Internet transition to speedier IPv6 accelerating

Mar 27, 2014
An ethernet cable is seen at a news conference on January 8, 2013 in New York City

The transition to the next-generation Internet protocol IPv6 is set to speed up this year as web addresses under the previous system IPv4 run out, a senior industry figure said at a meeting about the future of the web Thursday.

Internet protocol is the method by which data is routed by computers on the web. It is necessary for devices to connect online. But the huge increase in Internet users and devices worldwide is putting a strain on the current system.

Paul Wilson, director general of the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC), the region's Internet registry, said addresses on IPv4 worldwide are either exhausted or near exhaustion.

"The challenge is encouraging businesses and organisations to adopt IPv6, because their infrastructure is built around IPv4 and the two systems are not entirely compatible," he told AFP on the sidelines of a meeting of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) in Singapore.

IPv6, which came into effect in June 2012, allows for trillions of "IP" numbers or addresses, while IPv4 has room for only 4.3 billion, which is not enough as the Internet continues to grow exponentially.

Wilson said the transition to IPv6, which is more efficient and more secure than its predecessor, was among the topics discussed at the four-day Singapore meeting that ended Thursday.

About ten percent of all global Internet traffic to Google, Facebook, and Yahoo! will use IPv6 by the end of this year, up from 3.0 percent currently, the Internet Society, an advisory panel, said on its website.

"This year is the convergence point where IPv6 starts to become a real thing," said Wilson, urging users to switch to the new protocol.

Each computer, tablet, mobile device and any other has a unique IP address to connect to the web.

But with seven billion people on the planet owning multiple devices, the IPv4 protocol restricts everyone from having a gadget with its own online address.

The situation has been equated to not having enough telephone numbers for every user, and if there are not enough Internet addresses, neighbours will have to start sharing which can slow things down.

IPv6 can allow "trillions and trillions of addreses, enough in theory to last indefinitely, as big as the Internet can possibly get," Wilson said.

"It might be a fair call to say that the transition is real and businesses need to start seriously considering their strategy," he said.

Explore further: Success in large-scale test of technology to solve IPv4 address space exhaustion issue

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User comments : 3

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verkle
not rated yet Mar 27, 2014
This transition is long overdue. Just like transitioning to a new OS, let's just do it, accept the few hiccups that come along with it, and get it over with.

CapitalismPrevails
not rated yet Mar 27, 2014
This transition is long overdue. Just like transitioning to a new OS, let's just do it, accept the few hiccups that come along with it, and get it over with.



Agreed, when will the transition to Linux every be complete? HTML5?
El_Nose
5 / 5 (1) Mar 27, 2014
IPv6, which came into effect in June 2012, allows for trillions of "IP" numbers or addresses, while IPv4 has room for only 4.3 billion


sorry techy here... thats just not true by a factor of say 24 ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE...

IPv6 can theoretically hold 2^128 IP addresses. As you're probably aware of, that's a huge number:

2^128 = 340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456

340 undecillion, 282 decillion, 366 nonillion, 920 octillion, 938 septillion, 463 sextillion, 463 quintillion, 374 quadrillion, 607 trillion, 431 billion, 768 million, 211 thousand 456

every human on the planet could have a 100 trillion ip6 addresses and we would still have tons of room.