XO Communications' Blog

When Should You Adopt IPv6?

[ 15 ] February 23, 2012 | By

As more IP applications are developed and information resources increase, networks require additional IP addresses. Due to the increased demand on addresses, the IPv4 address pool is running out and the requirement for larger contiguous blocks of address space will not be available in IPv4. IPv6 can provide for this address demand.

  • I believe that IPv6 adoption can also bring immediate benefits in the form of improved network topologies and security. Network end points can be better defined to all other network points through the expansion of address assignments – NAT can go away.
  • Making websites and IP services available via IPv6 will depend on network structures and the services themselves. This effort may include updating equipment and software for IPv6 compliancy, requiring support from ISPs for IPv6 in the form of tunneling IPv6 over IPv4 (dual stack), training internal network support staff on IPv6 and working on network renumbering for transitioning to IPv6.
  • Based on my own interactions at XO I have found that those involved in the transition to IPv6 will look for the least impactful process of acceptance. Maintaining interfaces with present IPv4 environments brings to the forefront the dual-stack solution. This arrangement requires that all elements of IP connectivity such as the IP network, customer premises routers and switches and IP providers along the way be able to support IPv4 and IPv6. The majority of the Internet is now equipped for dual-stack and most root name servers are IPv6 capable, and Top Level Domains (TLDs) are serviced by dual-stacked domain name servers.

My conclusion regarding IPv6 adoption is that the conversion to IPv6 across the Internet is inevitable. Converting to the full IPv6 environment immediately is not required but accepting the changeover from IPv4 should be high on the list of things to do over 2012 and 2013 to best maintain an effective presence on the Internet.

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Tags: IP services, IPv6

Category : Communications

About Robert Fowler: I'm the product manager for the dedicated Internet access services at XO Communications. I've got thirty years of experience in the telecommunications industry. My background includes the design and implementation of voice and data network solutions, the evaluation and development of new services, and the overall lifecycle management of services. My experience includes managerial positions at major telecommunications companies in both technical solutions development and fulfillment, and in product development and delivery. I've got a degree in Business Administration and enjoy reading, traveling and restoring older homes. View author profile.

Comments (15)

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  1. Mark Despathy says:

    I want my IPv6!

  2. Pam Hutchins says:

    Great job! I’m currently taking my fourth Cisco networking class in college. We are all for IPv6!

  3. Jeffrey Fowler says:

    We do not use IPv6 at the Penatgon :(

  4. Jason Olsen says:

    We have an IP Transit (general commodity Internet) circuit in the Chicago area provisioned through XO Communications. Is it ready for dual-stack IPv6? If so, how do I go about working to have that service turned on? Is there additional cost associated?

  5. Robert Fowler says:

    Depending on the port speed you are using the transition to IPv6 should be fairly easy. If this is not a 1.544 Mbps solution a call to XO Customer Care for product support at 1.800.421.3872 will start the IPv6 process for your location. If you are using a 1.544 Mbps solution installed before June of 2011 the adoption of IPv6 will be more involved as XO would need to reterminate the existing port to a newer network device that supports IPv6. There is no cost to add IPv6 to an existing or new Internet connected solution.

  6. Jason Olsen says:

    Thank you, Robert, for the pointer on where to go to initiate this!

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