Welcome to the future: IPv6 launch day is tomorrow

Do we have flying cars, robot servants, jetpacks and time travel machines yet? Nope, not yet... but tomorrow we will be getting a lot more IP addresses when many of the top websites, service providers and equipment manufacturers celebrate World IPv6 Launch Day by transitioning to the IPv6 standard.

As Google points out in its official blog, the implementation of IPv6 will expand the amount of IP addresses capable of being issued out. Under IPv4, the communications protocol that currently directs most traffic on the Internet, about 4.3 billion IP addresses are allowed. Tomorrow, when more companies officially adopt IPv6, up to 2^128 IP addresses will be allowed. This is important given there are over 7 billion people in the world, 2.8 billion of which use some 11 billion Internet-enabled devices. Essentially, the Internet won't need to be upgraded in a similar capacity ever again. 

Last year, the organization which oversees the allocation of IP addresses, the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, ran out of IP addresses to give. This created a problem, as Internet users would have to begin sharing IP addresses if a new Internet Protocol weren't put into place. Such a situation could have resulted in potentially unsafe Internet usage. Now, however, there will be plenty of IP addresses to go around, with companies and services such as AT&T, Cisco, Comcast, Facebook, Google, Microsoft Bing, Time Warner and others participating in the deployment of IPv6; many have already implemented the new standard, however.

Google's created a handy video, seen below, describing the potential problems that would have occurred if the Internet didn't undergo this advancement.

Source: Google Blog

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Tomorrow, when more companies officially adopt IPv6, up to 2^128 IP addresses will be allowed.

Allowed? This article is massively misleading. You make it sound like using IPv6 has not been allowed up until today, which is clearly false. My previous ISP (the one I was with a year ago) allocated me a big block of IPv6 addresses which I had allocated to every PC in the house using the DHCP server on my Server 2008 R2 box. It worked great, but was largely useless since there were little to no websites that also used it. I've since moved to Sky Broadband which is one of those ISPs with their heads in the sand, I don't even think their router is capable of routing IPv6 traffic.

TCLN Ryster said,

Allowed? This article is massively misleading. You make it sound like using IPv6 has not been allowed up until today, which is clearly false. My previous ISP (the one I was with a year ago) allocated me a big block of IPv6 addresses which I had allocated to every PC in the house using the DHCP server on my Server 2008 R2 box. It worked great, but was largely useless since there were little to no websites that also used it. I've since moved to Sky Broadband which is one of those ISPs with their heads in the sand, I don't even think their router is capable of routing IPv6 traffic.


It only sounds like that if you completely ignore the phrasing of the sentence. The theoretical limit exists once all companies start implementing IPv6, which is what today is all about -- major companies agreeing to transition, which will cause others to transition.

When your previous ISP existed, you didn't have access to 2^128 IP addresses. That's not how it works. There's allocation issues and other matters. And the word "allowed" is directly in regards to the allocation issues.

Asrokhel said,
So far, there's not one Canadian company that I know of that's taking part in this yet.
Didn't you know? When referencing 'the world' on a topic it really just means America.

No thanks to giving all my internal devices public IP so it can been seen or target., NAT/PAT works great and I will keep my networks that way for internal.

Last year, the organization which oversees the allocation of IP addresses, the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, ran out of IP addresses to give. This created a problem, as Internet users would have to begin sharing IP addresses if a new Internet Protocol weren't put into place. Such a situation would have resulted in the potential breach of private information between Internet users.

That is actual BS, Right there...Who is "sharing" an IP address now!

ChuckFinley said,
"if" a new Internet Protocol weren't put into place. Such a situation would have resulted in the potential breach of private information between Internet users.
That is actual BS, Right there...Who is "sharing" an IP address now!

That big IF right there ^
but is not going to happen, in order to share the same IP, me and my neighbor will have to both use the same router with one WAN interface, me on 192.168.1.0 network and my neighbor on 192.168.10.0 network. Configure access rules where both sides won't have access or see each other for example.
The unsecure way is to just plug your self and neighbor on the same subnet, how to split the bill it's another story lol

My ISP doesn't seem to give a f*** about IPv6... I call them to ask when they will support IPv6, they don't seem to know what I'm talking about. I check their website, it's not mentionned anywhere that they plan to support it. Basically, they seem to be happy with the IPs (v4) they have, and they don't care for the future. I will laugh my ass out when they use the last few IPs they have.

myxomatosis said,
My ISP doesn't seem to give a f*** about IPv6... I call them to ask when they will support IPv6, they don't seem to know what I'm talking about. I check their website, it's not mentionned anywhere that they plan to support it. Basically, they seem to be happy with the IPs (v4) they have, and they don't care for the future. I will laugh my ass out when they use the last few IPs they have.

No you won't because they'll just NAT you from their end and be real derps about it to delay it even further because they don't want to spend money on upgrades.

FuhrerDarqueSyde said,

No you won't because they'll just NAT you from their end and be real derps about it to delay it even further because they don't want to spend money on upgrades.

You mean like 90% of mobile phone operators who don't give out real IPs? Just call up and complain.

In further news it's believed that New Zealand will still be using IPv4 until the year 2350 at which point they'll simply upgrade everyone to the newer Psynet when it wont actually cost the ISPs a single cent

cork1958 said,

Yeah, what's up with that?

A tech forum that isn't to techie?

It's been explained but basically their colo doesn't yet offer IPv6, so no IPv6 for neowin yet. They didn't want to add tunnels into the mix either.

Now let's hope the working group can iron out the remaining issues with DHCPv6 to help move this along easier. There's still a lot of work left to go.

osm0sis said,
Didn't IPv6 actually go live like 4 hours ago? Not later today...
Well it was standardised in and has been knocking about since 1999...

Edit: And Facebook have been using it for a while (I know this because I have a tunnel running and Flagfox).

osm0sis said,
Didn't IPv6 actually go live like 4 hours ago? Not later today...

Clarification, since there's been some confusion:
This is a world launch event. Companies are trying to get all their services, products, etc. IPv6 compatible by today. Other companies have transitioned in advance over the past year or so -- a lot of them did so yesterday to meet today's event.

I edited the article to make it clear this is a launch event due to the confusion. Sorry about that.

ccoltmanm said,
Does this mean typing in the ip to get into my router is going to be a pain in the ass?

Your home network can still be IPv4 no problem, since it's internal. Though at some point these will go v6 as well (only on future routers), and then you might as well just assign a hostname to your router to make it simple. I have mine set to "my.dd-wrt" already, for example, even though my network runs on v4.

osm0sis said,

Your home network can still be IPv4 no problem, since it's internal. Though at some point these will go v6 as well (only on future routers), and then you might as well just assign a hostname to your router to make it simple. I have mine set to "my.dd-wrt" already, for example, even though my network runs on v4.


future modems/routers? most current modems/routers already have IPv6 and win7 by default uses ipv6 if available.

Shadowzz said,

future modems/routers? most current modems/routers already have IPv6 and win7 by default uses ipv6 if available.

In fact, DD-WRT (for the past few years) has supported IPv6.

One of the overlook things with the original plan of IPv6 is to give every device connected in the world it's own unique IP. Even if this was behind a network or on your router in home. In essence, making every device connected to the web an end to end device (traceable). In theory of course.

remixedcat said,
I'm on IPv9 and every hair on my cat has 567,009,876,987 IP addresses!

Oh YEAH?! I'm on IPv12, and there are enough addresses that every single molecule in the universe can run 1.3x10^49 mobile phones. Since those phones would have to be IN the universe to work, IPv12 shifts exponentially through the 8th dimension to allow the all molecules that make up those mobile phones to have 1.3x10^49 mobile phones of their own.

cyberdrone2000 said,

Oh YEAH?! I'm on IPv12, and there are enough addresses that every single molecule in the universe can run 1.3x10^49 mobile phones. Since those phones would have to be IN the universe to work, IPv12 shifts exponentially through the 8th dimension to allow the all molecules that make up those mobile phones to have 1.3x10^49 mobile phones of their own.

I'm now upgraded to IPv9001 and

TRC said,
2^128 ought to be enough for anybody.

Oh well, it's just 4,86 * 10^28 IP addresses per person on earth.

TRC said,
2^128 ought to be enough for anybody.

After about 5245 years when humanity will have discovered intergalactic flight and will have colonized other planets, even those will be too few.

TRC said,
2^128 ought to be enough for anybody.

While it is true, there are 2^128 possible IPv6 addresses, most of them are not usable. IPv6 addressing works differently than IPv4. First, the addresses must be 100% hierarchical, just because you are not using all of your network range doesn't mean someone else can, they can't. Second, every router must be assigned an entire network, not just a single IP address. Each network has at least 2^64 IP addresses (a lot more if it is business class). There are also some goofy prefix rules, the first 16 bits basically define the type of network.

My point is that with IPv6 you really only get about 2^48 usable networks and many of those networks will only have a few unique devices on them. I am not saying it will be a problem, that is more than enough and if there is every a problem they could easily add new prefixes. All I am saying is that the 2^128 devices claim is far from true.

PS: I hope you are all ready to relearn how IP works, IPv6 is NOT IPv4 with longer addresses, many of the rules have changed.

Edited by sphbecker, Jun 6 2012, 1:06pm :

sphbecker said,

snipped
You were really close.
First 48 bits are ISP, next 16 are your subnet, and the last 64 are the usable addresses. So you get 2^64 usable network adresses PER SUBNET, and 2^16 subnets/networks

You are right on the 2^128 devices part (unless we all work REALLY WELL together... but IPv4 has the same problem so moot point... damn Apple and Ford with their class A networks!)

/me sixxs.net user
/me IPv6 certified

tmaxxtigger said,
How can you use 'never' and 'quite a while' in the same sentence... lol

I was writing a difference sentence before I changed it and didn't notice the error, thanks for the catch. Please feel free to report issues with articles by clicking the "Report a problem with article" link -- it gets to us quicker that way.

tmaxxtigger said,
How can you use 'never' and 'quite a while' in the same sentence... lol

My Grammar is gooder than yours.

nice - gmail is working in IPv6 and even the "Account Activity Details" now show IPv6 addresses - unlike last year when the activity details did not display IPv6 addresses.