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Multicast - the Sleeping Giant

It has been said, by more than a few of my close friends, that I can talk endlessly about IP multicast. It has fascinated me since I first heard of it back in the mid-1990s. My exposure has been pretty deep.

In the early pages of this book - Section 1.2 to be exact - I touched on some of the early factors that piqued my interest. But I want to take a voyage into multicast and, looking into the crystal ball, more specifically focus around what I think IP multicast can bring, and how tantalizingly near with the technology, yet so far culturally we are from bringing that to be possible.

Multicast Recap

Multicast came about when Steve Deering - lead designer of IPv6 - postulated IP multicast extensions in the IETF RFC966.[1]

This is not the right book for a detailed breakdown of IP and IP classes, so I will either assume you know or can otherwise research this elsewhere. Here I want to try to create a simple picture of multicast and, more important, the challenges it faces in technical deployment for a CDN.

  • [1] https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc966 Content Delivery Networks: Fundamentals, Design, and Evolution, First Edition. Dom Robinson.© 2017 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Published 2017 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
 
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