legacy /8

Mark Smith nanog at 85d5b20a518b8f6864949bd940457dc124746ddc.nosense.org
Sun Apr 4 23:23:41 CDT 2010

On Sun, 04 Apr 2010 20:01:36 -0700
joel jaeggli <joelja at bogus.com> wrote:

> On 4/3/2010 6:15 PM, Mark Smith wrote:
> > Ever used IPX or Appletalk? If you haven't, then you don't know how
> > simple and capable networking can be. And those protocols were designed
> > more than 20 years ago, yet they're still more capable than IPv4.
> Zing, and there you have it! The hourglass is thin in the middle. One of 
> if not the defining propteries of the ip protocol is what it doesn't do, 
> which is virtually everything.

Well since it has become the only layer 3 protocol, shouldn't it be
good enough or made good enough to do everything that's been done in the
past and proven useful?

IPv4 didn't succeed because it was significantly better than IPX or
Appletalk. IPX has 32 bit network numbers (and 48 bit node addresses),
so as a protocol it could have scaled to the Internet's size better than
IPv4 has. However, the network effect kicked in - the Internet talks
IPv4, so that's what people started running. People eventually seem to
be rational about efficiency and said, "we're always going to have to
run IPv4 because we always want to be connected to the Internet, so lets
try to stop running multiple protocols that are nearly functionally
equivalent." So Novell ported their services operating over TCP/IP, and
Apple did the same. The thing that IPX and Appletalk did better than
IPv4 was make networking much more convenient to operate. That was lost
when they were abandoned. IPv6 will (hopefully) help bring them back.


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