ARIN-prop-307: Remove Barrier to BGP Uptake in ASN Policy

Date: 11 March 2022

Proposal Originator: Robert Seastrom

Problem Statement:

The current requirements for getting an ASN have resulted in confusion particularly for new entrants who have their hands more than full with the mechanics of getting BGP up and running.

Four octet (32 bit) ASNs were defined in May 2007 in RFC 4893. It has taken several years for routing equipment in general use to catch up, but today 32 bit ASNs are generally accepted and it is rare that an organization which has been issued a 32 bit ASN comes back to ARIN and says they need a 16 bit ASN instead.

The austerity measure of requiring extensive documentation to get an ASN is left over from the days of 16 bit ASNs (total space 65000). It is no longer appropriate and we should align our conservation requirements with those found in other 32-bit spaces (total space four billion). Consider:

  • A /32 of IPv6 space is the default allocation and will be assigned to any ISP that requests it.

  • Temporary assignment of a /32 of IPv4 space can be acquired on most residential ISPs by issuing a DHCP request.

We propose making issuance of the first 32 bit ASN for any ORGID (or each site for organizations that have number resources under multiple discrete networks policy) be pro-forma upon request. If an org’s technical people think they need a public ASN, they probably do!

Vetting as embodied in existing policy or evolved in ARIN-2021-3 should be reserved for those requesting more than one ASN per organization or discrete network.

Note that this proposal is non-interfering with ARIN-2021-3 which is intended to make the NRPM more understandable.

Policy statement:

Insert the following paragraph at the beginning of section 5:

Any organization may be issued a single four-octet (32 bit) Autonomous Systen Number (ASN) upon request. Organizations that have space issued under Multiple Discrete Networks policy may be issued a four-octet (32 bit) ASN per discrete network upon request.

Replace the introductory sentence:

There are a limited number of available Autonomous System Numbers (AS Numbers), therefore, it is important to determine which sites require unique AS Numbers and which do not.


Issuance of ASNs outside of the scope outlined above is subject to the following constraints:

Timetable for implementation: Immediate