[discuss] So-called alternate roots

Michel Gauthier mg at telepresse.com
Sat Jan 4 03:45:16 UTC 2014

At 01:59 04/01/2014, Brian E Carpenter wrote:
> > The people in charge (ICANN) state the "policy currently followed in
> > administering the authoritative root of the Domain Name System"
> > "provides a facility for future extensions that accommodates the
> > possibility of safely deploying multiple roots on the public Internet"
> > as "ultimately there may be better architectures for getting the job
> > done where the need for a single, authoritative root will not be an issue".
> >
> > http://www.icann.org/en/about/unique-authoritative-root


I can only repeat what I wrote to Andrew, i.e. to consider the 
published and enforced policy of ICANN which is actually and - at 
least currently - in charge and whishes through the Sao Paulo meeting 
to become "MS globalized" together with the IANA, i.e. either under 
the augmented control of the US Gov as many think, or on the 
countrary outside of its control as others hope.

Please understand. You and ICANN oppose on the key point for the 
world of multiple root technical and political competitions. The 
issue is worth billions as documented yesterday by Steve Crocker and 
others. Why would the world trust any of you? In order to restore 
trust, the best is probably to ask the opinion and demonstrated 
management of "neutral" technicians belongingi to ITU, ISO or a new 
World Dedicated Organization?

I am monitoring the Internet technical and political governance for 
long enough to be perfectly aware of the arguments involved and 
community tests that have been actually performed, whith which 
results. When you say ...

>This isn't the first time people have wished to rescind the laws
>of mathematics. If a name space is to be unambiguous it must
>have a single logical root and that is not going to change, even
>ultimately. There could be other implementation techniques that
>would hide the single root from view, although I can't see why
>that would be an advantage.
>(That kind of solution, which I investigated at a very abstract
>level a few years ago, requires independent allocation engines
>to communicate with each other to either deny an allocation
>request or to guarantee that it's unique. Although that doesn't
>require a single engine to act as the root, it does require the
>entire set of allocators to communicate with each other. That's
>a lot of complexity for no obvious advantage.)

... this makes no sense to me, may be because you position yourself 
"at a very abstract level" while ICANN states the countrary at a very 
practical one, in very clear terms. So, being only a news person I 
can only report that ICANN and IETF leaders oppose on what is 
definitly the political and technical main internet issue for the users.

ICANN responds to you:

"It should be noted that the original design of the DNS provides a 
facility for future extensions that accommodates the possibility of 
safely deploying multiple roots on the public Internet for 
experimental and other purposes. As noted in 
<http://www.rfc-editor.org/rfc/rfc1034.txt>RFC 1034, the DNS includes 
a "class" tag on each resource record, which allows resource records 
of different classes to be distinguished even though they are 
commingled on the public Internet. For resource records within the 
authoritative root-server system, this class tag is set to "IN"; 
other values have been standardized for particular uses, including 
255 possible values designated for "private use" that are
particularly suited to experimentation

"As described in a recent proposal within the 
this "class" facility allows an alternate DNS namespace to be 
operated from different root servers in a manner that does not 
interfere with the stable operation of the existing authoritative 
root-server system. To take advantage of this facility, it should be 
noted, requires the use of client or applications software developed 
for the alternate namespace (presumably deployed after responsible 
testing), rather than the existing software that has been developed 
to interoperate with the authoritative root. Those who operate 
alternate roots for global commercial purposes, however, have not 
followed this course.

"In an ever-evolving Internet, ultimately there may be better 
architectures for getting the job done where the need for a single, 
authoritative root will not be an issue. But that is not the case 
today. And the transition to such an architecture, should it emerge, 
would require community-based approaches. In the interim, responsible 
experimentation should be encouraged, but it should not be done in a 
manner that affects those who do not consent after being informed of 
the character of the experiment."

Questions to everyone:

1. is RFC 1034 correctly understood by ICANN?

2. which responsible experimentation has ICANN fostered in 12 years?

3. It seems there is a subtile difference between:

3.1. the concept of "alternate root" (singular) which is opposed on 
mathematical grounds that everyone can understand (two versions of 
the same hierarchy that can pollute one another). This is what you, 
Vittorio and Nathalie are discussing. I am not interested in this 
ICANN/status-quo smokescreen issue we all know the no-interest 
cons/pros by heart.

3.2. the DNS architecture conceived to support a multiplicity of 
fully separated "alternate roots" (plural) each under its separate 
adminstration, rules, rates, purposes, AoC, etc. As there are 
thousands private ones.

ICANN and IETF should clarify this terminology before Sao Paulo as 
there are several "alternate root" (singular) administrators 
(plural). and quite a few of private/public "alternate roots"A press 
release would be enough.

3.3. what is the situation of the Chinese DNS? How the i-DNs plug-in 
qualifies? As an alternate-version of the ICANN/NTIA class, as an 
alternate root among the few roots, or as an alternate DNS?

4. ICANN has sold the exclusive uses of Internet TLD names without 
specifying it was only for the "ICANN/NTIA" ("IN") class. What does 
prevent anyone to set-up a "private-use class" global name space, 
supporting the same and more or less TLDs as/than those of the 
ICANN/NTIA class, that anyone using a "client or applications 
software" also supporting that [private-use class] namespace" may 
resolve? Should not inter-root administrators governance to be set-up 
to avoid confusions, discuss IP issues, and foster coopetition be 
part of the IG? It seems that this has a technical governance part, 
from what you say?

5. There are on-going rumor about the discussion in Sao Paulo of 
specialized (experimental) classes, in particular in the "IoT" area 
where Fadi Chehade would like to strike anIANA deal with GS1, as it 
is permitted by the one you explained you signed for the IETF.

It is important to realize that everyone want to know who is leading 
the show and to where. There is a meeting that has been agreed 
between ICANN and Brazil. It seems its preparation boils down to an 
1NET/LOG cooking. LOG does not respond. ICANN and I*society disagree.

Not easy to understand how corporate users and entrepreneurs should 
consider all this, and what they should possibly participate or 
alternatively proceed.

5. So the last question for the day is : is there someone who knows 
where all this is leading to? Is there anyone in the Internet Cockpit?

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://1net-mail.1net.org/pipermail/discuss/attachments/20140104/b3c7dfd7/attachment.html>

More information about the discuss mailing list