Feeds

Bankrupt Borders flogs 65,536 IP addresses at $12 a pop

Scarce network numbers offloaded to healthcare biz

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The bankrupt bookseller Borders wants to sell its stash of 65,536 IP addresses to healthcare software vendor Cerner for $12 per address.

The bust high street chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February, and has been selling off its assets to pay its creditors ever since. The address sale is one of its last assets to be disposed of.

Cerner has agreed to pay $786,432 for the rights to a /16 block of IPv4 addresses, or $12 per address, according to a New York bankruptcy court filing. It's believed to be only the second time ever a batch of IP addresses has been sold in this way, and sets a new high in terms of price.

The software biz was the highest bidder among thousands to be contacted by the asset broker StreamBank, including ISPs, domain registries and other potential buyers, according to the filing. The lowest bid was $1.50 per address, the filing states.

IPv4 addresses are a rapidly dwindling commodity and some believe the period while the internet transitions to IPv6, with all the cost and complexity that entails, is creating a secondary market for legacy address delegations.

ICANN distributed the last big chunks of available IPv4 addresses to the five continental Regional Internet Registries earlier this year. The RIRs in turn are running out of supplies to allocate to ISPs and other network operators.

The Borders deal is believed to be the second publicly announced IPv4 sale, following Nortel's sale of $7.5m worth of addresses to Microsoft in March this year.

Such transfers are controversial, due to the fact that IP addresses, unlike domain names, are not generally considered property that can be traded on the secondary market.

Following the Nortel-Microsoft deal, ARIN, the regional IP address registry for North America, entered into an after-the-fact contract with Microsoft, tacitly acknowledging the sale.

A website launched in April hopes to allow companies to trade IPv4 addresses on the open market.

Borders' bankruptcy filing states that the purchase agreement with Cerner is subject to "consent by ARIN", explaining: "This will likely entail ARIN’s approval of Cerner based on a reasonable demonstration of a need for the addresses."

"While the debtors believe that this court has the authority to authorize the sale of the internet addresses over any such objection by ARIN, the [internet address] sale contains a condition of ARIN’s consent and the proposed order incorporates various protections of ARIN’s rights, which moots any need to consider any of these issues," the filing states.

The bankruptcy court has set a hearing date of 20 December to approve the sale. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
YOU are the threat: True confessions of real-life sysadmins
Who will save the systems from the men and women who save the systems from you?
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Ofcom snatches 700MHz off digital telly, hands it to mobile data providers
Hungry mobe'n'slab-waving Blighty swallows spectrum
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.