RIP: Bill Manning

I was saddened to see this yesterday, that Bill Manning had passed. I was surprised this morning that it hadn’t hit NANOG yet but thought I’d post something because I have a ton of respect for Bill as I’m sure many here do.

I met Bill as a very young, thought-I-knew-everything network engineer around ’92 when I was starting my internet life at a small ISP in Houston. Bill was visiting Stan Barber @ Sesquinet, which was my upstream provider at the time via T1, if I remember it all correctly.

I was young, fresh out of college with a CS degree, and learning this “internet thing.” I met with Bill on campus at Rice University to discuss networking/routing, and Bill taught me CIDR, which I had no f-ing idea at that time what it was. Bill was always gracious and willing to share/teach. We always chatted and stayed in touch at NANOG and IETF conferences and through his relationship with Los Nettos over the years. Most notable, to me, was 2007 when my youngest daughter was diagnosed with cancer, and I believe Bill’s wife had (or previously battled) cancer as well. I hadn’t seen Bill for a few years, but he immediately reached out, shared his positive thoughts/prayers, and kept in touch during the battle we went through. Bill cared about people, and as noted below, he was smart as hell, and always had a crazy idea for how to solve a problem. Also as noted in Rod’s note below, Bill had a wealth of music knowledge and could always recommend something new and interesting to listen to.

I’ll definitely miss Bill, and his passing makes me feel the years, and the mileage, but in a good way.


Sad to hear about Bill. I also began my career at a small ISP in Houston where we also had a T1 to SESQUINET, and Bill was already a legend to us Jr. Sysadmins in town in 1995/96.


I’m so sorry to hear about Bill. He willingly shared what he knew with anyone who asked, and had an oft-unacknowledged hand in many RFCs. I first met him at ISI in Santa Monica where he helped install one of our first peering routers in a parking ramp janitor’s closet. Later I had the good fortune to edit one of his academic papers on DNS, and he was a joy to work with. I learned a lot about DNS from him. I’ll miss his many Facebook gags and kind words.

Dear team,

I was very sad when I heard this news. Bill was a fun and friendly presence, and patiently mentored me in my early days. I’ll never forget when he scrawled “I love bots” on one of my NANOG badges. I still have it. :slight_smile: I had the fortune to be on a couple of panels with him, and I learned from his answers and the way he presented them. I admire that he cared, and he gave of himself without hesitation. I will miss him and his contributions.

Zichrono livracha, Bill’s memory is definitely for blessing.

Be well,
Rabbi Rob.

Chris Caputo posted the following to the SIX mailing list a few days ago. I think this really shows Bill in action, helping a new IX get set up. He will be missed.

Bill Manning died unexpectedly this morning, January 25th, at his home.

It was Bill's presentations on June 5th, 1997 at NANOG in Tampa that 
provided the impetus to evolve the private interconnect between IXA and 
Wolfe to expand to include 3 networks, thus forming the IXP.  These were 
the presentations:

   - "International Exchange Points: Growth & Trends", Bill Manning, ISI

   - "Large & Small Exchange Points: Advantages, Tradeoffs, Futures", Bill Manning, ISI

Bill explained that once 3 networks connect to a common fabric, other 
networks will be motivated to join.  Only 3!  Nikos and I looked at each 
other and decided at that point to connect my network to his (IXA), on the 
same ethernet fabric that IXA and Wolfe were communicating.  I'll never 
forget the moment and 15 days later my network was connected.

Per the below emails, after a few months we switched to Bill's address 
space, and it was used for the SIX subnets until July 19th, 2010, almost 
13 years.

Our earliest members will recall that Bill would email the SIX mailing 
list to announce each new IP assignment.  The first using his address 
space is below.  This tradition of Bill's continues today.

He will be missed.


I too am saddened by this news. I had the honor to work with Bill during our time together at ARIN. The world is dimmed by his passing.

Definitely sad news. I worked with Bill at ISI when we were forming the MAE-LA-LAAP Internet Exchange and owe a lot of my current contributions to his efforts back then. He had some of the most interesting (and funny after-the-fact) stories surrounding his many international trips, including the time a travel agent forgot to get him a visa to transit from the domestic airport in China to the international one. He definitely touched many people and shared his knowledge and expertise for many next generation network engineers and computer scientists.


I also had the good fortune of working with Bill. I learned a lot from him, both while he was officially our vendor, and afterwards, when he was always ready and willing to provide insight and advice when I asked. He was absolutely one of those rare individuals who would never hesitate to help out behind the scenes without any expectation of reward or recognition. A simple personal thank you was always appreciated, and even that seemed to surprise him, as if he really didn’t even believe he’d done anything. He will be missed.