June 2011
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Say goodbye to 192.168.129.x

Data Center, courtesy Wikimedia

Data Center, courtesy Wikimedia

Happy IPv6 day!

Today, June 8th is the day the major internet companies like Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Verizon, Microsoft and a few others migrate to IPv6 for a 24 hour test.  The migration to IPv6 will eventually be permanent as the number of addresses available for IPv4 is running low.  Considering that there are about 4,000,000,000 IPv4 addresses, that is sort amazing.

IPv6 addresses will look substantially different than the IPv4 example used in the title of this post.  A typical IPv6 address looks something like this:  2001:0db8:85a3:0000:0000:8a2e:0370:7334.  In 32 bit, that format can generate 340 undecillion unique number sets, or 340,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 written in non-scientific notation.  Most new operating systems, routers, and switches come with IPv6 protocols installed.  IPv4 and IPv6 can operate side by side and often do.  That is the good news.  The bad news; much if not all of the inside IP addressing schemes and subnetting will not work with IPv6.  Even so, it may not be necessary to rebuild entire networks using IPv6 until some sort of major upgrade or replacement.  IPv4 will work well into the future.

From a user standpoint, the transition should be transparent.  For IT guys, the change means typing in a few extra digits when configuring an outside IP address.  Networking bubbas may have their hands full.

One advantage, depending on one’s point of view, of IPv6 is that internal IP address schemes will not be needed, theoretically.  Thus, for example, a toaster or other appliance can communicate over power line to the cable modem, which will then establish an IP tunnel to the toaster manufacturer or some other party of interest.  Smart electric meters also have this capacity and use it to communicate directly with the utility company.

Homeplug computer network

Homeplug computer network

From the standpoint of IP streaming audio, IPv6 is more efficient than v4 in multicast operations.  This will hopefully reduce latency somewhat in web streaming audio.


A pessimist sees the glass as half empty. An optimist sees the glass as half full. The engineer sees the glass as twice the size it needs to be.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
~1st amendment to the United States Constitution

Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.
~Benjamin Franklin

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. To be your own man is hard business. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.
~Rudyard Kipling

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes the freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers
~Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, Article 19

...radio was discovered, and not invented, and that these frequencies and principles were always in existence long before man was aware of them. Therefore, no one owns them. They are there as free as sunlight, which is a higher frequency form of the same energy.
~Alan Weiner

Free counters!