No announcement yet.

"Customer-owed" IP space?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • "Customer-owed" IP space?

    Anyone seen this, or know anything about it?

    The gentleman who posted it contends that the ruling was made in the Supreme Court of New Jersey. I am seeking to validate this.

    If it is in fact, the truth, I am interested in thoughtful viewpoints on the impact to ISP's.



    edit: That would be the Superior Court of New Jersey

  • #2
    Originally posted by r0cketgrl
    If it is in fact, the truth, I am interested in thoughtful viewpoints on the impact to ISP's.
    Here's my take on it (and much of this is based solely on my opinion, so I have no idea how accurate this may or may not be):

    It seems like the ruling was made from a jury's tenuous grasp of how IP address space is allocated. Most likely they were presented with the argument that it's allocated in the same way as telephone numbers, which may now be reassigned at will from carrier to carrier.

    While that is technically correct, they probably weren't made sufficiently aware of how the Domain Naming System abstracts the importance of the IP address - from what I gather, the dispute was over the portability of an IP address assigned to a domain name.

    What appears to have happened (again, speculation on my behalf) is that the jury fixated on the IP address being equivalent to a phone number, not realising that everyone accesses the site in question by its domain name - and that the NS records for the domain can easily be changed to reflect the use of a new IP address.

    As for how this impacts ISPs... I sure hope they like dynamic routing, because if this goes into effect it's going to be the only way they can manage their IP space.

    But for now I'm guessing that the impact is relatively minimal - most likely the ruling is going to be challenged, and until a result of that challenge is finalised in court the whole thing is in the theoretical. Hopefully people who are suitably technically-inclined will be able to explain how all of this works in a way that the jury can understand this time.


    • #3
      One of the challenges to router providers over the past few years has been to find ways to keep up with the ever growing number of routes on the Internet. Right now, a full BGP routing table is made up of about 141,000 networks, which isn't really all that much to store (about 14M), but it's a bitch to search.

      For each packet that comes in, a router has to do a LPM (longest prefix match) between the destination address and a route in the routing table to find out what interface to send it out. It's easy to do, but hard to do fast. Router vendors handle this by turning out faster hardware and using faster lookup algorithms, but I doubt if they could handle a significant increase in the number of networks to search, which is exactly what would happen if IP address space became portable. Just think about a router pushing about 2 Gbps (not much by today's standards). That's about 500,000 to 1,000,000 packets being looked up in a route table of 140,000 networks--every second.

      Increase the number of network, and you've got a mess.