Please Don’t Push the Buttons Randomly – IETF 88 Part 3 – Guest Blog by Cathy Aronson

By Jennifer Bly - External Relations Manager, ARIN

ARIN Advisory Council member, Cathy Aronson, is at IETF 88 in Vancouver, BC, Canada this week. Follow along as she shares hers findings with us on TeamARIN!

Guest blog post by Cathy Aronson

Please Don't Push the Buttons RandomlyWell I blinked and it’s already mid week here at IETF.   Here are some highlights as I see them.

Nov 5th the Internet Society hosted a lunch. The topic was “IPv6: what does success look like?”.   I am not sure if we determined yet what success looks like.  Some ideas were these:

  • Usage of IPv4 is trending downwards
  • VPNs also ran over IPv6 so corporate networks running IPv6 would work for folks connecting in remotely
  • A large wireless company pushing out v6 only devices perhaps using NAT64
  • Transition technologies are no longer needed
  • In 2020 we still have the Internet and folks can still get to everything
  • Users get IPv6 by default from their ISP
  • Software is IP version agnostic. IP is IP and should not mean IPv4

I think some really great things are happening.  For example, Comcast’s John Brzozowski says that 75% of their broadband network now supports IPv6 and 25% of those are currently using it.  Next year they plan to have 100% of their broadband network supporting IPv6.   Right now, however, when they turn up a home with IPv6 only 20% or so of the traffic is IPv6.  This needs to improve.   As I have mentioned before in my talks Comcast is also looking for ways to do all their internal traffic over IPv6.   They also have an IPv6 only trial in the works.

Another positive is that Teredo (a transition mechanism) is going to be turned off sometime next year.  Last month at the ARIN meeting I talked about the experiment where they turned of Teredo briefly.  Chris Palmer says that Microsoft will still be using Teredo for peer to peer Xbox applications but not for relay service.

Right now 2% of the Internet traffic is IPv6.  They now can show IPv6 and IPv4 on the same graph without the scales being hosed (it’s the simple things).  The trend in the slides was definitely up and to the right.  These are all good signs.

Cathy Aronson So what else is going on at IETF?  I’ll circle back on some more IPv6 stuff in the upcoming days but I want to talk a little bit about the “Internet-wide Geo-Networking BOF”  It is stated to be “Location aware solution that provides packet delivery using geographical coordinates for packet dissemination over the Internet”.

I am still trying to get my mind around this and to decide if it’s the bad idea fairy or not.  The idea is that there are all these devices out there, for example, cars. So an application may want to tell all the cars in a geographic area where the closest open charging station is located.  They talked some about geographically assigned addresses and at first it seemed they were talking about IP addresses but then it seemed as if maybe they meant some huge database of geolocation addresses that map to IP addresses.  I am having a hard time getting my mind around some car speeding down the road at 70mph and a service trying to maintain at any moment in time where it is and how to contact it.   Further these cars may be connected to different ISP infrastructures.  Just as an FYI if you want to read further there is a vehicular wireless standard that is 802.11p.

So next… as you might expect there is a lot of time being dedicated to security and privacy on the Internet in light of the NSA gathering large amounts of data on everyone.  The IETF is starting to formulate how it is going to be dealt with in Internet Standards.

From the technical plenary on November 6th the following summary has been set out.  These are a series of IETF “hums”.  Basically for those of you who haven’t been to IETF the whole process is based on “rough consensus and running code”.  Rough consensus is often determined by asking folks to hum (yes literally).  These are the hums from the plenary.

1.  The IETF is willing to respond to the pervasive surveillance attack?

    Overwhelming YES.  Silence for NO.

2. Pervasive surveillance is an attack, and the IETF needs to adjust our threat model to consider it when developing standards track specifications.

    Very strong YES.  Silence for NO.

3. The IETF should include encryption, even outside authentication, where practical.

    Strong YES.  Silence for NO.

4.  The IETF should strive for end-to-end encryption, even when there are middleboxes in the path.

    Mixed response, but more YES than NO.

5.  Many insecure protocols are used in the Internet today, and the IETF should create a secure alternative for the popular ones.

    Mostly YES, but some NO.

So we’ll see what happens with this over time.  I suggest that everyone interested in this subject join the IETF perpass mailing list.

Also this draft is really relevant.  I expect more work to be done in this area over the upcoming years.



Any views, positions, statements or opinions of a guest blog post are those of the author alone and do not represent those of ARIN. ARIN does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness or validity of any claims or statements, nor shall ARIN be liable for any representations, omissions or errors contained in a guest blog post.



Jennifer Bly

External Relations Manager, ARIN