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Re: [ga] China confirms alternate root for TLDs

On Mon, 6 Mar 2006, Veni Markovski wrote:

Danny and all, perhaps you may wish to take a look at http://english.people.com.cn/200603/03/eng20060303_247684.html for the true information?

Not much actual information at that link, merely a denial without concrete substantiation of what actually is being done.

It's always good to double check such "news" before posting them to the mailing list.

Some of actually went and did better than mere "double" checking. We cranked up DNS tools, like "dig" and sent queries and looked at responses. No plugins were involved and nothing was playing games appending suffixes or rewriting names; we went to the bedrock level, DNS and nothing but DNS.

My own check was somewhat cursory and was replicative of the cheks of others - some of their output is on the Circle-ID thread - but from my own observation I am quite sure that some Chinese servers were, in fact, answering for the purported TLDs.

It was late at night when I did it so I didn't make note of the important little bits, like the "aa" flag - yes, it was dumb of me and sloppy. But the point was that some Chinese name servers did appear to be responding, without error, to queries using the new names.

Perhaps I, and others, were seeing responses containing cached data from some transient experiment? Maybe. But then again maybe not. Perhaps I and the others were simply misinterpreting what we saw - in my case I know that my work was not of scientific quality - but then again our eyes are somewhat familiar with the arcane art of looking at DNS queries and following chains of delegations.

So, my sense is that it does seem like there is rather a solid nugget of truth buried deep within the rumors and concerns.

Now, I would hope that ICANN might actually make an inquiry and publish a highly detailed statement of what, in fact, happened. And I would hope that if China is doing what new.net did that ICANN will publicly apply the same words and phrases of condemnation to China that ICANN did to new.net.

But I doubt that ICANN will make such an inquiry. ICANN did not make an inquiry into how Taiwan munged its own roots a couple of years ago. (You can find the technical details of that buried in the board email archives when I described the details to the board. That is assuming that someone at ICANN has created an archive of board email - It didn't have one when I was on the board.) And yes, Taiwan was very definitely running its own root for a while and admitted it privately and described it, apparently accurately, as an experiment that somebody forgot to turn off.


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