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How to throttle the FCC to dial up modem speeds on your website using Nginx
# The blog post that started it all:
# Current known FCC address ranges:
# Confirm/locate FCC IP ranges with this:
# In your nginx.conf:
location / {
if ( $remote_addr ~* ) {
limit_rate 3k;
if ( $remote_addr ~* ) {
limit_rate 3k;
if ( $remote_addr ~* ) {
limit_rate 3k;
if ( $remote_addr ~* ) {
limit_rate 3k;
if ( $remote_addr ~* ) {
limit_rate 3k;
if ( $remote_addr ~* ) {
limit_rate 3k;
# put the serve files or proxy_pass code here.

Thank you for this, I've implemented it on all of my sites.

oh those are some fun IP addresses to know :)

Nice. For performance reasons, and with an increasing number of IP ranges, this ought to be a map though. Example (untested):

map $remote_addr $throttle_fcc {
        default 0; 1; 1; 1; 1; 1; 1;

And then

location / {
    if ($throttle_fcc == 1) {
        limit_rate 3k;

heeton commented May 9, 2014

Should a simple header/corner banner be injected also?
Give people 5-min copy-paste job to set up their own throttled connection with an explanation.

fallenby commented May 9, 2014

I think the slowed effect would annoy people enough as it is, perhaps having a larger impact.

davecb commented May 9, 2014

I recommend a big black overprint (;-))

Olliepop commented May 9, 2014

This is beautiful. Implementing on my sites.

Welp, I've got some work to do this weekend. Will post an Apache fork (yeah, I know).

baughj commented May 9, 2014

Don't forget IPv6. :)

In addition, this is a better link to get all the networks associated with their OrgID:

Also: and cover what look like some extremely old reassigned blocks ( and


kyledrake commented May 9, 2014

@alexzeitgeist Much better! I'll test that out in a little bit. @baughj I'll add them to the list, thanks.


ghost commented May 9, 2014

We've all seen the 'If Is Evil' page on the Nginx wiki, so can anyone estimate the performance hit for this? I'm all for throttling these morons but if it slows the server down for everyone, then the joke is on us.

It would be great to add the office networks for Comcast, Verizon, and other ISP's lobbying against regulation.

tlherr commented May 9, 2014

Well played

A banner could say 'Our site appears to be getting rate-limited by the FCC', or something of the sort. Make people believe it's already happened and that slow sites are the future, instead of some only potential, distant problem. Then tell them this is what it WOULD be like. Then redirect/link to somewhere where they can sign a petition.

@mykecameron That is what I was thinking!! Anyone have those IP blocks?

mandb commented May 9, 2014

hard to put a banner on your site from within nginx... this gets the point across. I wish some big sites would enforce this... ars + techcrunch would be great.

Just for fun, some quasi code:

if ($_GET['throttle_fcc'] = 1) { showBanner("SLOW TRAFFIC KEEP RIGHT"); }

Fucking brilliant.

Waiting for Google to kick in here.

This will show how intelligent the FCC really is, given that they will be all attempting to use the search engine to find said knowledge. I doubt their response to any of our questions from here going forward will be very FAST! Dun Dun DuuuuuHHH!!!!

Of maybe a better banner would be: "For increased speed, please make a donation to the EFF"

nfrm commented May 9, 2014

@alexzeitgeist the if statement should only have one equals.


location / {
    if ($throttle_fcc = 1) {
        limit_rate 3k;

razster commented May 9, 2014

Added and running, thank you.

Well played sir... golf clap

Overheard: " is where the heart is, but the is made of latinum."

Money talks

Grandt commented May 9, 2014

What is Comcast's ranges?

retr0h commented May 9, 2014


bdmorin commented May 9, 2014

As a disgruntled (and optionless) Comcast customer, I would be perfectly fine if Google did this to all Comcast networks.

This made my Friday.

rjonesx commented May 9, 2014

We need an apache 2.2 version :-( wish I knew how to code it.

  1. should be geo to actually match cidrs. you regex hostnames not cidrs.
  2. use bra to reduce memory footprint.
  3. this one depends on your strategy. I prefer to limit requests (and connections but trickier) vs rates after connection.
  4. let's get serious and send the fcc back to 1993 on the rate
http {
        geo $fccjail {
                default 0;
                2620:0:610::/48 1;
                2600:803:230::/48 1;
        limit_req_zone $binary_remote_addr zone=fccjailreq:8m rate=5r/s;
        limit_req zone=fccjailreq burst=5 nodelay;


BrentW commented May 9, 2014

So proud for neocities.

I only wish we could do this to every computer and device that anyone in management or at any level of decision making beyond peon at the FCC uses. Home, work, mobile, all of it. Then make them paid for tiered speedups. Cost $10 per month per 100Kbps.


kyledrake commented May 9, 2014

@teichopsia Can you show how I can make that work with 3kb rate limit?

ross commented May 9, 2014

like the idea. would be nice to include congress and probably the supreme court as well. likely the best way to get the point across, especially if central sites like google and netflix participated.

great idea.

This is a peaceful protest I can get behind.

dilijev commented May 10, 2014

@ross I was going to say that might be illegal, but then I realized, it must not be, since this law is up for grabs, and if they are annoyed enough to make it illegal, mission accomplished.


rec9140 commented May 10, 2014

Any chance of a port to Litespeed???? Please?? Or can this be dumped into litespeed since its "supposed" to be "drop in" for Apache...I've seen the Apache fork... but I found out that my newest box uses Litespeed v. Apache :( :(

Any chance for Litespeed???


For developers on LAMP stacks I offer the following .htaccess rules:

<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{REMOTE_ADDR} ^192\.133\.125\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{REMOTE_ADDR} ^165\.135\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{REMOTE_ADDR} ^192\.104\.54\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{REMOTE_ADDR} ^4\.21\.126\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{REMOTE_ADDR} ^65\.125\.25\.(6[4-9]|[7-9]\d|10\d|11\d|12[0-7])$ [OR]
RewriteCond %{REMOTE_ADDR} ^208\.23\.64\.(\d|\d\d|11\d|12[0-7])$ [OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP:X-Forwarded-For} ^192\.133\.125\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP:X-Forwarded-For} ^165\.135\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP:X-Forwarded-For} ^192\.104\.54\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP:X-Forwarded-For} ^4\.21\.126\. [OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP:X-Forwarded-For} ^65\.125\.25\.(6[4-9]|[7-9]\d|10\d|11\d|12[0-7])$ [OR]
RewriteCond %{HTTP:X-Forwarded-For} ^208\.23\.64\.(\d|\d\d|11\d|12[0-7])$
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ /throttle.php?rate=3000 [L,QSA]

...where in this example throttle.php is a script that perhaps uses a combination of ob_start(), ob_get_clean() and sleep() to dribble the output. If you use the sleep() approach, be sure to use set_time_limit() to set a long execution time if you don't want PHP to exit at the default 30 seconds.

xy0 commented May 10, 2014

^Thanks, I am the webmaster for a hosting company and will employ this immediately.

xyntrix commented May 10, 2014

Just to confirm.. aren't these the public IPs for FCC in-bound services and what not? Are FCC employees actually sourcing connections out from behind these IPs (eg, their phone, home, or office connection)?

This would be like throttling the IP(s) for to give Google employees a bad time -- right? Does anyone have access logs showing traffic from these IPs?

FYI: FCC has a few more IP addresses than above:

This from ARIN.NET (the people who assign NA IP addresses):

FCC (NET-165-135-0-0-1) -
FCCNET2 (NET-192-133-125-0-1) -
FCCNET (NET-192-104-54-0-1) -
FCC2-126-30 (NET-4-21-126-0-1) -
FCC (NET6-2620-610-1) 2620:0:610:: - 2620:0:610:FFFF:FFFF:FFFF:FFFF:FFFF
SPRINTLINK (NET-208-23-64-0-1) -
TBD (NET6-2600-803-230-1) 2600:803:230:: - 2600:803:230:FFFF:FFFF:FFFF:FFFF:FFFF
Q0503-65-125-25-64 (NET-65-125-25-64-1) -
SPRINTLINK (NET-208-31-254-128-1) -

However - in my 15+ years in telecommunications, it entirely too easy to source from a different subnet not listed here. Unfortunately as xyntrix said, web logs will tell the tale of where the source is coming from.

(my two cents) - while this is a SPECTACULAR idea, it won't last long as subnets and source IP's can be added to their servers and NOT added to the FCC's AS/BGP announcements.

Good luck guys!

rbowen commented May 10, 2014

No need for mod rewrite and icky php scripts. mod_ratelimit does this.

pdp7 commented May 10, 2014


Would have been nice if Netflix did this with Comcast customers. Instead of paying Comcast for doing what its customers already pay them for, have them pay to keep their own customers happy. (I realise they couldn't have because monopoly and not wanting to be the bad guy, but still, one can dream...)

There has to be a way to emulate this in JS. Then we could make a Cloudflare app....

f4bio commented May 10, 2014

for sake of completness, lighttpd version:

Sorry for the n00b question...

My site is WordPress powered hosted on GoDaddy. Any idea how to implement this? Or if someone can make a plugin like the SOPA blackout one, that would be awesome!

Thank you for this, implementing it directly. Logic will prevail.

I look forward to these ranges being reassigned, then all of you forgetting this shit in your long, crusty configuration file, then spending four days trying to figure out why only $isp customers in $region can't do shit with your site.

Oh wait, if you're sticking this in your config and getting away with it, you don't have a site of note. So, never mind.

(Also, the Apache 12-regexes-per-request to a PHP script that calls sleep() is my personal favorite. In grown-up operations terms, we call that a "DoS vector," being one while(1) away from unresponsive.)

Not tested and could use some improvements. I'll make a better version and post tomorrow.

= ip2long("") && $ip <= ip2long("") ) || ( $ip >= ip2long("") && $ip <= ip2long("") ) || ( $ip >= ip2long("") && $ip <= ip2long("") ) || ( $ip >= ip2long("") && $ip <= ip2long("") ) || ( $ip >= ip2long("") && $ip <= ip2long("") ) || ( $ip >= ip2long("") && $ip <= ip2long("") )) { //Redirect to some horrible site. You need to change the last line for this script to work. header("Location: || || someOtherHorribleSite.whatevs"); die(); } ?>

m1 commented May 11, 2014


Apache 12-regexes-per-request
In grown-up operations terms, we call that a "DoS vector," being one while(1) away from unresponsive.)

Can't tell if this is a joke or pure idiocy. Also this made me laugh:

Oh wait, if you're sticking this in your config and getting away with it, you don't have a site of note. So, never mind.

@m1 Pay no heed. Apple's employees know everything about everything.


FWIW: If you are a MaxCDN customer you can enable this in the CP:

Danw33 commented May 21, 2014

Brilliant! Implementing this on all of my sites...

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