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I have a number of Linux servers (dedicated and VPS) with their own fixed IP addresses.

I would like to be able to acquire a set of long-lived IP addresses that could then be assigned to the servers in a manner of my choosing (and to new servers in the future).

My thought is that this would be a service provided by (major) ISPs - IP addresses that they could route as part of their network ops.

Do such services exist? What are they called

(I realise that I could do this with a dedicated server and some proxy setup, but a service would be better)

Thanks for thoughts!

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

There are none that I'm aware of. I can't help but question why you'd want to do so.

Such a service would have to act as a BINAT between their address range and your own. This would be terribly inefficient, primarily because:

  • Your transit costs would treble. You'd pay for each packet into the service, out of the service and then into you. Vice versa for outbound traffic.
  • Throughput would be low and latency high. Especially if you anticipate relocating frequently and further away from such a provider.

Instead you should really consider:

  • DNS, if used correctly, allows you to renumber with minimal effort. The sting of renumbering is only really an issue for very large and legacy networks. Which doesn't sound like the case.
  • You can obtain IP addresses which are portable between providers. Without becoming an LIR and conducting your own routing. It's called PI space. But it's not without some woes - PI is generally frowned upon because it fractures LIR's allocations and the global routing table.
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Hello Dan, thanks for the fast answer. I agree with you on the doubling of transfer costs and reduction in performance. I will not be able to use DNS, unfortunately. The scenario this is needed for is one in which third parties communicate with me over long periods of time to fixed IP addresses only. – wodow Nov 12 '09 at 13:49
I will look into the Provider-independent addressing! Thank you - this is good info. – wodow Nov 12 '09 at 13:50
What is the reason for 3rd party communication with a fixed address? If for faux-security measures it would be much better to address elsewhere - such as using SSL verification or inbound VPNs. – Dan Carley Nov 12 '09 at 13:55
@wodow: "The scenario this is needed for is one in which third parties communicate with me over long periods of time to fixed IP addresses" Your scenario is incompatible with the real-world Internet. Guess which one is easier to change. – womble Nov 12 '09 at 14:01
@womble: Understood and agreed, but the tide can still be fought! – wodow Nov 12 '09 at 17:03

Your VPS provider should be able to provide you with extra IP addresses if you need them. As far as "long term" goes, nobody can guarantee that you'll have permanent access to any IP space (even if you get your own PI space, those agreements state that you can be required to renumber if the LIR requires it). Don't design your system around requiring static IP addresses, it won't last. Use DNS in the manner in which it was intended.

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This is what domain names are for :)

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