[e2e] queriable networks

Dave Crocker dhc2 at dcrocker.net
Sat Dec 3 23:15:44 PST 2005

> One place where I depart from a common view of the end to end argument is
>  that there are times when it makes sense to actively enquire of the 
> network and expect the network to make a response that characterizes 
> itself.


(I've changed the subject line, since I think your comment is both
interesting and independent of the core simple-vs-complex network
infrastructure issue that I raised.  I don't see any reason a simple network
would be prevented from answering queries.)

I have two reactions to your comment.

One is: I don't see that having a network be queriable (queryable?
querulous?) as automatically running against end-to-end design or, as I said 
above, simple infrastructure. I'd argue that traceroute is a long-standing 
example of such a query, along with pathmtu, and they do not seem to offend 
anyone excessively.

The second is:  what "network" would be getting characterized? Given that we
do inter-networking, how can an arbitrarily long series of
independently-administered networks (between sender and receiver) -- with
alternate paths and different intermediate networks available --
characterize itself?  (One might almost thing that end-to-end QOS over the
open Internet would be difficult to provide...)

So, it seems straightforward to get the "next" network or the next AS to say
something about itself, but I thought we were rather a long way from getting
multi-vendor, multi-administration, end-to-end homogeneity (or


Dave Crocker
Brandenburg InternetWorking

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