Denis Walker

Example Usage of RIPE Database Geolocation Prototype

Denis Walker

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This article provides you with a number of step by step examples on how to use the recently released prototype geolocation service in the RIPE Database.


After feedback received from many sources, including RIPE 62 and Regional Meetings, mailing lists, RIPE NCC trainings, Customer Support and Member Survey, the RIPE NCC  built a Geolocation Prototype for the RIPE Database , as per the action point from the RIPE Database Working Group.

The basic idea is to allow two new optional attributes in both INETNUM and INET6NUM objects. The "geoloc:" attribute takes the values -90 to 90 for latitude, -180 to 180 for longitude and indicates the location of the resource. The "language:" attribute takes as the value a valid two-letter ISO 639-1 language code.

Updating these optional attributes

The Geolocation prototype version of Webupdates allows both these new optional attributes to be updated. Either the field or text area mode of Webupdates can be used. The field mode provides additional features to help select the values of these attributes. If the required fields are not shown in the template, add them by clicking the 'Add any attribute' icon at the desired position in the object template. These attributes can be used together or either can be used independently.

The new Geolocation prototype version of Webupdates is available now at:

Start by searching for the object in Webupdates to modify (you can enlarge the images by clicking on them).

Search Function in RIPE Database Webupdates


The "geoloc:" value can be entered as two floating point numbers if you know the longitude and latitude. As an alternative we provide a Google map. This can be opened by clicking the location icon next to the attribute.

Map Pointer in RIPE Database Webupdates


This opens the Google map in a pop-up window with a pin showing the current (or default) location. To change this, simply drag the pin to the required location. When you release the pin the new location is copied to the Webupdates "geoloc:" field.

  Map in RIPE Database Webupdates


For the "language:" you can enter any valid two-letter code from the ISO 639-1 language code list. If you want to specify more than one language, add more "language:" fields by clicking the 'Add another attribute of this type' icon.

Finish the update by adding your password in the Session password box and click the Update button.


Updated Object in RIPE Database Webupdates


Searching for these optional attributes

The Geolocation Finder is a prototype service for searching IP addresses for this optional data. Simply enter the IP address into the form and click Search. If this address is covered by either location or language data the results are shown in two ways. The first part shows any data found as textual values. If location data is found, this is also shown on a Google map.

The new Geolocation Finder tool is available now at:

Geolocation Results in RIPE Database Webupdates


Convenient objects

To make it easier for users to create their own IP address data we have created a MNTNER object in this TEST Database. This MNTNER: TEST-GEOLOC-MNT requires the password: geoloc for authentication. For parent authentication with address space you may also need to use password: emptypassword and both these passwords can be added to the Session password box in Webupdates. For PERSON references in INET6NUM objects you can use AA1-TEST which also exists in this TEST Database.

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About the author

From 2001 to 2015 I was a developer and then the business analyst for the RIPE Database with the RIPE NCC. During this time I have been involved in every aspect of it's design and development of the software, web services and infrastructure, it's philosophy, legal, political and policy aspects, documentation, testing and future planning and specifying of new features

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