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[AFRINIC-rpd] IPv4 Address Allocation and Assignment proposal

Walubengo J jwalu at
Sat Feb 9 19:35:16 UTC 2013

Hi Owen,

Been planing to get back to you on one 
point.  That the KENET, TENET or the NRENs (National Research and 
Education Networks) model does NOT stop individual universities from from  
applying for IP resources. However, there are very strong (financial) and other incentives for doing so through the NRENs  (I believe around 50% rebate for IP resources).

Further International bandwidth is still expensive in Africa, so most universities would benefit from the economies of scale by pooling together their bandwidth requirements and purchasing the same in  bulk from international markets.  So once you have pooled together on the bandwidth level, it does not hurt to do the same with IP requests.


 From: Owen DeLong <owen at>
To: Walubengo J <jwalu at> 
Cc: Andrew Alston <aa at>; "sm+afrinic at" <sm+afrinic at>; "rpd at" <rpd at> 
Sent: Friday, February 8, 2013 10:29 AM
Subject: Re: [AFRINIC-rpd] IPv4 Address Allocation and Assignment proposal

On Feb 7, 2013, at 22:50 , Walubengo J <jwalu at> wrote:

>As one of the board members, I can assure that I do read widely the posts on this rpd list.  And as you rightly hint, I try hard not to be too liberal with my views.  I believe Board members must ride the delicate path of not being seen as too pre-emptive, biased or exerting undue pressure on the direction the discussions should go. But since you have drawn me out of the woodwork, I cannot resist to share my views on this Policy - particularly because of my affiliation with Academia.
>And straight to the point of ratios. Whether  it is 1:1, 1:3, 1:5 /etc IPs per student/user in a University - this is largely applicable in SA, or middle-income type of economies where No. of students is closely correlated with the expected No. of  PCs/Laptops/IPad/etc.  In sub-saharan africa, I can tell you that the link between No. of students and No. of PCs is largely non-existant (though it may slightly exist in private universities - again where income levels of student communities are higher).
Yes, but, Walu, do you consider that situation desirable, or would you like to see it evolve to be more like you describe SA?

Is there significant harm in making the addressing available in advance to facilitate that evolution?

I work in a public university (which in most sub-saharan countries) would take  over 80% of the total University Student enrollments in a given country. I can tell you for sure that the the No. of PCs in a Public University in a Sub-saharan economy has more to do with the ICT Investment ratios rather than student numbers. In other words what % of the University budget is going into ICT development per year - which translates better to the No. of Labs, IP Devices expected.  Perhaps you may want to review your policy in this light.
This is the kind of thinking that I was referring to when I mentioned to Nii that I don't see the point in using equipment poverty as a reason to preserve address poverty. I agree that both issues need to be addressed. AfriNIC cannot solve the equipment issue, at least not completely or directly, but can solve the address issue. Further, I don't believe this policy would force a university to apply under the ratio criteria. Universities that wanted to could still apply under the existing policy and get less space if they had some reason and desire to do so.

Another point regards the fact that in recent years, Higher Educational Institutions  have the trend of acquiring IPs through their Educational Networks e.g. TENET in  SA, KENET in Kenya, etc.   This trend is being picked up in West Africa and other parts of Africa (e.g.Madagascar).  And So in future, less and and less individual universities may be applying directly to AfriNIC for space.  This should however not stop the policy  - since the same policy would still be useful in informing the Educational Networks on how to approximate IP resource capacities in order to subsequently request from AfriNIC.
IMHO, that's an unfortunate trend that probably indicates that getting space from AfriNIC directly either is, or is perceived to be more difficult than it should be.

Finally, with the continued use of NAT - African Universities  tend to have a bigger problem of announcing their allocated space than perhaps the problem of getting them from AfriNIC :-).  I believe there is  a policy requirement that one should announce a % of their IP space within a given time frame but not sure if this is monitored and/or if there are examples of consequences for not doing this.
IMHO, we should discourage the use of NAT in universities where feasible. NAT is contrary to good security practices and contrary to the principles of a free and open internet.

On other matters that have been discussed:
>*Policy vs Operational Issues: I agree we need to be careful not to use an IP resource policy to address Operational Issues.  If AfrinIC staff and management are taking too long on processing IP resource request, there should be channels to address this e.g. by ensuring AfriNIC reviews or publishes its Service Charter/SLA committement to its membership.
Agreed. I think this policy proposal is intended to resolve a policy issue where AfriNIC staff in its strict application of current policy is making university assignments and allocations unnecessarily difficult. I don't think it is intended to directly address timeliness or other operational concerns. Admittedly, a simplified streamlined policy for allocations and assignments is likely to result in an improvement in response times, but I don't think that is a primary intent of the policy so much as a beneficial second order effect.

*Inter RIR IPv4 Transfers:
>I did agree with the message that hording IPv4 space in the face of emerging IPv6 space is like holding onto a losing stock.    A time is fast approaching when Africa will be boasting of having millions of IPv4 space that is not useful to anyone.  But this reality should trigger us to come up with strategies of increasing usage as opposed to strategies of "selling"  or liquidating the stock.
I think this policy is intended to create increased usage and more effective distribution to entities that should be using the addresses (even if they lack the financial resources to take full advantage at the moment).

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