IPcalypse

The end is near. In the foreseeable future there will be no more unallocated IPv4 addresses left. Time to move to IPv6

IP addresses are distributed hierarchically. At the top there is IANA. Below IANA there are five regional distribution organizations, called RIRs. Below the RIRs there are numerous ISPs that delegate IP addresses to the actual users.

On january 31st 2011 IANA allocated two /8 blocks of IPv4 to APNIC triggering the Exhaustion Phase. This phase, the allocation of the last 5 /8 blocks one to each RIR, was announced on february 3rd 2011. This depletes the IANA IPv4 address pool.

This does not mean the IPcalypse has arrived, it only means the top of the hierarchy is out of addresses. The RIR level will still have IPv4 addresses to distribute to the ISPs, but this supply will quickly run out. Estimates vary between 3 months and 3 years.

The five RIR regions are:

 

The number of unallocated IP blocks (1 block is 256 addresses) at the RIRs is as follows:

RIR# free IPv4 /24 blocksIPcalypse dateDays left
Afrinic220,631Nov 11, 20191843 days
APNIC72,640Apr 15, 2011-1289 days
ARIN401,419Aug 27, 2013-424 days
LACNIC175,524May 27, 2015214 days
RIPE68,474Sep 14, 2012-771 days

As you can see parts of the world will run out of addresses before others.

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