In about 365 days give or take one or two, the Internet world as we know it will be out of IPv4 IP addresses. Some say, “So what?”–but, this means that the push to IPv6 will be even greater. ICANN has been working on the move to IPv6 since 1999. The new Protocol standard has been defined since 1998 by the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force). According to information found on Wikipedia.org concerning IPv6 in 2008, Google performed a study to find that “IPv6 deployment was less than 1% on the Internet-enabled hosts in any country.”
What is IPv6 compared to IPv4? IPv6 is the next-generation Internet Protocol designed to take the place of IPv4. IPv4 currently can accommodate about 4 billion individual IP addresses. Whereas IPv6 can support a total of 2128 IP addresses.
The features of Ipv6 that make it inviting to be our next Internet Protocol are listed below. Besides that, on https://www.dfydaily.com/ you will find all the complications that are there when it comes to the implementation of IPv6 throughout the globe.
1.) Larger address space, again IPv4 can pass out 4 Billion IP addresses, whereas IPv6 can hand out 2 to the power of 128. So multiply, 2 times 2 times 2 till you have done so 128 times. This is a huge number. To give you some perspective, if I multiply 2 times 2 times 2 and continue at about 31 times, I am at 4 billion or roughly the amount of IP addresses available on the current IPv4 system. And I have only proceeded ¼ of the way through multiplying 2 times 2, etc of the 128 times needed to represent the amount of IP addresses that IPv6 supports.
2.) Better security, IPSEC security is built into the IPv6 Protocol.
3.) Simplified processing by routers, part of the plan with IPv6 is that IP addresses will be assigned to geographic regions, so it will be easier to know and route traffic. So for example if you are sending an email to IP address “x” and that IP address is located in the same country as you are, the route needed to find the destination will be faster.
As consumers, IPv6 will have an influence soon on the electronic equipment that we purchase for the home, business, and entertainment. Even though we have 635 days or so till IPv4 is out of IP addresses, we might want to think about protecting our electronic investments now.
I have looked into several consumer electronic items to determine some areas where we will be ok, as well as items that we need to know will either have an upgrade, need to be replaced, etc. If you are like me, you try to spend wisely and hope to get a fair amount of time from the items that you buy. For example, I like to get 3 to 5 years out of each computer and about the same from my internet router. I have had the same cell phone for about 3 years so it is about ready for an upgrade, but I want to ensure that my next one will last about as long as this past one.
What I found out might be a surprise to you, but I hope that this will bring about some things to think about when you go out to your local electronics store to make your next big purchase. Here are how things are stacking up:
- SmartPhone (iPhone) These devices are not ready for IPv6. They might be able to accommodate a software update but not all of them. Check with the manufacture as to what their individual plan is for IPv6 compatibility.
- Game Consoles- I found that Xbox and Wii are ready for IPv6, but the Sony PlayStation is not quite ready.
- Computers, all PC’s and Mac’s today will support IPv6, it is part of the built-in the network card.
- Routers, Some routers are ready but verify before you buy. I have a router that is only a year or so old and it does not support IPv6. I will have to hope for an upgrade
- Blackberries, at this time they do not support IPv6. Other variations might need to verify with the manufacture
- Wireless Media Players, these units do not support IPv6, so before spending $200 to $600+ on a media player you might want to find out the long term plans of the bios software.
- NAS (Network Attached Storage), most do not support IPv6, again need to check on your specific model number.
The good news is that even though IPv4 will run out of numbers in just under 2 years, IPv4 will be around for a little while longer. However, I would estimate that due to the benefits of IPv6 that there will be a huge migration to the new IP protocol and you will need to be watchful of the electronics that you are purchasing to ensure that you get the most bang for the buck.