NFWARE Blog

What is IPv6?

6/11/2018
What is Internet Protocol Version 6?

By the mid-1990s, IPv6 was developed as an IPv4 replacement. IPv6 (Internet Protocol version 6) is a new version of IP protocol designed to solve problems that the previous version (IPv4) encountered by using an address length of 128 bits rather than 32. The protocol was developed by IETF.

IPv6 was specifically designed to solve address space exhaustion. Experts began to point out concerns about the exhaustion problem even in the 1980s. In addition, shortly after the launch of IPv4, its limitations in terms of scalability and capability became apparent. IPv4 was in need of some add-ons, such as ICMP and ARP, to work. The depletion of the IPv4 address space was the motivating factor for the transition to IPv6. As Africa, Asia and other regions of the world gained more and more connection to the global Internet, a shortage of IPv4 addresses became an issue. The demands on the Internet were growing, and IPv6 responded better than the previous version.

IPv6 address space will be allocated by the IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority), which has regional representatives who deal with issuing IP addresses in their areas. IANA is able to redistribute address space at any time if errors are made in allocation.

How fast is ipv6 adoption?

According to Google's open statistics about IPv6 adoption, the percentage of users that have accessed Google through IPv6 has reached 25.56%. Based on these statistics, it could be stated that the world is gradually moving towards transition to IPv6.
The Google chart above shows countries where IPv6 is more widely deployed (the darker the green, the greater the deployment)

The most active countries using IPv6 protocol are Belgium (53.71%), Germany (40.16%), India (36.81%) and Greece (36.72%). The United States (34.14%), Uruguay (31.93%) and Malaysia (32.03%) are slightly behind with Canada, France, Finland, Brazil, the UK, Estonia and even Peru following. In the CIS, IPv6 is almost never used. Furthermore, it is important to note that Google has a weak presence in China and information regarding IPv6 adoption in China is not relevant.

What is The Difference Between IPv6 and IPv4?

The transition to IPv6 is inevitable as IPv6 has some advantages over IPv4. For more information, please see IPv4 limitation details.

Advantages of IPv6 over IPv4:

• More efficient routing without packet fragmentation
• Integrated Quality of Service (QoS) technology, which identifies delay-sensitive packets
• Built-in IPsec support (optional use of IPsec)
• Autoconfiguration of addresses to simplify network administration
• Improved header structure with lower processing costs
• Increased data security

Why not just switch to IPv6? The answer is cost. It takes a great deal of money and time to upgrade all the servers, routers and switches that depend only on IPv4. Despite the problems associated with the transition to a new version of Internet Protocol, this is an important and significant step for everyone, without exception. The transition to IPv6 is inevitable. It proceeds slowly, though, because the benefits of innovation are not obvious, at the moment, for most users. The first to come onboard are those countries where the shortage of addresses is felt the most acutely. In the meanwhile, we have to stick to IPv4 and NAT technology that extends ipv4 while enabling IPv6.
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