The PAWS mechanism protects against errors due to sequence number wrap-around on high-speed connection. Segments from an earlier incarnation of the same connection are also a potential cause of old duplicate errors. In both cases, the TCP mechanisms to prevent such errors depend upon the enforcement of a maximum segment lifetime (MSL) by the Internet (IP) layer (see Appendix of RFC-1185 for a detailed discussion). Unlike the case of sequence space wrap-around, the MSL required to prevent old duplicate errors from earlier incarnations does not depend upon the transfer rate. If the IP layer enforces the recommended 2 minute MSL of TCP, and if the TCP rules are followed, TCP connections will be safe from earlier incarnations, no matter how high the network speed. Thus, the PAWS mechanism is not required for this case.
We may still ask whether the PAWS mechanism can provide additional security against old duplicates from earlier connections, allowing us to relax the enforcement of MSL by the IP layer. Appendix B explores this question, showing that further assumptions and/or mechanisms are required, beyond those of PAWS. This is not part of the current extension.