I've seen a few queries about multicast recently and I know the BBC are heavily trying to push it (no doubt so the next time something goes up in smoke they can try to shift less than 10Gb/s of traffic), so I decided to investigate further. While the Linux kernel has support for various bits and bobs it seems the userspace routing tools required to actually run a multicast network are sadly lacking. The only maintained code I can find is Xorp, which falls down because a) C++ for core code scares me and more relevantly b) it doesn't support OSPF. While various people seemed to have asked about it in connection with Zebra / Quagga there doesn't seem to be anything recent (I found some code from 2000, but it has large warnings all over it). Pointers welcome.
I'm not quite sure there's a whole lot of point in multicast yet anyway (not that this will stop me trying to sort it out - I'm a keen supporter of IPv6 even though it's not really there yet either). With the ADSL system in the UK there's no saving to be made across BT's ATM network, or even into the central pipes at the ISP end. Maybe that'll change and BT will do some sort of evil PPP stuffing magic. Cable modems strike me as more likely to get the facility first though, given they're a broadcast domain under the control of a single provider already. It'd be really neat if the new NTL Video on Demand was a multicast system, but I suppose that doesn't work with unique start times.
Oh, and while I remember, see Madagascar. I'd feared the penguins wouldn't be in it enough, and they're not, but it's more than I expected. The monkeys are good too.