Standardizing network data

By on 4 Jun 2024

Category: Tech matters

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At FullCtl, we’re working to bring you innovative solutions in network automation. Today, we’d like to share an update on our ARIN community grant project, focusing on two tools we’re developing: PrefixCtl and RegCtl. These tools aim to simplify and standardize the way you manage and interact with registration and prefix data.

Introducing FullCtl

FullCtl is a software development shop specializing in network automation, particularly for interconnection. We’re passionate about creating tools that make network management easier and more efficient. Our team, led by me, Chris Grundemann, and my co-founder Matt ‘Grizz’ Griswold, has over two hundred years of combined experience in this field. We’ve been deeply involved in the networking community for a long time, especially through Network Operator Groups (NOGs) and Regional Internet Registries (RIRs), and we’re excited to give back through this project.

Why we’re here

FullCtl was fortunate to receive a 2023 ARIN Community Grant to develop and publish two important new open-source software tools: PrefixCtl and RegCtl. These tools aim to address some of the common challenges network operators face with registration and prefix data.

What are PrefixCtl and RegCtl?

Together, RegCtl and PrefixCtl are a solution for standardized, normalized, and contextualized Resource Data Access protocol (RDAP) and Route Origin Authorization (ROA) information management. They are separate microservices because we believe in the Unix design philosophy that each tool does one job and does it well.

RegCtl: Standardizing registration data

RegCtl, short for ‘registration control’, is designed to provide reliable, standardized outputs of registration data. This includes RPKI data like IP address and Autonomous System Number (ASN) ROAs, and RDAP / whois information, including ASNs, IP addresses, domain, and entity data from all RIRs.

Why is this important? Because data from different RIRs can vary in format and schema, making it difficult to automate processes and maintain consistency across a global network. RegCtl aims to solve these global inconsistencies by offering a unified data schema, which will be valuable for anyone needing consistent, normalized registration data for their operations.

PrefixCtl: Managing prefix sets

PrefixCtl (pronounced ‘prefix control’) is already up and running. This tool allows you to manage sets of prefixes. Not just ‘prefix-sets’ and ‘AS-sets’ — yes, those too — but PrefixCtl can work with any list of prefixes. It then enriches the dataset by pulling information from multiple sources, including RDAP / whois, Internet Routing Registry (IRR), and routing data.

Complementing RDAP data with additional sources provides more context and makes it easier to answer critical questions about resource responsibility, status, and routing. In addition to this additional context, PrefixCtl also provides an extensible metadata framework and an API for all of the data.

Why build these tools?

Network operators often face issues with the accessibility and consistency of registration data. Different RIRs have slightly different formats, and changes in these databases can break scripts and automated processes. PrefixCtl and RegCtl aim to provide consistent, reliable data sources that can be easily integrated into your (automated) workflows, reducing the time and effort spent managing these datasets.

Current status and next steps

RegCtl is currently in development, with a release planned for Sep-Nov 2024. It will build upon the foundation laid by PrefixCtl, ensuring a robust and reliable tool for standardized registration data. The draft data schema is available for review. Please feel free to send us your feedback!

PrefixCtl is live and open-sourced. You can find the code on our GitHub. We’ve also set it up as a service you can try for free to see how it looks when deployed.

How PrefixCtl works

With PrefixCtl, you can create and manage sets of prefixes, add metadata, and integrate various data sources. It offers an API for easy access to this data and supports various use cases like BGP monitoring, reputation monitoring, and more.

Test it yourself, at FullCtl.

Join us on this journey

Both tools are open source, and we welcome the community’s input. Check out the current progress, contribute to the development, or just provide feedback. We’re building these tools to serve you and the community. Your input is invaluable.


Our goal with PrefixCtl and RegCtl is to provide powerful, open source tools that simplify and standardize network data management. We believe these tools will significantly benefit network operators by providing consistent and reliable data, reducing the complexity and effort required to manage network resources.

We’re excited about the potential of these tools and look forward to releasing RegCtl later this year. In the meantime, try out PrefixCtl, and let us know what you think. Your feedback will help shape the future of these projects. For any questions or more information, feel free to reach out at FullCtl. Have a great time exploring the possibilities with PrefixCtl and stay tuned for more updates on RegCtl!

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The views expressed by the authors of this blog are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of APNIC. Please note a Code of Conduct applies to this blog.

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