Guidelines for Management of IP Address Space
RFC 1466

Document Type RFC - Informational (May 1993; No errata)
Obsoleted by RFC 2050
Obsoletes RFC 1366
Author Elise Gerich 
Last updated 2020-06-04
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Network Working Group                                          E. Gerich
Request for Comments: 1466                                         Merit
Obsoletes: 1366                                                 May 1993

             Guidelines for Management of IP Address Space

Status of this Memo

   This memo provides information for the Internet community.  It does
   not specify an Internet standard.  Distribution of this memo is


   This document has been reviewed by the Federal Engineering Planning
   Group (FEPG) on behalf of the Federal Networking Council (FNC), the
   co-chairs of the Intercontinental Engineering Planning Group (IEPG),
   and the Reseaux IP Europeens (RIPE).  There was general consensus by
   those groups to support the recommendations proposed in this document
   for management of the IP address space.

1.0  Introduction

   With the growth of the Internet and its increasing globalization,
   much thought has been given to the evolution of the network number
   allocation and assignment process. RFC 1174, "Identifier Assignment
   and Connected Status", [1] dated August 1990 recommends that the
   Internet Registry (IR) continue as the principal registry for network
   numbers; however, the IR may allocate blocks of network numbers and
   the assignment of those numbers to qualified organizations.  The IR
   will serve as the default registry in cases where no delegated
   registration authority has been identified.

   The distribution of the registration function is desirable, and in
   keeping with that goal, it is necessary to develop a plan which
   manages the distribution of the network number space.  The demand for
   network numbers has grown significantly within the last two years and
   as a result the allocation of network numbers must be approached in a
   more systematic fashion.

   This document proposes a plan which will forward the implementation
   of RFC 1174 and which defines the allocation and assignment of the
   network number space.  There are three major topics to be addressed:

Gerich                                                          [Page 1]
RFC 1466     Guidelines for Management of IP Address Space      May 1993

      1) Qualifications for Distributed Regional Registries

      2) Allocation of the Network Number Space by the Internet Registry

      3) Assignment of the Network Numbers

2.0  Qualifications for Distributed Regional Registries

   The major reason to distribute the registration function is that the
   Internet serves a more diverse global population than it did at its
   inception.  This means that registries which are located in distinct
   geographic areas may be better able to serve the local community in
   terms of language and local customs. While there appears to be wide
   support for the concept of distribution of the registration function,
   it is important to define how the candidate delegated registries will
   be chosen and from which geographic areas.

   Based on the growth and the maturity of the Internet in Europe, North
   America, Central/South America and the Pacific Rim areas, it is
   desirable to consider delegating the registration function to an
   organization in each of those geographic areas.  Until an
   organization is identified in those regions, the IR will continue to
   serve as the default registry.  The IR remains the root registry and
   continues to provide the registration function to all those regions
   not covered by distributed regional registries.  And as other regions
   of the world become more and more active in the Internet, the
   Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) and the IR may choose to
   look for candidate registries to serve the populations in those
   geographic regions.

   It is important that the regional registry is unbiased and and widely
   recognized by network providers and subscribers within the geographic
   region.  It is also important that there is just a single regional
   registry per geographical region at this level to provide for
   efficient and fair sub-allocation of the address space.  To be
   selected as a distributed regional registry an organization should
   meet the following criteria:

      a) networking authorities within the geographic area
         legitimize the organization,

      b) the organization is well-established and has
         legitimacy outside of the registry function,

      c) the organization will commit appropriate resources to
         provide stable, timely, and reliable service
         to the geographic region,

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RFC 1466     Guidelines for Management of IP Address Space      May 1993

      d) is committed to allocate IP numbers according to
         the guidelines established by the IANA and the IR, and

      e) is committed to coordinate with the IR to establish
         qualifications and strategies for sub-allocations of
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