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[rpd] proposed policy: reservation of resources for IXPs

Noah Maina mainanoa at
Wed Oct 29 15:02:59 UTC 2014

+++1 i am fully behind this one.


On 29 Oct 2014 17:07, "Frank Habicht" <geier at> wrote:

> Hello all,
> please find this proposed policy, which we (3 co-authors) have submitted to
> the pdpwg last week:
> Resource Reservation for Internet Exchange Points
> Author(s):
> a) Frank Habicht, Tanzania Internet Exchange
> b) Michuki Mwangi, Internet Society/KIXP
> c) Nishal Goburdhan, Packet Clearing House/JINX
> 1) Summary of the Problem being addressed by this proposal
> This policy reserves IPv4 and 2-byte ASNs resources for public Internet
> Exchange Points (IXPs) in the African region, ensuring that there would be
> discrete IPv4 resources to allow the establishment and growth of future
> IXPs.
> 2) Summary of How this Proposal Addresses the Problem
> This policy requests AfriNIC to reserve, and publish IPv4 resources, and
> 2-byte ASNs for use by IXPs only.
> 3) Proposal
> 3.1 Introduction
> It is widely considered that Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) are one of the
> critical elements needed for Internet economies to develop. Africa is still
> in the process of developing these, and is, at the same time, faced with
> the imminent exhaustion of its IPv4 resources. Not having IPv4 addresses to
> grow, or start new, IXPs would create unnecessary and unneeded routing
> complexity for Internet connected networks, looking to peer at IXPs to
> further their network scope. AfriNIC already has an existing policy to make
> allocations to IXPs [1], but that policy does not specifically reserve IPV4
> space to ensure that there will be such, for future IXPs to grow and
> develop. Additionally, this policy reserves a set of 2-byte ASNs for use by
> IXPs for use at IXP BGP Route Servers.
> 3.2 Distinction between IXP peering and management networks
> We distinguish between two kinds of IP address resources needed and used at
> IXPs. An IXP peering LAN is the contiguous network address block that the
> IXP would use to assign unique IP addresses to each peering member, for
> each peering participant to exchange network traffic across the shared
> peering infrastructure. Best practice has the IXP peering LAN *not* being
> visible in a view of the global routing table, among other things to reduce
> the attack vectors for ISP border routers via the IXP.
> >From a network identification, monitoring and analysis perspective, it is
> thus desirable, that the "peering LAN" space be provided from a contiguous
> block. The IXP management LAN is the management network that the IXP uses
> to provision services at the IXP, like monitoring, statistics, mail, ticket
> systems, provisioning of transit to DNS Roots, etc.
> Management networks, are meant to be reachable globally, for instance to
> publish data and allow remote access for common good network infrastructure
> (such as root and TLD DNS servers) and research projects.
> 3.3 BGP Route Servers use
> Typically IXPs use BGP route servers to help manage peering sessions
> between different participants. The route servers implement IXP routing
> policy in the form of BGP communities, typically in the form of A:B, where
> A,B represent A=IXP BGP route server and B=participant ASN. Current BGP
> implementations utilise 6 bytes for the extended community attribute
> [RFC5668]. Therefore, an IXP with a 4-byte ASN in use at its route server
> would not be able to successfully implement the A:B BGP community mapping,
> if an IXP participant has a 4-byte ASN. This situation is likely to be
> experienced by more IXPs, as additional 4-byte ASNs are allocated through
> the current AfriNIC process.
> If, IXP route server communities include the IXP ASN and the peer's ASN
> (expected to be 4-byte), and a total of only 6 bytes are available, it
> follows that IXP route servers ASN could not be longer than a 2-byte ASN.
> 3.4 Proposal
> To ensure that there are sufficient resources for IXPs to develop, this
> policy proposes that AfriNIC reserve IPv4 addresses for IXP peering LANs
> out of an address block marked particularly, and exclusively, for IXP
> peering LAN use. Assignments for IXP peering LANs must be from one
> dedicated block, published as such by AfriNIC. Assignments for IXP
> management addresses should NOT be provided from the same block as the IXP
> peering LANs.
> It is proposed that a /16 block be reserved for future requirements for IXP
> peering LANs in the AfriNIC service region, and that AfriNIC publish this
> block as such.
> It is further proposed to reserve the equivalent of an additional /16 block
> for IXP management prefixes, separate from the peering LANs. It is proposed
> that AfriNIC reserves a block of 2-byte ASNs for use in BGP route servers
> at IXPs in the AfriNIC service region.
> The number of ASNs to be reserved should be the larger of 114, or half of
> the remaining 2-byte ASNs within AfriNIC's block at the date of
> ratification of this policy.
> AfriNIC will allocate these resources on a first come first served basis.
> 3.5 Evaluation criteria
> This policy does not suggest new evaluation criteria for what determines a
> valid IXP.
> 4.0 References
> [1] AfriNIC Policy for End User Assignments - AFPUB-2006-GEN-001
> Sections 5)
> and 6)
> Note: proposal also available at
> Regards,
> Frank
> _______________________________________________
> rpd mailing list
> rpd at
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