World IPv6 Day updates

08 June 2011 |


For World IPv6 Day, we will be providing you with updates on how different businesses are taking part during this 24 hour ‘test-flight’ of IPv6.

According to the Internet Society, the event’s organisers, today aims to encourage organisations in the industry to prepare services for IPv6 and ensure a smooth transition from IPv4.

Businesses trialling their content over IPv6 include Google, Facebook, Yahoo! and Akamai, totalling 376 websites worldwide. Most users will not be able to see a difference in their services because a number of companies - including those already mentioned - will be running IPv4 services alongside IPv6, a process called ‘dual stacking’. Users will be able to access IPv6 content but only through the providers’ IPv6 enabled server. The majority of users will still be limited to IPv4.

German news website, Heise.de, trialled IPv6 in September 2010 and due to its success is now dual stacking its IP addresses. The site said that it expects more IPs to use this method because users don’t notice the difference.

More IP addresses are required due to the rapid growth of the ‘Internet of Things’ with everyday objects increasingly becoming connected to the internet.

IPv4 supplies a maximum of 4.3 billion IP addresses with approximately 80 million left to be allocated. The IPv6 system gives a maximum of 340 undecillion addresses (1 undecillion equals 10 followed by 35 zeros in the British numbering system).

“It will take a long, long time [for IPv6 addresses to run out], but using up all 340 undecillion IPv6 addresses is a possibility. But it's not something to worry about,” explained Mark Heraghty, MD of Virgin Media Business in a statement on the company’s website. “The great thing about the internet is that its capacity is infinite, so should the day come when the final lot of IPv6 addresses is assigned, we can simply create more.”


Latest developments: 

• Cable&Wireless Worldwide claims it was one of the first network providers to roll out IPv6 on its global network. It is now working with companies such as the Filipino telco Globe Telecom and Akamai to provide IPv6 connectivity.

• US cable operator Cox Business and its customers including Arin, FastQ Communications, Login and Promptlink are all participating in today’s trial.

• Mobile operator Orange will be providing content accessible through IPv6, deploying IPv6 networks and conducting initiatives to raise awareness of IPv6 use.

• Telefónica is taking part in World IPv6 Day but said that it has been working on the transition to IPv6 for the past 12 years.

• Level 3 said it has also been testing protocol solutions for years meaning that every market in which it operates is ready for the transition to IPv6.

• France’s second largest telco, SFR, has selected Cisco to transfer its network from IPv4.

• NTT America has provided its customers with IPv6 since 2004 through the NTT Communications Global IP Network. The company claims it was the first network to offer commercially available dual-stack IPv6 transit globally.