 multihoming in
   order to stimulate discussion.

   This proposed solution relies on verification using the existing DNS
   to prevent redirection attacks, while allowing locator rewriting by
   (border) routers, with no per-packet overhead.  The solution does not
   introduce a "stack name" type of identifier, instead it ensures that
   all upper layer protocols can operate unmodified in a multihomed
   setting while still seeing a stable IPv6 address.

   DISCLAIMER: This work has been discussed extensively in a design
   team.  The design team is still exploring multiple approaches and

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   this is an attempt to capture one such approach on paper.  Because of
   this and due to lack of time to review the document one can not say
   that this is a product of the DT; errors and confusions should be
   attributed to the scribe and not to the DT.

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      1.  INTRODUCTION.............................................    4
         1.1.  Non-Goals...........................................    4
         1.2.  Assumptions.........................................    5

      2.  TERMINOLOGY..............................................    5
         2.1.  Notational Conventions..............................    6

      3.  PROTOCOL OVERVIEW........................................    6
         3.1.  Host Pair Context...................................   10

      4.  PROTOCOL WALKTHROUGH.....................................   11
         4.1.  Initial Context Establishment.......................   11
         4.2.  Locator Change......................................   13
         4.3.  Handling Locator Failures...........................   14
         4.4.  Locator Set Changes.................................   14

      5.  HANDLING STATE LOSS......................................   15

      6.  ENCODING BITS IN THE IPv6 HEADER?........................   17

      7.  COMPATIBILITY WITH STANDARD IPv6.........................   18

      8.  APPLICATION USAGE OF IDENTIFIERS.........................   18

      9.  CHECKSUM ISSUES..........................................   19

      10.  IMPLICATIONS FOR PACKET FILTERING.......................   19

      11.  IPSEC INTERACTIONS......................................   20

      12.  SECURITY CONSIDERATIONS.................................   20

      13.  DESIGN ALTERNATIVES.....................................   20

      14.  OPEN ISSUES.............................................   20

      15.  ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS........................................   21

      16.  REFERENCES..............................................   21
         16.1.  Normative References...............................   21
         16.2.  Informative References.............................   22

      AUTHORS' ADDRESSES...........................................   23

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   The goal of the IPv6 multihoming work is to allow a site to take
   advantage of multiple attachments to the global Internet without
   having a specific entry for the site visible in the global routing
   table.  Specifically, a solution should allow users to use multiple
   attachments in parallel, or to switch between these attachment points
   dynamically in the case of failures, without an impact on the upper
   layer protocols.

   This proposed solution uses existing DNS mechanisms to perform enough
   validation to prevent redirection attacks.

   The goals for this proposed solution is to:
    o Have no impact on upper layer protocols in general and on
      transport protocols in particular.

    o Address the security threats in [M6SEC].

    o Allow routers rewriting the (source) locators as a means of
      quickly detecting which locator is likely to work for return

    o No per-packet overhead.

    o No extra roundtrip for setup.

    o Take advantage of multiple locators/addresses for load spreading.

1.1.  Non-Goals

   The assumption is that the problem we are trying to solve is site
   multihoming, with the ability to have the set of site locator
   prefixes change over time due to site renumbering.  The assumption is
   that such changes to the set of locator prefixes can be relatively
   slow and managed; slow enough to allow updates to the DNS to
   propagate.  Thus this proposal does not attempt to solve, perhaps
   related, problems such as host multihoming or host mobility.

   This proposal also does not try to provide an IP identifier.  Even
   though such a concept would be useful to ULPs and applications,
   especially if the management burden for such a name space was zero
   and there was an efficient yet secure mechanism to map from
   identifiers to locators, such a name space isn't necessary (and
   furthermore doesn't seem to help) when using the DNS to verify the

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   locator relationships.

1.2.  Assumptions

   The main technical assumptions this proposal makes is that the DNS
   infrastructure can be used for verification of the relationship
   between locators on both the initiator of communication and the
   responding peer.  In particular, it assumes that getting DNS reverse
   maps (ip6.arpa) populated for the nodes that wish to take advantage
   of multihoming will not be a significant problem.


      upper layer protocol (ULP)
                  - a protocol layer immediately above IP.  Examples are
                    transport protocols such as TCP and UDP, control
                    protocols such as ICMP, routing protocols such as
                    OSPF, and internet or lower-layer protocols being
                    "tunneled" over (i.e., encapsulated in) IP such as
                    IPX, AppleTalk, or IP itself.

      interface   - a node's attachment to a link.

      address     - an IP layer name that contains both topological
                    significance and acts as a unique identifier for an
                    interface.  128 bits.

      locator     - an IP layer topological name for an interface or a
                    set of interfaces.  128 bits.  The locators are
                    carried in the IP address fields as the packets
                    traverse the network.

      identifier  - an IP layer identifier for an IP layer endpoint
                    (stack name in [NSRG]).  The transport endpoint is a
                    function of the transport protocol and would
                    typically include the IP identifier plus a port
                    number.  NOTE: This proposal does not contain any IP
                    layer identifiers.

      Application identifier (AID)
                  - an IP locator which has been selected for
                    communication with a peer to be used by the upper
                    layer protocol.  128 bits.  This is used for
                    pseudo-header checksum computation and connection
                    identification in the ULP.  Different sets of

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                    communication to a node (e.g., different
                    connections) might use different AIDs in order to
                    enable load spreading.

      address field
                  - the source and destination address fields in the
                    IPv6 header.  As IPv6 is currently specified this
                    fields carry "addresses".  If identifiers and
                    locators are separated these fields will contain

      FQDN        - Fully Qualified Domain Name

2.1.  Notational Conventions

   A, B, and C are nodes.

   FQDN(A) is the domain name for A.

   Ls(A) is the locator set for A, which consists of L1(A), L2(A), ...

   AID(A) is an application ID for A.  AID(A) is always one member of


   In order to prevent redirection attacks this protocol relies on the
   DNS (for the nodes which support this protocol) having maintained and
   consistent forward and reverse maps.  This allows any node, given one
   locator, to determine the corresponding FQDN and the set of locators
   for the node.  Once those lookups have been performed, and the
   original locator is indeed part of the set, the node can happily
   allow any of those locators without being subject to redirection
   attacks.  Keeping the FQDN around allows the solution to handle
   graceful renumbering by being able to redo the DNS (e.g., based on
   the TTL on the resource records).

   DNS is also used to provide an indication of M6 capability of a node.
   The details of this is TBD but a simple example would be to introduce

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   a new M6 RR type in the DNS which has no RDATA; thus the mere
   existence of such a record at a FQDN implies that the node supports
   the M6 protocol.

                            | Transport Protocols |

             ------ ------- -------------- -------------
             | AH | | ESP | | Frag/reass | | Dest opts |
             ------ ------- -------------- -------------

                            | M6 shim layer |

                                | IP |

   Figure 1: Protocol stack

   The proposal uses an M6 shim layer between IP and the ULPs as shown
   in figure 1, in order to provide ULP independence.  Conceptually the
   M6 shim layer behaves as if it is an extension header, which would be
   ordered immediately after any hop-by-hop options in the packet.
   However, the amount of data that needs to be carried in an actual M6
   extension header is close to zero.  By using some encoding of the
   nexthdr value it is possible to carry the common protocols/extension
   headers without making the packets larger.  The nexthdr encodings are
   discussed later in this document.  We refer to packets that use this
   encoding to indicate to the receiver that M6 processing should be
   applied as "M6 packets" (analogous to "ESP packets" or "TCP

   Layering AH and ESP above the M6 shim means that IPsec can be made to
   be unaware of locator changes the same way that transport protocols
   can be unaware.  Thus the IPsec security associations remain stable
   even though the locators are changing.  Layering the fragmentation
   header above the M6 shim makes reassembly robust in the case that
   there is broken multi-path routing which causes different paths,
   hence potentially different source locators, for different fragments.

   The proposal uses router rewriting of (source) locators as one way to
   determine which is the preferred (or only working) locator to use for
   return traffic.  But not all packets can have their locators
   rewritten.  In addition to existing IPv6 packets, the packets
   exchanged before M6 host-pair context state is established at the

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   receiver can not have their locators rewritten.  Thus a simple
   mechanism is needed to indicate to the routers on the path whether or
   not it is ok to rewrite the locators in the packet.  Conceptually
   this is a single bit in the IPv6 header (we call it the "rewrite ok"
   bit) but there is no spare bit available.  Later in the document we
   show how we solve this by allocating a range of next header values to
   denote this semantic bit.

   Applications and upper layer protocols use AIDs which the M6 layer
   will map to/from different locators.  The M6 layer maintains state,
   called host-pair context, in order to perform this mapping.  The
   mapping is performed consistently at the sender and the receiver,
   thus from the perspective of the upper layer protocols packets appear
   to be sent using AIDs from end to end, even though the packets travel
   through the network containing locators in the IP address fields, and
   even though those locators might be rewritten in flight.

      ----------------------           ----------------------
      | Sender A           |           | Receiver B         |
      |                    |           |                    |
      |      ULP           |           |      ULP           |
      |       | src AID(A) |           |       ^            |
      |       | dst AID(B) |           |       | src AID(A) |
      |       v            |           |       | dst AID(B) |
      |       M6           |           |       M6           |
      |       | src L1(A)  |           |       ^            |
      |       | dst L1(B)  |           |       | src L2(A)  |
      |       v            |           |       | dst L1(B)  |
      |       IP           |           |       IP           |
      ----------------------           ----------------------
              |                                ^
              -- cloud with some routers -------
                                          src L2(A) [Rewritten]
                                          dst L1(B)
   Figure 2: Mapping with router rewriting of locators.

   The result of this consistent mapping is that there is no impact on
   the ULPs.  In particular, there is no impact on pseudo-header
   checksums and connection identification.

   Conceptually one could view this approach as if both AIDs and
   locators being present in every packet, but with a header compression
   mechanism applied that removes the need for the AIDs once the state
   has been established.  As we will see below the flowid will be used
   akin to a "compression tag" i.e., to indicate the correct context to
   use for decompression.

   The need for some "compression tag" is because the desire to allow

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   load spreading and handle site renumbering.  Without those desires it
   could have been possible to e.g. designate one fixed locator as the
   AID for a node and storing that in the DNS.  But instead different
   connections between two nodes are allowed to use different AIDs and
   on reception of a M6 packet the correct AIDs my be inserted into the
   IP address fields before passing the packet to the ULP.  The flowid
   serves as a convenient "compression tag" without increasing the
   packet size, and this usage doesn't conflict with other flowid usage.

   In addition to the zero overhead data messages, there are three
   different M6 message types introduced (which could be defined as new
   ICMPv6 messages).  They are used to perform a 3-way handshake to
   create state at both endpoints without creating state on the first
   received packet (which would introduce a memory consumption DoS
   attack). The three message types are called:

    o Context request message; first message of the 3-way context
      establishment.  Sent by the responder when a data packet arrives
      witn no context state.  An ULP packet can be piggybacked on this

    o Context response message; second message of the 3-way context
      establishment.  Sent in response to a context request.  An ULP
      packet can be piggybacked on this message.

    o Context confirm message; third message of the 3-way context
      establishment.  Sent in response to a context response.  An ULP
      packet can be piggybacked on this message.

   Similar to MAST [MAST] the above exchange can be performed
   asynchronously with data packets flowing between the two nodes; until
   context state has been established at both ends the packets would
   flow without allowing router rewriting of locators and without the
   ability for the hosts to switch locators.

   Once the 3-way state creation exchange has completed there is host-
   pair context state at both hosts.  At that point in time the
   responder (which didn't use DNS before the setup) can asynchronously
   start retrieving and verifying additional locators using the DNS.
   Once a peer locator has been verified the node will accept packets
   from that locator as well as dynamically switch to using the last
   received source locator (that is already verified) as the destination
   locator for return traffic.

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3.1.  Host Pair Context

   The host pair context is established on the initiator of
   communication based on information learned from the DNS (either by
   starting with a FQDN or with an IP address -> FQDN lookup).  The
   responder will establish some initial state using the context 3-way
   handshake and later discover and verify the peer's locators using the

   The context state contains the following information:

    - the peer locator which the ULP uses as ID; AID(peer)

    - the local locator which the ULP uses as ID; AID(local)

    - the set of peer locators; Ls(peer)

    - for each peer locator, a bit whether it has been verified with the
      DNS (by doing reverse + forward lookup)

    - the preferred peer locator - used as destination; Lp(peer)

    - the set of local locators; Ls(local)

    - the preferred local locator - used as source; Lp(local)

    - the flowid used to transmit packets; F(local)

    - the flowid to expect in receive packets; F(peer)

    - the fqdn for the peer; FQDN(peer)

    - State about peer locators that are in the process of being
      verified in the DNS

   This state is accessed differently in the transmit and receive paths.
   In the transmit path when the ULP passes down a packet the key to the
   context state is the tuple <AID(local), AID(peer)>; this key must
   identify at most one state record.  In the receive path it is the
   F(peer) plus one of the locators in each of Ls(local) and Ls(peer)
   that are used to identify at most one state record.

   These uniqueness requirements imposed by those lookup keys uniquely
   identifying one state record means that one can not create multiple
   records (e.g. with different FQDN or locator sets) that have the same
   AID pair, and the peer must pick a flowid so that host pair contexts
   which have at least one common members in Ls(local) and in the
   Ls(peer) sets, but with different AID pair, gets a different

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   F(local).  The context state at both ends must be consistent for this
   to be completely robust.  One way of ensuring this is to have each
   node perform a periodic DNS lookup of its own FQDN in order to have a
   current Ls(local) that is the same as the Ls(peer) that the peer
   would find in the DNS.

   Note that the flowids could be selected to be finer grain than above;
   for instance having a different flowid for each connection.  Doing so
   requires some efficient datastructure organization at the receiver to
   map multiple F(peer) to the same context.


4.1.  Initial Context Establishment

   Here is the sequence of events when A starts talking to B:

    1.  A looks up FQDN(B) in the DNS which returns Ls(B) plus "B is M6
        capable" One locator is selected to be returned to the
        application: AID(B) = L1(B) The others are installed in the M6
        layer on the host with AID(B) being the key to find that state.
        To make sure that the lookup from AID(B) returns a single state
        record it appears that one needs to do a reverse lookup AID(B)-
        >fqdn and check that the result is FQDN(B).  Whether this check
        can be deferred until two entities try to use the same AID(B)
        for a different Ls is for further study.  Always doing the
        reverse lookup would be more predictable in any case.

    2.  The ULP creates "connection" state between AID(A)=L1(A) and
        AID(B) and sends the first packet.  L1(A) was picked using
        regular source address selection mechanisms.

    3.  The M6 layer matches on AID(B) and finds the proto-context state
        (setup in step #1) with Ls(B).  The existence of that state will
        make the M6 layer send a M6 packet.  The M6 layer selects a
        flowid F(local) consistent with the above uniqueness
        requirements (which ensure that the receiver will map to the
        correct AID pair).

    4.  The packet (TCP SYN or whatever) is sent to peer with locators

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        L1(A) to L1(B) i.e., the same as the AIDs.  Since B doesn't have
        any context state yet, A will not set the "rewrite ok" bit in
        the header.

    5.  Node B receives packet and sees it is a "M6 packet".  Passes the
        packet to the M6 shim layer.  The M6 layer can't create state on
        the first packet, but since the rewrite bit is not set in the
        packet it can pass the packet unmodified to the ULP.  The ULP
        sees a packet identified by AID(A), AID(B).

        The M6 layer initiates a state creation 3-way exchange by
        forming a context request message.  The same technique as in
        [MIPv6] can be used to securely do this exchange without any
        local state; use a local key which is never shared with anybody
        and pass the context state, a timestamp, and the keyed hash of
        the state+timestamp in the context request packet.  When the
        state, timestamp, and keyed hash value is returned in the
        context response message, the hash is used to verify that the
        state hasn't been modifed.

        The 3-way exchange is done asynchronously with ULP packets, but
        it is possible (assuming the MTU allows) to piggyback ULP
        packets on this exchange.

        Should ULP packets be passed down to the M6 layer on B before
        the context response message has been received there will be no
        context state and no state installed as a result of a DNS lookup
        (as on A).  This will indicate that the ULP message should be
        passed as-is (not as an M6 message) to the peer.  Thus during
        the 3-way exchange packets can flow in both directions using the
        original locators=AIDs.

    6.  Node A receives the context request message.  It verifies that
        the message is related to something it sent by looking at the
        locators (should match the AIDs) and the flowid it sent (which
        is in the state in the context request message).

        If a ULP packet was piggybacked A will pass that to the ULP.

        Then A sends a content response which has the same information
        as the context request plus a nonce/timestamp that A selected.

    7.  Node B receives the context response message.  It verifies that
        the hash of the state is correct using its per-node key.  At
        this point in time it knows that A is at least not just blasting
        out packets as a DoS - A is also responding to context request
        messages.  Thus B goes ahead and allocates state at this point
        in time using the state that is in the context response message.

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        The M6 layer selects a flowid F(B) consistent with the above
        uniqueness requirements (which ensure that the receiver will map
        to the correct AID pair).  At this point in time B has enough
        information to handle M6 packets from A, even though it hasn't
        yet determined and verified any additional peer locators from
        the DNS.  It has also the state (F(B) mainly) necessary send
        data packets to A with "rewrite ok" set.  Thus B sends a context
        confirm message to A which contains A's nonce/timestamp from the
        context response and F(B).

        If a ULP packet was piggybacked on the context response B will
        pass that to the ULP.

        At this point in time B can start asynchronously and
        incrementally to extract and verify Ls(A) from the DNS.  The
        first lookup consists of finding L1(A)=AID(A) in ip6.arpa to get
        the FQDN and record it, and lookup the AAAA RR set for that FQDN
        to get Ls(A).  Then verify (also incrementally) that each member
        of Ls(A) is indeed assigned to A by doing a reverse lookup of
        each one (except L1(A) which was already looked up).  Only when
        the reverse lookup of a given peer locator has completed is that
        locator marked as verified.

    8.  Node A receives the context confirm message, verifies the
        nonce/timestamp, and records F(peer) from the packet.

        If a ULP packet was piggybacked on the context confirm A will
        pass that to the ULP.

        At this point in time A knows that B has context state, thus it
        can start sending packets with "rewrite ok" set.

4.2.  Locator Change

   This is the sequence of events when B receives a packet with a
   previously unused source locator for A, for instance L2(A).

   Node B receives M6 packet with source L2(A) and destination L1(B).
   Looks up context state using the flowid and the locators.  If this
   lookup succeds then the locator is acceptable for incoming packets
   (even though it might not have been verified for use as return
   traffic) and the packet is rewritten to contain the AIDs from the
   context state and passed to the ULP.

   If L2(A) has not been verified then it would make sense for B to put
   that first in the list of asynchronous DNS verifications that are

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   needed.  If/once L2(A) has been verified B can make it the preferred
   peer locator for use when sending packets to AID(A).

   The verification needs to complete before using the locator as a
   destination in order to prevent 3rd party DoS attacks [M6SEC].

   If a node receives a packet with a known flowid but where the
   locators (src and dst) are not part of the sets it drops the packet.
   [TBD: Useful vs. harmful to send ICMP error?]

4.3.  Handling Locator Failures

   Should not all locators be working when the communication is
   initiated some extra complexity arises, because the ULP has already
   been told which AIDs to use.  If the locators that where selected to
   be AIDs are not working it isn't possible to send a zero-overhead
   initial packet from A to B.  Instead both the AIDs and the working
   locators need to be conveyed.  This could be done by either reusing
   IP-in-IP encapsulating or defining another M6 message type which
   carries both.

   After context setup the sender can use retransmit hints from the ULP
   to get the M6 layer to try a different verified locator.

   If one outbound path from the site fails and the border routers
   rewrite source locators then the peer in another site will see
   packets with the working source locators.  Once that has locator been
   verified, the return path will switch to use the working locator.  As
   long as both ends are transmitting packets this will relatively
   quickly switch to working locators except when both nodes experience
   a failing locator at the same time.

   Without locator rewriting one would need to add some notification
   e.g., by defining a new bit in the router advertisement prefixes
   (IMHO this is semantically different than the preferred vs.
   deprecated stuff), but we also need some mechanism to carry this info
   from the border routers to the routers on each subnet.

4.4.  Locator Set Changes

   Due to events like site renumbering the set of locators assigned to a
   node might change at a slow rate.  Since this proposal uses the
   locators in the DNS as the credible source for which locators are
   assigned there is some coordination necessary to ensure that before a

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   host, or the border routers for a site doing rewriting, start using a
   new source locator, that locator has propagated through the DNS so
   that the peer could have discovered it.

   Due to concerns about having packets with unknown, hence potentially
   bogus, source locators triggering DNS lookups this proposal instead
   uses the DNS TTL as an indication that the set of locators need to be
   refreshed.  One could also envision a combination of receiving a
   packet *and* the DNS TTL having expired as the trigger to redo the
   DNS lookups.

   When DNS TTL expires on either node it performs a new fqdn->Ls lookup
   to get the new set of locators. (Presumably failures to redo the
   lookup shouldn't have a negative effect.)


   The protocol needs to handle two forms of state loss:

    - a peer loosing all state,

    - the M6 layer garbage collecting state too early due to not being
      aware of what all ULPs do.

   The first case is the already existing case of a node crashing and
   "rebooting" and as a result loosing transport and application state.
   In this case there are some added complications from the M6 layer
   since a peer will continue to send packets assuming the context still
   exists and due to the loss of state on the receiver it isn't even
   able to pass the correct packet up to the ULP (e.g., to be able to
   get TCP to generate a reset packet) since it doesn't know what AIDs
   to use when replacing the locators.

   The second case is a bit more subtle.  Ideally an implementation
   shouldn't discard the context state when there is some ULP that still
   depends on this state.  While this might be possible for some
   implementations with a fixed set of applications, it doesn't appear
   to be possible for implementations which provide the socket API;
   there can be things like user-level "connections" on top of UDP as
   well as application layer "session" above TCP which retain the
   identifiers from some previous communication and expect to use those
   identifiers at a later date.  But the M6 layer has no ability to be
   aware of this.

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   Thus an implementation shouldn't discard context state when it knows
   it has ULP connection state (which can be checked in e.g., Unix for
   TCP), or when there is active communication (UDP packets being sent
   to AID(A) recently), but when there is an infrequently communicating
   user-level "connection" over UDP or "session" over TCP the context
   state might be garbage collected even though it shouldn't.

   For instance if B lost all state and A retransmits a packet with
   flowid, L3(B), L2(A) then what is needed is a packet to L1(B) from
   L1(A) passed to the ULP so that the ULP can send an error (such as a
   TCP reset).  But B has no matching state thus it needs to send an
   error back.  Should the packet not have "rewrite ok" set it can pass
   it to the ULP since it knows that such packets contain locators that
   are AIDs.  Thus the protocol needs a "Unknown context" error message
   - probably akin to the one defined in [CB128].

   Local loss of context state (on B in this example) has slightly
   different issues since without any context state the M6 layer on B
   can not determine whether a peer is a standard IPv6 node or a node
   which supports multihoming.  B can determine this by doing a reverse
   lookup of AID(A)->FQDN(A) followed by a FQDN(A) lookup to see of
   there is an M6 record (and get the locator set of A as well).

   But if B is communicating with both standard IPv6 nodes and nodes
   which support multihoming then it has to avoid doing these DNS
   lookups for every packet sent to a standard IPv6 node.
   Implementation tricks (such as "has this socket ever used M6" flag at
   the socket layer, and "negative caching" of peers that do not support
   M6) can be useful to avoid performance overhead.

   If as part of this B determines that A is M6 capable it has the same
   information as the initiator during the initial context establishment
   thus it can follow that procedure.  If A didn't garbage collect its
   end of the state this will require some extra work to come up with a
   single host-pair context for a pair of AIDs at both ends with
   consistent flowids in the two nodes (i.e., F(local) needs to match
   F(peer) at the other node).  Specifying this is for further study.

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   The idea is to pick extra IP protocol values for common combinations,
   and have a designated protocol value to capture the uncommon IP
   protocols which might use M6.

   We pick two unused ranges of IP protocol values which 8 numbers each
   (assuming we will not need more than 7 common transport protocols).
   The ranges start at P1 and P2, respectively:
   P1      TCP over M6 - rewrite ok
   P1+1    UDP over M6 - rewrite ok
   P1+2    SCTP over M6 - rewrite ok
   P1+3    RDDP over M6 - rewrite ok
   P1+4    ESP over M6 - rewrite ok
   P1+7    escape - any protocol over M6 - rewrite ok
           In this case we spend another 8 bytes (minimum IPv6
           extension header size due to alignment rule) to carry
           the actual IP protocol.  This causes some mtu concerns for those
           protocols, but they aren't very likely to be used with M6?

   P2      TCP over M6 - no rewrite
   P2+1    UDP over M6 - no rewrite
   P2+2    SCTP over M6 - no rewrite
   P2+3    RDDP over M6 - no rewrite
   P2+4    ESP over M6 - no rewrite
   P2+7    escape - any protocol over M6 - no rewrite
           In this case we spend another 8 bytes (minimum IPv6
           extension header size due to alignment rule) to carry
           the actual IP protocol.  This causes some mtu concerns for those
           protocols, but they aren't very likely to be used with M6?

   Thus a router would check if the protocol is in the P1 range and if
   so, it can rewrite the locator(s).  A host would check a received
   packet against both P1 and P2 ranges and if so pass it to the M6 shim

   Some possible alternatives to the above encoding is to:

    - use something combination of the universal/local and group bit in
      the interface id of the source address to indicate "rewrite ok".

    - steal the ECN bits from the traffic class before ECN becomes a
      proposed standard?  Don't think this will be popular!

    - always have a shim header - adds 8 bytes overhead per packet.

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   A node can easily implement M6 in a way that interoperates with
   current IPv6 as follows.

   When the DNS lookup routines do not find an M6 record for the peer
   they will return the AAAA resource record set to the application;
   those would be the IPv6 addresses.  When the ULP passes down these
   addresses the M6 layer will not have any state generated by the DNS
   lookup code, thus no M6 processing will take place on the sender.
   (Note that this interferes with the M6 layer state recovery concerns

   The receive side handles both standard IPv6 and M6 since it
   demultiplexing on whether a packet is an M6 packet.


   The upper level protocols will operate on AIDs which are mere
   locators.  Thus as long as a site hasn't renumbered the AID can be
   used to either send packets to the node, or (e.g. if that locator
   isn't working), it is possible for an application to do a reverse
   lookup plus forward lookup of the AID to get the set of locators for
   the peer.

   Once a site has been renumbered the AIDs which contain the old prefix
   will no longer be useful.  Hence applications must try to honor the
   DNS TTL somehow.

   Applications which use to map the peer's IP address to a domain name
   today perform a reverse lookup in the DNS (e.g., using the
   getnameinfo() API).  This proposal doesn't add or subtract to the
   benefits of performing such reverse lookups.

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   The IPv6 header does not have a checksum field; the IPv6 address
   fields are assumed to be protected by the ULP pseudo-header checksum.
   The general approach of an M6 shim which replaces locators with
   identifiers (where only the identifiers are covered by ULP checksum)
   raises the potential issue of robustly handling bit errors in the
   address fields.

   With the definition of the M6 shim there can be undetectable bit
   errors in the flowid field or the nexthdr field which might adversely
   affect the operation of the protocol.  And since the AIDs are what's
   covered by the ULP's pseudo-header checksum the locators in the
   address fields are without checksum protection.  Since the locators
   are verified against the set of locators determined from the DNS, the
   worst effect of an undetected bit error in the locators is an error
   message being sent back [TBD]

   Undetected bit errors in the flowid can have the following effects


   Ingress filtering should be replaced by locator rewrite when the
   "rewrite ok" bit is set.

   Locator rewriting (when the bit is set) can be applied at places
   where ingress filtering isn't currently performed (e.g., due to
   multihoming issues).

   Firewall filtering potentially require modifications to be aware of
   M6.  All the packets contain locator thus a firewall would need to be
   aware of the context state to let the correct packets through.  Such
   firewalls could optionally perform their own verification by issuing
   DNS lookups the same way as the endpoint.  However, the firewalls
   probably has to be more careful not exposing themselves to DoS
   attacks by doing too much DNS lookups.

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   As specified all of ESP, AH, and key management is layered above the
   M6 layer.  Thus they benefit from the stable identifiers provided
   above the M6 layer.  This means the IPsec security associations are
   unaffected by switching locators.

   The alternative would be to layer M6 above IPsec, but that doesn't
   seem to provide any benefits.  Since we want to allow routers
   performing locator rewriting it isn't possible to take advantage of
   for instance AH to protect the integrity of the IP headers.


   Early analysis indicates this addresses the issues in [M6SEC].


   Use an actual extension header for M6 and place the context tag in
   that header instead of using the flowid.  This would make the packets
   8 bytes larger since the minimum extension header size is 8 bytes due
   to the alignment rules for extension headers in IPv6.


   DNS lookup fails or times out on the receiver; what should one do?
   Send error?

   Is it possible to facilitate transition to M6 using some "M6 proxy"
   at site boundaries until all important hosts in a site have been
   upgraded to support M6?  Would would be the properties of such a
   proxy?  Would it place any additional requirements on the protocol

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   One of the issues with FQDNs mapping to AAAA records is that in some
   cases multiple AAAA records mean a multihomed host and in other cases
   it means multiple hosts providing the same service.  If we need to
   introduce a new RRtype for M6, would it be useful to try to make this
   host/service distinction more clear at the same time?  An example
   solution would be that the M6 record would by its existence indicate
   the M6 capability, and its RDATA would contain a list of host names
   which would be used to resolve the AAAA records for each host
   implementing the service.

   Would destination locator rewriting be a useful way for the routing
   system to pass some information to the node?  Or is source locator
   rewriting sufficient?


   This document is the result of discussions in a MULTI6 design team
   but is not the "product" of that design team.  The scribe wishes to
   acknowledge the contributions of (in alphabetical order):  Iljitsch
   van Beijnum, Brian Carpenter, Tony Li, Mike O'Dell, and Pekka Savola.

   The idea to allow locator rewriting by routers was first presented by
   Mike O'Dell [ODELL96].  The techniques for avoiding state DoS attacks
   on the first packet are patterned after [MIPv6].


16.1.  Normative References

     [M6SEC] Nordmark, E., and T. Li, "Threats relating to IPv6
             multihoming solutions", draft-nordmark-multi6-threats-
             00.txt, October 2003.

     [ADDR-ARCH] S. Deering, R. Hinden, Editors, "IP Version 6
             Addressing Architecture", RFC 3513, April 2003.

     [IPv6] S. Deering, R. Hinden, Editors, "Internet Protocol, Version

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             6 (IPv6) Specification", RFC 2461.

16.2.  Informative References

     [NSRG] Lear, E., and R. Droms, "What's In A Name: Thoughts from the
             NSRG", draft-irtf-nsrg-report-09.txt (work in progress),
             March 2003.

     [MIPv6] Johnson, D., C. Perkins, and J. Arkko, "Mobility Support in
             IPv6", draft-ietf-mobileip-ipv6-24.txt (work in progress),
             June 2003.

     [AURA02] Aura, T. and J. Arkko, "MIPv6 BU Attacks and Defenses",
             draft-aura-mipv6-bu-attacks-01 (work in progress), March

     [NIKANDER03] Nikander, P., T. Aura, J. Arkko, G. Montenegro, and E.
             Nordmark, "Mobile IP version 6 Route Optimization Security
             Design Background", draft-nikander-mobileip-v6-ro-sec-01
             (work in progress), June 2003.

     [ODELL96] O'Dell M., "8+8 - An Alternate Addressing Architecture
             for IPv6", draft-odell-8+8-00.txt, October 1996,

             AN EXTENDED PROPOSAL", draft-crocker-mast-protocol-01.txt,
             October, 2003.

     [CB128] E. Nordmark, "Strong Identity Multihoming using 128 bit
             Identifiers (SIM/CBID128)", draft-nordmark-multi6-sim-
             00.txt, October 2003.

     [IPv6-SA] R. Atkinson.  "Security Architecture for the Internet
             Protocol".  RFC 2401, November 1998.

     [IPv6-AUTH] R. Atkinson.  "IP Authentication Header", RFC 2402,
             November 1998.

     [IPv6-ESP] R. Atkinson.  "IP Encapsulating Security Payload (ESP)",
             RFC 2406, November 1998.

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     Erik Nordmark
     Sun Microsystems, Inc.
     17 Network Circle
     Mountain View, CA

     phone: +1 650 786 2921
     fax:   +1 650 786 5896
     email: erik.nordmark@sun.com

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