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ETpro's avatar

My ISP is IPv6 capable now. Is yours? [See details].

Asked by ETpro (34217 points ) June 6th, 2012

Today; June 6, 2012; a large number of Internet Service Providers around the world upgraded their networks to IPv6 capability. The technology has been around now since around 2000. It was developed to cope with the shortage of IP addresses in IPv4 number space.

Internet Engineers have known for years now that the IP address system of IPv4 would soon run out of IP address numbers. The last blocks of several million addresses were assigned last year to the Domain Registrars that parcel them out. The IPv4 system uses 32 bit binary numbers, usually written in human-readable notation such as 208.80.152.201 (Wikipedia.org’s IP address). That allows for a paltry 4,294,967,296 addresses, which means that only 4 out of every 7 living human beings today could have their own IP adderess.

IPv6 resolves the number space restriction by switching to 128 bit numbering, with IP addresses looking like 2001:db8:0:1234:0:567:8:1. This change allows for a staggering 340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 (3.4×10^32) addresses. That’s enough for every one of the 7 billion humans on Earth to have roughly 48,600,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Web sites for themselves.

The new IPv6 system has so much address space it seems as if it will suffice even if we spread into space and discover other intelligent life in need of IP addresses. But of course, back in 1989 when the engineers at CERN were developing the concept of the World Wide Web, a 32 bit number seemed ridiculously large.

Has your ISP made the switch? Do you think IPv6 will last a lifetime, or will we be upgrading to IPv8 with 256 bits at some point in the foreseeable future?

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7 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

I’m with comcast, and they say they have made the switch. But my cable model is still giving me a IPv4 assignment, and my router isn’t ipv6 capable, so there’s no real difference.

Eventually it might change, but for me, no big deal.

mattbrowne's avatar

They said it would be switched at 2 pm central European summer time, which was about 6 hours ago. Trouble with some routers or very old operating systems could occur. In my case nothing happened. Everything runs smoothly. I actually don’t know whether my ISP Deutsche Telekom made the switch. I would assume it did. Yes, IPv6 will last a lifetime. It will take a while for all colonists on Ganymede and Titan to have their Java-based toasters connected to the Internet. We need to expand beyond the solar system to run out of addresses.

flutherother's avatar

I’ve only got a link-local IPv6 address. I know that IPv6 will run out of addresses some day. Don’t ask me how I know but it will.

wundayatta's avatar

Yeah, well my ISP has been on the case for over a week already:

Comcast Achieves World IPv6 Launch Milestone
Monday, June 4, 2012

When Comcast decided to participate in World IPv6 Launch, we committed to enabling at least 1% of our customers with IPv6 by June 6, 2012. We are happy to report that we achieved this goal a few days ago, on May 24, 2012, and the number of customers enabled with IPv6 continues to grow every day! See the details on our blog.

jerv's avatar

My ISP has, but that doesn’t do me much good since I failed the IPv6 test. (There is a slightly simpler one here)

Looks like it’s time to upgrade some stuff :/

Brian1946's avatar

Thanks for the test link, @jerv.

According to my results, “It looks like you have only IPv4 Internet service at this time. Don’t feel bad – most people are in this position right now. Most Internet service providers are not quite yet ready to provide IPv6 Internet to residential customers.”

My ISP is AT&T.

ETpro's avatar

@jerv Same here. Comcast, my ISP, has upgraded but my router is using Teredo Tunneling and still fails. Time for some upgrades.

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