Practical Technology

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How far has the Internet come with IPv6 Adoption?

This won’t come as any surprise to anyone in the network business, but Arbor Networks has just published a study of “native IPv6 traffic volumes across multiple large carriers” and found “only a small fraction of the Internet has adopted IPv6. ” We are so hosed.

Oh, no one’s going to try to Google “Lady Gaga” tomorrow and find that her YouTube videos are gone. But, if you’re in charge of a business, you’re eventually going to need more Internet addresses and the IPv4 address cupboard is bare. Indeed, the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC), which is in charge of all Asian Internet addresses, is now down to the last IPv6 crumbs.

The situation isn’t a lot better in North America. The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) tells me that, “ARIN has seen a steady, if not, slight decline in the number of IPv4 request since IANA reached depletion of their IPv4 pool in early February 2011. However, ARIN has seen a substantial increase in the number of IPv6 requests since that same time. Currently, ARIN has over 5 /8s of IPv4 address and expects this will last through most of this year and possibly into next year.”

When things get really tight with IPv4 addresses, which at this rate will be in the late fall of 2011, ARIN may start restricting IP [Internet Protocol] allocations. In the meantime, you can try to buy IPv4 addresses, but that’s a short term solution. The bottom line is we’re running out of IPv4 addresses and we must start switching over.

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