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The Internet United States

North America Runs Out of IPv4 Addresses 307

DW100 writes: The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) has been forced to reject a request for more IPv4 addresses for the first time as its stock of remaining address reaches exhaustion. The lack of IPv4 addresses has led to renewed calls for the take-up of IPv6 addresses in order to start embracing the next era of the internet.
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North America Runs Out of IPv4 Addresses

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  • by Chas ( 5144 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @09:42AM (#50032799) Homepage Journal

    The sky is falling!

    The sky is falling!

    It hit me on the head! *OW! NOT THAT ONE!*

    "Runs out".

    Yeah. Okay. And how many companies are sitting on vast blocks that are only partially tapped?

    This isn't so much an issue of lack (though at some point it'll become that).
    It's an issue created by how assignment of address blocks was and is managed.

    • by Daimanta ( 1140543 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @09:48AM (#50032853) Journal

      Trying to get companies with big internet presence to return their allocated blocks to the (ARIN)-pool would take for too much time and effort and is without any form of guarantee. Furthermore, even if they would manage to return the blocks to the pool in a couple of years, it would both be too late and too little and the demand for address space far outpaces the supply that ipv4 can offer. Realistically, ipv6 is the only long-term solution for any part of the world even including Africa as the increase of internet availability on the continent will rapidly consume their own pool. Hopefully, the African states are smart enough to push for an ipv6-enabled infrastructure.

      • Why would they return something that they could sell?
        • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:18AM (#50033117)

          Because they can't sell it. As the current ruler of Microsoft, John Thompson, admitted, they broke the rules intentionally when they bought a block of addresses from Nortel in 2011. ICANN talked about taking action, but backed down after Gates picked a dishonest and untrustworthy moron like Thompson that has political connections to the White House. Obama said Thompson was on the short list for Commerce Secretary, and has admitted that Microsoft has unlimited access to the Oval Office. Thompson is very well connected. That is why Gates appointed him to run Microsoft despite the fact he isn't that bright and has recently shown very bad signs of Alzheimer's wrt his confused and contradictory statements on how much Microsoft plans to charge for Windows 10 subscriptions for the "free" upgrade. We still don't know how badly those of us who take the "free" upgrade are going to be screwed in the long run.

        • Specifically, if you are interested in buying some from companies who already have them, you can go here. [apnic.net]
          Presumably they will get more and more expensive until it's cheaper to just get hardware that supports IPv6.
    • Yeah. Okay. And how many companies are sitting on vast blocks that are only partially tapped?

      There's some interesting economics coming up. Companies will bid up the price of IPv4 blocks, but that will also make it look like a better idea to move to IPv6. Google's stats [google.com] show IPv6 users have gone up from roughly 3.5% to 7% in twelve months. If you expand the graph you'll see IPv6 is higher at weekends, when people are at home, and lower on weekdays.

      So the price of IPv4 will go up, but this will push companies toward IPv6 migration, and when that happens the worth of IPv4 blocks will drop significantl

      • by Creepy ( 93888 )

        Now someone convince my ISP to upgrade their damn hardware already (PPPoE that only supports IPv4). My machines and domain were configured to support IPv6 for a decade-and-a-half now, but only one ISP supported it. Had to drop that line (run by COVAD) due to the expense and not needing 99.9% uptime requirements (because I stopped running a business on it - it now runs my hobby site).

    • by Ultra64 ( 318705 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:19AM (#50033131)

      >And how many companies are sitting on vast blocks that are only partially tapped?

      Good idea, let's make those companies give up their /8s.

      That should give us a few more weeks worth of IP addresses.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Only a tiny fraction of people online today, were around to see the internet when it worked. Remember when every machine had a real routable IP address. NAT sucks for everything but making windows machines slightly harder to find before infesting them with malware.

    • Making IPv4 expensive is the only way IPv6 is ever going to happen. My local cable company bragged in the news about rolling out IPv6 to the whole country. That was two years ago. I called to find out when IPv6 was going to be offered in my area. There is no timetable nor any plan to provide it. I live in a suburban area in a city of over 150,000. The retail ISPs simply aren't interested in upgrading their equipment. They have partial monopolies in their coverage areas, and until it becomes so expens
      • by Creepy ( 93888 )

        I live in a moderately large city and a densely packed suburb, but have had that problem for years, but only because I refuse to do business with Comcast. The providers outside of Comcast seem disinterested in updating any hardware in the neighborhood because we lack businesses. Comcast, OTOH, has rolled out new services to my neighborhood first, exactly because we are densely packed and they care less about business services than selling TV package bundles (internet is secondary, businesses are a bonus, bu

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Yeah. Okay. And how many companies are sitting on vast blocks that are only partially tapped?

      Almost none, except for companies that have been grandfathered in from the beginning of the Internet. ICANN cannot legally touch those. It would cost those companies a lot of man hours to remove those IPs, potentially months, and even after those months of work, the number of IPs returned would only last a few weeks.

      The only way to efficiently make use of the IP addresses is to be less wasteful, which means smaller subnets, which means more routes. We're already bumping up against the limit for the number

      • "Almost none, except for companies that have been grandfathered in from the beginning of the Internet."

        Almost one is an actual value. Better expressed as 'some'.

        I'm guessing that at least some of the 20+ owners of /8 blocks could part with them entirely and manage, but who will pay that expense? A few are actually selling off space. Some have complex ownership structures now due to spinoffs and divestitures. Some will be deaf to the requests.

        And some thoroughly enjoy the cachet of a /8 address space, ev

  • EMBARCE! EXTNED! EXTNIGUISH!
  • My cell phone has been on IPv6 for years. Everything I have is ready for the conversion. What is holding it up?
    • by halltk1983 ( 855209 ) <halltk1983@yahoo.com> on Thursday July 02, 2015 @09:51AM (#50032877) Homepage Journal
      Comcast Business, which only got me dynamic ipv6 a couple months ago, and still haven't gotten around to static allocations to match my static v4 allocation. Also, a lot of people's home routers. But mostly apathy.
    • Privacy? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by hcs_$reboot ( 1536101 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:05AM (#50032995)

      My cell phone has been on IPv6 for years. Everything I have is ready for the conversion. What is holding it up?

      There is a small interesting detail about IPv6 that is almost never mentioned. An IPv6 address counts 128 bits. Typically the "top" 64 bits are provided by your ISP and will be used to route the packets through the Internet. The 64 remaining LSb have to be unique within the subnet (typically a LAN), and usually these 64 bits are made from the MAC address of the interface linked to this IPv6 address (padded if 48 bits). That means for instance that knowing your IPv6 address, someone is likely to know also your MAC address (of the device used), that is usually the maker/configurator of the NIC (eg Apple, MS ...). And if the shop where you bought the device keep track of your MAC address - like Apple for instance - they may be able to identify you precisely, based on your IPv6 address (eg when you access their web site).

      • Re:Privacy? (Score:5, Informative)

        by kc9jud ( 1863822 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:13AM (#50033057)

        ...and usually these 64 bits are made from the MAC address of the interface linked to this IPv6 address (padded if 48 bits).

        I think what you're looking for is RFC 4941 [ietf.org], Privacy Extensions for Stateless Address Autoconfiguration in IPv6:

        This document describes an extension to IPv6 stateless address autoconfiguration for interfaces whose interface identifier is derived from an IEEE identifier. Use of the extension causes nodes to generate global scope addresses from interface identifiers that change over time, even in cases where the interface contains an embedded IEEE identifier. Changing the interface identifier (and the global scope addresses generated from it) over time makes it more difficult for eavesdroppers and other information collectors to identify when different addresses used in different transactions actually correspond to the same node.

      • by cjb658 ( 1235986 )

        A lot of people complained about this, so a "temporary" (in Windows) IPv6 address is generated that's not based on your MAC.

      • change your Mac address every so often.
      • by Megane ( 129182 )
        Or you could, you know, give it a manual assignment (or a static address assignment on your DHCP server) of the low 64 bits. That way you could also make use of the short form of an address like "b1ab:1ab1:ab1a:b1ab::1".
    • by bondsbw ( 888959 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:17AM (#50033107)

      My cell phone has been on IPv6 for years. Everything I have is ready for the conversion. What is holding it up?

      Suckage.

      I recently disabled IPv6 on my router because too many sites were slow loading. It was particularly bad with Wikipedia, which usually just timed out after a few minutes. OTOH, IPv4 works fine for the same sites.

      I don't know where the trouble is, Wikipedia or my ISP (U-Verse) or somewhere in between or some problem with my computer... but in its current state, I can't endorse switching.

      • It is conversions and tunnels that add real overhead. Best thing is to get large isps to simply switch their residence over to ipv6.
      • by Creepy ( 93888 )

        The addresses are longer, so there will be a bit of a hit because of that, but I suspect the routing table for IPv6 between you and that site has fewer nodes and those nodes are overloaded. Either that or the government is weighting certain nodes to route your data to specific places like England and back so they can vacuum it all up and use it for domestic spying. That would be the paranoid option, as they definitely wouldn't do something like that. Or would they?

      • Same with Comcast. I tried for a years actually, but some things were too slow. Ubuntu and Debian repos in particular were painfully slow, even on my VMs on linode, digital ocean, and prgmr. I ended up having the servers force IPv4 for them when their IPv6 servers went down for days. Speed and latency on IPv6 have gotten much worse over the last couple years in my experience.

        Also, it appears Android doesn't play nice with IPv6. It basically silently drops the connection eventually (I'm guessing it stops lis

      • by Drakonblayde ( 871676 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @02:53PM (#50035193)

        My cell phone has been on IPv6 for years. Everything I have is ready for the conversion. What is holding it up?

        Suckage.

        I recently disabled IPv6 on my router because too many sites were slow loading. It was particularly bad with Wikipedia, which usually just timed out after a few minutes. OTOH, IPv4 works fine for the same sites.

        I don't know where the trouble is, Wikipedia or my ISP (U-Verse) or somewhere in between or some problem with my computer... but in its current state, I can't endorse switching.

        I actually see alot of this. Customers complaining about slow surf, and these days, that's one of two things - A. Capacity B. Bad IPv6 routing. Since v6 is preferred, if the v6 path is bad, it'll take awhile to time out before it falls back to ipv4, and looks alot like network latency.

        A large part of the problem is that companies are defining AAAA DNS records without making sure that their upstream provider has actually gotten their v6 routing in shape, but even the ones that have done that doesn't help when the end user is connected to a network that isn't directly connected to their destination, and the end users provider doesn't have their v6 routing in shape.

        The real holdup, however, are the end user networks. Most of them simply aren't built to be accessible over ipv6. It's possible for the ISP's to provide entirely transparent v6 connectivity to it's end users, but if the places they're trying to go isn't v6 capable, that engineering has gone to waste. It's still wise to do it, as a migration to v6 is inevitable, but it's hard to justify the money making it right.

        Unfortunately, I suspect that most folks will simply try and use stopgap measures. Carrier grade NAT, transparent gateway proxying, etc.

        Eventually there will come a point where someone smart will say 'you know, we're spending alot of time and effort and adding more points of failure to the network to try and keep this legacy connectivity alive. It will actually simplify operations if we just go ipv6 native'.

        If you're smart, and you have the opportunity to build out a network in this time and place, you do it dual stacked, and treat ipv6 connectivity as seriously as you treat ipv4 connectivity.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 02, 2015 @09:48AM (#50032859)

    Everyone I know just uses 127.0.0.1. What do we need all these new ones for?

    • Actually - except Ubuntu who uses 127.0.1.1 as well (due to some bug) - the 127.0.0.0/8 network is a waste as a whole "class A" is unused (IPv6 reserves just one address for the loopback access, ::1!).
      • by Megane ( 129182 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:50AM (#50033497) Homepage

        Also, the "Class D" (multicast) address space (224/4) is extremely under-utilized (IIRC, only 3 of the 16 /8s are even used), and IPv4 multicast is mostly a failure anyhow.

        And the "Class E" space (240/4) is unusable because the TCP/IP stack in Windows NT and later was explicitly coded to consider those as bad addresses and not even attempt to communicate with them. Thanks a lot, anal-retentive programmer-guy.

        Those two together account for 32 "Class A" equivalent addresses, or one eighth of the IPv4 address space.

  • Wow, if only some major provider of computing resources could somehow pool them and resell access, and support IPv6 at the same time. I bet that would drive adoption. Oh well, it was a dream. Still can't use it on Amazon (excluding the worthless-to-me ELB).

  • Hey, maybe this is a Serious Thing.

    It's tough to tell, though, as we've been OMG RUNNING OUT OF IPv4 ADDRESSES REAL SOON NOW for the past decade and a half, give or take.

    • by sjames ( 1099 )

      Perhaps all of that was an attempt to motivate at least a lukewarm response to the obviously coming problem so people wouldn't end up running around with their hair on fire later.

      • Perhaps all of that was an attempt to motivate at least a lukewarm response to the obviously coming problem so people wouldn't end up running around with their hair on fire later.

        Oh I get that, I'm just saying that years of teeth-gnashing and arm-flailing has had pretty much the opposite of the desired effect.

        This has been pitched as a dire and urgent danger for ages. The IPv4 address exhaustion problem [wikipedia.org] Wikipedia article is nearly nine years old, for crying out loud.

        This will get sorted out like pretty much every single other technical capacity issue gets sorted out: once the pain and cost of not acting becomes prohibitive, people will act, and it will cease to be an issue.

  • There are a few large companies in the USA that refused to relinquish large Class A blocks, shoot even to sell them... these companies (which I'd love to name) missed the boat when IPv4 address costs (for sale) was highest and are actually waiting for this next "crisis" in hopes that they can get billions for Class A nets (these companies date back to "the beginning" and the use their Class A addresses for non-Internet facing internal addressing (that is they are wasting the addresses) simply because they l
    • these companies (which I'd love to name) missed the boat when IPv4 address costs (for sale) was highest and are actually waiting for this next "crisis" in hopes that they can get billions for Class A nets (these companies date back to "the beginning" and the use their Class A addresses for non-Internet facing internal addressing (that is they are wasting the addresses) simply because they lack the skills to change).

      IBM has the technical know-how to stop using routable addresses internally, but their class A is part of their culture. I imagine the same is true for other class A holders.

    • Not lack of skill, things are very nice when you can use real addresses for everything. I worked at national lab that is still that way even now

    • by xaxa ( 988988 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:08AM (#50033023)

      It's correct to use assigned addresses for internal hosts. The point is they're unique — you can set up a tunnel between any two organisations, or merge two networks, and not have to renumber things because both were using 10/8.

      The cost to renumber and use their assignment more efficiently would be huge, similar to the cost to move to IPv6 but with little gain.

    • Poppycock. Best thing is for these companies, such as att, to keep holding them. We need to move off ipv4. Now, we have more and more incentives to do so.
    • The addresses aren't there. v4 is just plain too small. Freeing up a few /8s won't change that: there are more than 2^32 devices connected to the internet, so no matter how many blocks you reclaim, it's still not going to be big enough.

    • by Megane ( 129182 )

      these companies (which I'd love to name)

      Here, I'll name them for you... List of assigned /8 IPv4 address blocks [wikipedia.org]

      Well, okay, they're in that list somewhere along with everybody else. I've also heard that at least one of those networks in the UK (25/8?) isn't even connected to the routed internet, yet it is still assigned the space. And seriously, what does DISA really need four /8 blocks for?

      And I find it ironic that HP ended up with two adjacent /8 blocks that can't be merged into a /7.

  • by Snotnose ( 212196 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @09:53AM (#50032901)
    I'm only using 8 addresses out of my 192.168.1.1/24 class C block, I could probably be talked into auctioning off the other 240+ addresses. Call me, maybe?
    • by higuita ( 129722 )

      I have several full class C (10.*.*.0/24) to sell, cheaper than the previous post!! don't wait, call now! :)

    • by Megane ( 129182 )
      I'm only using a few out of my 127/8 class A block, the bidding for the rest starts at one milllllllion dollars. (puts pinky next to mouth)
  • by Arancaytar ( 966377 ) <arancaytar.ilyaran@gmail.com> on Thursday July 02, 2015 @09:57AM (#50032943) Homepage

    Maybe after twenty years, companies will get around to fully supporting IPv6.

    (That, or they'll start abusing the shit out of NAT.)

  • by amias ( 105819 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:06AM (#50033005) Homepage Journal

    A lot of people rely on NAT for simple security and get scared when faced with IPV6's global addressing.
    securing IPV6 networks is not so straight forward and often requires site specific approaches that are beyond a lot of home users or small businesses.

    its a good thing to run firewalls on everything but its also pain.

    I can see there being some crazy security breaches and much confusion during the changeover, as a tester every network product i've tested
    has had a test plan for ipv6 that gets de-prioritised to the bottom because 'nobody is using ipv6 yet' and its hard to find people who know about it.

    • Look. Most residence and small businesses have modems in which the firewall is automatically enabled. That is what saves them, not NAT. For medium and large business, they can run a decent firewall.
    • by Bert64 ( 520050 ) <bert.slashdot@firenzee@com> on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:28AM (#50033233) Homepage

      All the routers i've seen implement statefull filtering on ipv6 and allow all outbound and no inbound (except traffic related to an outbound connection) by default, which is functionally identical to their ipv4 nat implementation.

    • My router/stateful firewall will still act as the gateway to my internal network even with ipv6. All traffic flows though there and I can setup firewall rules as to what I'll allow in/out of the wan/lan ports. Nothing on the 'inside' of that router really needs to run a firewall. They can't get out without going though the router even with a 'public' address.

    • by sjames ( 1099 )

      A simple firewall rule will provide all of the security NAT would provide and with a lower load on the firewall.

      Just enable connection tracking, accept incoming related packets and drop the rest.

  • Damn kids. (Score:5, Funny)

    by AnotherBlackHat ( 265897 ) on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:09AM (#50033027) Homepage

    Get off my internet!

  • Seriously, the only way that we are going to move to ipv6 is when being denied ipv4. The good news is that most are ready. Ideally, a large isp will decide to drop the ipv4 section and see how it goes.
  • As usual, US can get unused resources [ IPs ] from where there's a lot available. E.g. from Iraq.
  • (Adjusts Aluminum Foil Deflector Beanie to block out the Bilderberg mind-control rays)

    THEY don't want IPv6 implemented, because IPv6 easily ensures that everyone and their evil twin can have a fully-accessible IP address, allowing them to directly communicate with each other without paying extra rent to the ISP for a "server" or "special" (routable) IPv4 address.

    If users' systems can directly communicate with each other, there's far less need for centralized sites for everything where it can be controlled

    • I partly agree, though I suspect it is more the difficultly of differentiating business and consumer internet products with IPv6. Currently the business solutions gets to have IP adresses and servers, and consumers does not.

  • by jcr ( 53032 ) <[moc.cam] [ta] [rcj]> on Thursday July 02, 2015 @10:59AM (#50033575) Journal

    Every couple of weeks or so, I turn off V4 to see what happens. /. is one of the sites that I can't reach when I do.

    -jcr

  • Look at the massive amount of IPs that Amazon and Microsoft use for their cloud solutions. If AWS actually supported IPv6 properly, people could start migrating. Last I checked, Amazon didn't even offer IPv6 as an option for their DNS services.

    ISPs are starting to move on IPv6, and now we need the big hosting companies to step up. Today, that's mostly cloud providers.

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