Market Viability as a IPng Criteria
RFC 1669

Document Type RFC - Informational (August 1994; No errata)
Author John Curran 
Last updated 2013-03-02
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Network Working Group                                          J. Curran
Request for Comments: 1669                                           BBN
Category: Informational                                      August 1994

                  Market Viability as a IPng Criteria

Status of this Memo

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


   This document was submitted to the IETF IPng area in response to RFC
   1550. Publication of this document does not imply acceptance by the
   IPng area of any ideas expressed within.  Comments should be
   submitted to the mailing list.


   In an open marketplace, adoption of new technology is driven by
   consumer demand.  New technologies that wish to succeed in the
   marketplace must provide new capabilities or reduced costs to gain
   consumer confidence.  Internetworking technologies can be
   particularly difficult to deploy and must provide a correspondingly
   high return on investment.  In order to determine market viability of
   new internetworking technology, it's necessary to compare the
   required deployment effort against the potential benefits as seen by
   the customer.  "Viability in the Marketplace" is an important
   requirement for any IPng candidate and this paper is an attempt to
   summarize some important factors in determing market viability of
   IPng proposals.

"Pushing" Internetworking Technology

   It has been asserted by some that the adoption of a single IPng
   protocol by the computing industry would generate general acceptance
   in the networking industry.  There is ample evidence to support this
   view; for example, some of the today's more prevalent networking
   protocols gained initial market acceptance through bundling with
   computer operating systems (e.g. IP via UNIX, DECNET via VMS, etc.)
   It should be noted, however, that this approach to technology
   deployment is by no means assured, and some of today's most popular
   internetworking software (Novell, etc.) have thrived despite
   alternatives bundled by computing manufacturers.   Given that IPng
   will have to compete against an well established and mature

Curran                                                          [Page 1]
RFC 1669          IPng White Paper on Market Viability       August 1994

   internetworking protocol (IP version 4), promotion of an IPng
   solution by computer system manufacturers should be recognized as
   highly desirable but not sufficient on its own to ensure IPng
   acceptance in the marketplace.

Can IPng compete against IPv4?

   Given the large installed base of IPv4 systems, computer system
   manufacturers will need to continue to provide IPv4 capabilities for
   the foreseeable future.  With both IPng and IPv4 support in their new
   systems, users will be facing a difficult choice between using IPv4
   and IPng for internetworking.  Existing IPv4 users will migrate to
   IPng for one of three possible reasons:

New functionality not found in IPv4

   IPng needs to provide functionality equivalent to that currently
   provided by IPv4.  It remains to be seen whether additional
   functionality (such as resource reservation, mobility,
   autoconfiguration, autoregistration, or security) will be included in
   the base specification of any IPng candidate.  In order to provide
   motivation to migrate to IPng, it will be necessary for IPng
   proposals to offer capabilities beyond those already provided IPv4.

Reduced costs by using IPng

   It is quite unlikely that migration to IPng will result in cost
   savings in any organization.  Migration to IPng will certainly result
   in an increased need for training and engineering, and hence
   increased costs.

To gain connectivity to otherwise unreachable IPng hosts

   For existing sites with valid IPv4 network assignments, connectivity
   is not affected until address depletion occurs.  Systems with
   globally-unique IPv4 addresses will have complete connectivity to any
   systems since backwards-compatible communication is required of new
   IPng hosts.

   From the perspective of an existing IPv4 site, IPng provides little
   tangible benefit until IPv4 address depletion occurs and
   organizations reachable only via IPng appear.  Given the absence of
   benefits from migration,  it is uncertain whether a significant base
   of IPng sites will be occur prior to IPv4 address depletion.

   Sites which are not yet running IP have little motivation to deploy
   IPng for the immediate future.  As long as IPv4 network assignments
   are available, new sites have an choice to use IPv4 which provides

Curran                                                          [Page 2]
RFC 1669          IPng White Paper on Market Viability       August 1994

   the sufficient internetworking capabilities (measured in
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