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[AfriNIC-rpd] AS4 / 32bit ASN's

Andrew Alston aa at
Fri Jan 16 21:43:43 UTC 2009

Comments in Line....

-----Original Message-----
From: rpd-bounces at on behalf of Ronald Nsubuga
Sent: Fri 1/16/2009 12:48 PM
To: AfriNIC Resource Policy Discussion List
Subject: Re: [AfriNIC-rpd] AS4 / 32bit ASN's
> Hello Andrew,

> I think it clearly states that as of 1st January 2009 if your DON'T
> indicate OR specifically request for a 2-byte only AS then AfriNIC
> will automatically give you a 4-byte ASN.

Agreed, thats what it states, and I believe its a very bad policy adopted across the board by all the RIR's, however, its adopted, so I'm not gonna push to have it removed... I just want a warning added to the ASN application documents.

<snip old stuff> 

> This is true may be it's an opportunity to the AfriNIC region to
> revise the policy OR obsolete it BUT if that is not done the policy is
> valid and will be implemented that way unless when we revise the
> transition mechanism between the two of which am sure what about the
> procedure.

Again, no disagreement, let the policy stand, but as stated above, I propose we place a warning on the ASN application documents for at least the next 6 to 12 months that clearly states "By default you will get a 32bit ASN, you probably can't use this right now, if you want to actively use your new ASN for transit and peering in the next few months, you should almost definitely specify that you want a 16bit ASN" 

> From the vendors point of view they are working on having it
> implemented in all platforms hopefully by 2010 will have something on
> the table as long as it's implemented in the widely used equipment.

This is the problem - its NOT implemented in the widely used equipment, FAR FAR FAR from it, I was asking around today as a matter of interest as to how many of the various players I deal with that peer at various exchanges around the world could actually neighbor to a 32bit ASN, I think of the 30 people I asked, I found two people... both were running latest code...  

I'm VERY worried that people are going to be applying for ASN's, not quite understanding this whole 32bit/16bit ASN scenario as they are new to BGP and new to the whole game, and get handed 32bit ASN's by default which a.) they cannot use on their own equipment unless its absolutely cutting edge (and even most of that doesnt yet support this) or b.) if they are lucky enough to HAVE equipment that supports 32bit ASN's will find that there is no one out there that can neighbor with them for peering or transit!

I'm not asking that we revoke the policy, that would be contrary to what every other RIR is doing, I'm asking for a warning, which by the way RIPE has also put on their documents according to someone I spoke to there today.

Any comments/thoughts?

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