When sending an identical copy of an earlier datagram, a host MAY optionally retain the same Identification field in the copy.
Some Internet protocol experts have maintained that when a host sends an identical copy of an earlier datagram, the new copy should contain the same Identification value as the original. There are two suggested advantages: (1) if the datagrams are fragmented and some of the fragments are lost, the receiver may be able to reconstruct a complete datagram from fragments of the original and the copies; (2) a congested gateway might use the IP Identification field (and Fragment Offset) to discard duplicate datagrams from the queue.
However, the observed patterns of datagram loss in the Internet do not favor the probability of retransmitted fragments filling reassembly gaps, while other mechanisms (e.g., TCP repacketizing upon retransmission) tend to prevent retransmission of an identical datagram [IP:9]. Therefore, we believe that retransmitting the same Identification field is not useful. Also, a connectionless transport protocol like UDP would require the cooperation of the application programs to retain the same Identification value in identical datagrams.