A survey of identifier-locator split addressing architectures

Miika Komu, Mohit Sethi*, Nicklas Beijar

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleScientificpeer-review

    9 Citations (Scopus)
    149 Downloads (Pure)


    The TCP/IP architecture of the Internet was originally designed around the contemporary restrictions of large computers that were difficult to move around. However, electronics followed Moore's law, resulting in cheaper and smaller electronics for consumers, and portable devices, such as laptops and cellular phones, became pervasive. Consequently, the original restriction on static hosts was no longer true even though is still present in the design of the TCP/IP networking stack. The TCP/IP stack remains still constrained by its original design, which was effectively a design compromise to make the addressing model simpler. As TCP connections are created based on the same addresses used by the underlying network layer, the connections break when the address changes or is removed. Thus, the TCP/IP architecture is challenged in the temporal dimension of addressing as it was designed to assume stable addresses. This is not only problematic from the viewpoint of initial connectivity but also critical in sustaining of active data flows. In this paper, we first outline the challenges related to the inflexible nature of the TCP/IP architecture resulting from the fact that the same namespace is shared between the transport and network layers. We then discuss existing solutions for these challenges that arise from the transient nature of addresses in the TCP/IP architecture. Finally, we perform a qualitative analysis of the solutions discussed in the paper.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)25-42
    Number of pages18
    JournalComputer Science Review
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2015
    MoE publication typeA2 Review article in a scientific journal


    • Addressing models
    • Identifier-locator split
    • Internet architecture
    • Internet transparency
    • Mobility
    • Multihoming
    • Namespace
    • Renumbering
    • TCP/IP stack

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