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Posts from June 2007

ARIN provides the latest word that we need to move to IPv6... will anyone heed the warning? (Does anyone care?)

NetworkWorld is running an article today that talks about the announcement from ARIN (the American Registry for Internet Numbers) of the ARIN Board resolution calling upon ARIN to no longer be "neutral" in the IPv4 vs IPv6 space and instead work to actively encourage migration to IPv6.

For those not aware, ARIN is a non-profit organization that allocates IP addresses within North America and is one of the five Regional Internet Registries that allocate IP addresses on behalf of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA)

Think of it this way... let's say you start a business and want to get an Internet connection where you can run your own web server.  You need a public IP address, so you are going to contact an Internet Service Provider (ISP), set up service, get an address, etc., etc.  If you are in North America, the public IP address you are going to get will have been allocated to your ISP by ARIN.  ARIN, in turn, was given blocks of IP addresses to give out by IANA, who is ultimately responsible for all IP addresses.  So it looks something like this:

IANA -> ARIN (and the other RIRs) -> ISPs -> You

(and yes, where I said "ISPs", there may in fact be multiple levels of ISPs and other intermediary registries giving out addresses - I'm trying to make this simple, okay?)

Until now, ARIN and the other RIRs have generally been fairly neutral in the IPv4 versus IPv6 debate and have not shown a preference in allocation, but this announcement from ARIN shows the first signs of change.  It starts with this warning:

The available IPv4 resource pool has now been reduced to the point that ARIN is compelled to advise the Internet community that migration to IPv6 is necessary for any applications that require ongoing availability from ARIN of contiguous IP number resources.

And here is the key part of the Board resolution:

BE IT RESOLVED, that this Board of Trustees hereby advises the Internet community that migration to IPv6 numbering resources is necessary for any applications which require ongoing availability from ARIN of contiguous IP numbering resources; and,

BE IT ORDERED, that this Board of Trustees hereby directs ARIN staff to take any and all measures necessary to assure veracity of applications to ARIN for IPv4 numbering resources; and,

BE IT RESOLVED, that this Board of Trustees hereby requests the ARIN Advisory Council to consider Internet Numbering Resource Policy changes advisable to encourage migration to IPv6 numbering resources where possible.

The net of it is that we can expect that ARIN (and undoubtedly the other RIRs) will make it increasingly harder for ISPs to obtain IPv4 address blocks and will be scrutinizing requests... while it will be basically wide open for IPv6 allocation.

So how long do we have?

If you read Jeff Doyle's blog (an excellent one on IPv6 issues),  he believes that IANA will stop IPv4 allocations in late 2008 or early 2009.  Given that RIRs have existing pools of IPv4 addresses to allocate, IPv4 addresses may continue to be available through 2009 or 2010.

2009?  2010?

That's not that far out, when you think about it.  Given that we've been talking about IPv6 for now most of 20 years, the date does indeed seem to be looming.

The real question to me, though, is simply this - will anyone care?

Will anyone heed these and the other warnings and start the migration to IPv6?  Or will we just keep going along as we are until we hit the real bump in the road and it becomes a crisis?

Were I a betting man, my money would be on the "crisis" scenario.



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Skype raises public chat limits to 150 - but why do I see 200 in a chat room?

Today Skype announced that you could now have up to 150 people in a public chat session. They had quietly rolled this out a bit ago, but I only noticed then because I monitor and participate in a couple of Skype public chats that focus on new releases/features of Skype and development issues.

imageThere does, though, seem to be a continuing puzzle around discrepancies regarding the actual limits.  Ask any 4 people in a Skype public chat to type "/info" on the command line and relay the result... and you'll probably get four very different answers.  I just did that in one public chat (Update: it was the "Skype Developer community public chat") and, as shown in the graphic, showed a total of 201 people in a chat session... with the limit theoretically being 150!  Someone else in the chat did the same command and showed 122 people.  At various times in the past, we've done similar tests and found that there's a very wide range of numbers.

One has to wonder... is this something about the peer-to-peer "cloud" that makes up the Skype infrastructure?  Is this a convergence issue?  i.e. over time the numbers will converge to a common number as the p2p cloud updates?

Very strange.

Update: A contact at Skype indicates that this is a known bug where the count may not reflect people who have left the chat.

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New Skype public chat about Twitter <-> Skype integration

For those who read my previous post about the ability to now post to Twitter from within Skype, Antoine "Ants" Bertout from Skype created a new Skype public chat to facilitate discussion around how Skype and Twitter could be integrated.  Anyone interested who has Skype 3.x is welcome to join by following the link below: 

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Sending messages to Twitter from Skype - and the challenge of knowing where to post some things as worlds collide

Some of you reading this may be interested in the article on my Disruptive Conversations blog about a new service that lets you update Twitter from within Skype. 

The article itself is an example of the challenge I'm increasingly finding with some things falling into the "grey area" between my two main blogs.  This blog covers telephony, VoIP, etc., while Disruptive Conversations covers the "social media" of blogs, podcasts, etc.  The lines are pretty clear in some cases.

But the challenge is that the lines continue to blur.... communication that used to take place by phone is moving increasingly online and very often to "social networking sites" like Facebook, Twitter and friends... which I have primarily been discussing over on DisCon. Yet in the case of this post I just made, the integration was with Skype, a tool I normally discuss over here on Disruptive Telephony.  I wound up posting it over there... but I just as easily could have posted it here. 

I've toyed with cross-posting some articles into both places. It would be trivial to do since I use Windows Live Writer now for all my blogging.  The act of cross-posting is as simple as switching the weblog menu to a different weblog, updating the categories for the new blog and hitting "Publish".  But I've avoided that for a while primarily just to have one place for an article to live.  Am I being too much of a purist?  The blogs are designed with two different audiences in mind.  There may not be as much cross-over.  Or should I post in one and put a quick link like I did here in the other?

Thoughts?  Suggestions?

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