195: Map of the Internet

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Map of the Internet
For the IPv6 map just imagine the XP default desktop picture.
Title text: For the IPv6 map just imagine the XP default desktop picture.


On the map, all allocated IPv4 address blocks (as of 2006) are shown using a fractal mapping. (The Hilbert curve is used: the pattern is demonstrated at the bottom of the image.) In February 2011, the final remaining IPv4 blocks were allocated to the Regional Internet registries, and so today there would no longer be any green spaces outside of Class E addresses (above 240 through 255, excluding the Broadcast address of

In the early 1990s, corporations and governments could register an entire class A segment (one 256th of the total space), but later it was divided into smaller parts because of a lack of space.

This leads to the title text, which mentions IPv6. This protocol has so many addresses that only a swarm of nanobots could exhaust them. The default desktop picture in Windows XP is a green landscape, and the joke is that since barely any of the addresses are allocated yet, the IPv6 map would just be a green landscape. There are large (enough to be visible) blocks of IPv6 space that have been allocated for special purposes and to RIRs. However, the amount of IPv6 space allocated to end users is only a tiny portion of that.

Later, Randall actually drew some "real" maps of the Internet, or at least its online Communities (see 256: Online Communities and 802: Online Communities 2).

A large number of updated Hilbert curve maps inspired by this comic have been created. Many also use data obtained by pinging IP addresses to see which addresses are accessible. Here are maps with images from 2003-2006, 2007 (which has a few different maps), 2009 (showing country codes), 2010, 2012 (collected by the Carna Botnet), a 2006-2014 animation, 2018, and 2023.


Map of the Internet The IPv4 Space, 2006 This chart shows the IP address space on a plane using a fractal mapping which preserves grouping--any consecutive string of IPs will translate to a single, compact, contiguous region on the map. Each of the 256 numbered blocks represents one 8 subnet (containing all IPs that start with that number). The upper left section shows the blocks sold directly to corporations and goverments in the 1990's before the RIRs took over allocation.
Diagram showing IP ownership:
0: Local
1-2: Unallocated
3: General Electric
5: Unallocated
6: Army AISC
7: Unallocated
9: IBM
10: VPNs
11: DoD Intel
12: Bell Labs
13: Xerox
14: Public data nets
15: HP
16: DEC
17: Apple
18: MIT
19: Ford
20: CSC
22: DISA
23: Unallocated
24: Cable TV
25: UK MoD
26: DISA
27: Unallocated
28: DSI
29-30: DISA
31: Unallocated
33: DLA
34: Halliburton
35: Merit
36-37: Unallocated
38: PSI
39: Unallocated
40: Eli Lily
42: Unallocated
43: Japan INET
44: HAM Radio
46: BB&N INC
47: Bell North
48: Prudential
49-50: Unallocated
51: UK Social Security
52: duPont
55: Boeing
56: USPS
57: SITA
58-61: Asia-Pacific
62: Europe
63-76: USA & Canada (contains: UUNET, Google, Digg, Slashdot, Ebay, Craigslist, XKCD, Flickr)
77-79: Europe (unused)
80-91: Europe
92-95: Unallocated
96-99: North America
100-120: Unallocated
121-125: Asia-Pacific
126: Japan
127: Loopback
128-132: Various Registrars
133: Japan
134-172: Various Registrars
173-189: Unallocated
188: Various
189-190: Latin America & Caribbean
191-192: Various (contains Private (RFC 1918))
193-195: Europe
196: Africa
197: Unallocated
198: US & Various
199: North America
200-201: Latin America & Caribbean
202-203: Asia-Pacific
204-209: North America (contains Suicide Girls, BoingBoing)
210-211: Asia-Pacific
212-213: Europe
214-215: U.S. Department of Defense
216: North America (Contains Myspace, SomethingAwful)
217: Europe
218-222: Asia-Pacific
223: Unallocated
224-239: Multicast
240-255: Unallocated

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If one ip address was a square of area 100 by 100 ft, this entire map would be 1241 miles across, for a total area of 1.541 million square miles. That's about 41% the area of the United States, the size of a medium-to-large country. The ipv6 map would be half the size of the galaxy. MegaMutant453 (talk) 04:56, 12 November 2022 (UTC)

Why am I in various registrars?

Simply because one of those various registrars is your interwebz provider. Sobsz (talk) 19:55, 21 November 2015 (UTC)

I'd like to see an updated version, 10 years later. I think all the green would be gone. Microbe

He forgot the 172.16-172.31 private block. Way late, I know but I only just noticed. 01:51, 7 July 2017 (UTC)

Since the table is for the first octet only, it's not possible to show the 172.16-172.31 block. Drawing a table big enough is left to you as an exercise. However, he shows Class E addresses (240-255) as "unallocated", which is a bit misleading because routers are required by RFC 1812 to discard packets with these addresses, which are reserved for "future use". 18:21, 15 June 2018 (UTC)

However, is a full class A subnet that is on the same footing as and, yet is labeled "VPNs" in this comic. 21:35, 28 April 2019 (UTC)

i'm sure ip exists somewhere An user who has no account yet (talk) 07:39, 6 September 2023 (UTC)