November 27, 2023

On September 4, 2023, Jeroen Lauwers of A2B Internet, and Tore Anderson of Redpill Linpro submitted the policy proposal “Add AGGREGATED-BY-LIR status for IPv4 PA assignments” to the RIPE community. This proposal seeks to standardize the application of the RIPE policy across all internet resources, regardless of status and decrease the workload for LIRs when registering their IPv4 resource assignments.

RIPE policy currently dictates that an LIR needs to register each IPv4 assignment on an individual basis, with exception to addresses that are “used solely for the connection of an End User to a service provider (e.g. point-to-point links)”. These assignments are then shown as part of the service provider’s infrastructure. This exception is sometimes applied to addresses that are not only used to establish a connection between an End User and their service provider, to avoid registering many small assignments.  Thus, if an LIR is completely compliant with the RIPE policy, the amount of labor needed to maintain their organization’s account is high.

The proposal will add a status for IPv4 address space called “AGGREGATED-BY-LIR” which will allow LIRs to create one INETNUM object to represent multiple IPv4 assignments that have the same contact information and purpose. Thus, LIR compliance with RIPE policy will increase as other uses for IPv4 assignments are covered by the new status. The IPv4 policy for “AGGREGATED-BY-LIR” would mimic the IPv6 policy for the status of the same name. However, the policy will not require the use of the “assignment-size” attribute as it is mainly used to calculate an LIR’s HD-ratio (which is not currently utilized for IPv4 address space). 

The discussion phase for this proposal lasted from September 4, 2023, to October 3, 2023, during which concerns were raised and community support was found. One concern was that the requirement for the “assignment-size” attribute is not included which leaves the assignment boundary between end-users to be unpublicized. Therefore, if someone is receiving spam from a specific IP address, they are not able to block the whole assignment the IP comes from, and not the other parts of the aggregation assigned to other users. Another concern is that the End-Users of these assignments will be anonymous as the contact information for each aggregation will be the LIR’s. These concerns have raised questions around the importance of this information to the RIPE community and the operation of the RIPE database as the provision of this information seems to already be lacking. Despite these concerns, most of the community seem to support this proposal.

RIPE determined that these concerns did not require a new discussion phase, and a proposal document was drafted on October 3, 2023. RIPE is now on to the review phase as of October 27, 2023. 

This proposal will be discussed at the RIPE 87 conference in Rome, Italy on November 29, 2023. A Live Stream is available; to join the conversation online, free registration is available. Other topics to be discussed include the purpose of IPv4 assignment registration, the future of IPv6 policy, and updates from RIPE registration services, RIPE policy, and NRO NC / ICANN ASO AC.