NFWARE BLOG

Carrier Grade NAT - A next level of NAT

3/15/2019
Carrier Grade NAT otherwise known as Large Scale NAT (LSN) is the next level of NAT development that allows operators to extend the use of the IPv4 address space and facilitates a smooth migration to IPv6 addressing.
To understand why Carrier Grade Network Address Translation, also known as Large Scale NAT (LSN) has become a must-have solution and how it works, it is essential to know the primary reason for the emergence of the technology. First, it is necessary to clarify what is meant by "IPv4 and IPv6" because these two protocols are closely related to NAT.

What is wrong with iPv4?

There are already about 4.3 billion IPv4 addresses in use in the world. However, today that number is being stretched; no one expected such a rapid growth in consumers over just two decades. In addition, the emergence of this problem is mainly due to the widespread use of mobile devices with the number constantly growing. For more information, see IPv4 exhaustion details.

IPv4 is the fourth version of IP (Internet Protocol), it is the basis of the Internet, and establishes the rules for the functioning of computer networks on the principle of packet exchange. This protocol is responsible for establishing a connection between network nodes (computers, servers, mobile devices, etc.) based on IP addresses.

The global address space is managed by the American non-profit organization IANA, as well as five regional Internet registrars (ARIN, APNIC, AfriNIC, LACNIC, and RIPE NCC) responsible for assigning IP addresses to end users and local Internet registrars in certain territories. In early 2011, IANA allocated the remaining blocks of address space to regional operators. Then the regional registrars predicted that the addresses would be exhausted within the next five years. LACNIC and ARIN were among the first regional operators to declare the complete exhaustion of free IPv4 addresses. We decided to address this topic and see how this problem has been solved.

What is the alternative to IPv4?

By the mid-1990s, IPv6 was developed as a replacement for IPv4. IPv6 is the next generation of IP. The main advantage of the IPv6 protocol is the increased size of the address from 32 bits to 128 bits, which gives an almost inexhaustible supply of unique IP addresses.

So why not just switch to IPv6? The main reason is the cost. Updating all servers, routers and switches that all this time depended only on IPv4 requires a lot of money and time.

Network Address Translation

NAT (Network Address Translation) is a mechanism in TCP / IP networks that allows you to replace your local address with a white (public) address.

The main goal of NAT is to save public addresses. In addition, dynamic NAT, the second NAT type that translates one internal address to an external one from the provided range, can protect the local network and its devices from intrusion.

NAT allows the router to determine which services are behind the router and must be accessible from the Internet so that users can use these services from there. In simple terms, this mechanism allows all local network devices (computers, tablets, smartphones) to use a single IP address of the external interface for connection to the Internet.
Carrier Grade NAT

Carrier Grade Network Address Translation, also known as Large Scale NAT (LSN) is the next level of NAT development that allows operators to extend the use of the IPv4 address space, serving a growing number of concurrent connections and facilitating a smooth migration to IPv6 addressing.

To put it simply, Carrier Grade NAT pulls the public IPv4 addresses away from the customer site, where their multiplexing capacity is not efficiently exploited, to outside the centralized Carrier Grade Nat , where many customer networks can share a single public IPv4 address. The solution is designed for Internet providers and telecom operators but is also suitable for replacing NAT devices in corporate networks.

Carrier Grade NAT provides the most transparent way to use NAT because it includes features like Endpoint Independent Mapping (EIM), Endpoint Independent Filtering (EIF), and Hairpinning, and allows smooth migration to IPv6. Moreover, with additional features and capabilities, Carrier Grade NAT is becoming the most effective solution to the IPv4 exhaustion problem. In comparison with alternative solutions, Carrier Grade NAT is cost-effective and scalable and there is no risk of facing «grey» and «black» IP addresses.
Carrier-Grade NAT, carrier nat, cgn network, large scale nat,
Carrier Grade NAT
Carrier Grade Nat Modes: NAT44

NAT44 translates private IPv4 addresses to public IPv4 addresses. This translation is necessary to save public IPv4 addresses. The diagram illustrates how NAT44 works.
NAT44, IPV4 Network, IPv4 Server, Carrier Grade Nat
Carrier Grade Nat Modes: NAT64

NAT64 translates IPv6 addresses to IPv4 addresses. This technology requires additional functionality of DNS 64. Moreover, NAT64 replaces NAT-PT, and only works if an IPv6 device initiates a connection. This allows IPv6 addressing equipment to think that it works on an IPv6 network even though it works with IPv4 equipment and vice versa. NAT64 technology can solve the problem of providing IPv6 services on the provider's network, as well as the problem of lack of IPv4-addresses.
NAT64, IPV6 Server, Carrier Grade Nat
Other terms related to Carrier Grade Nat

  • NAT44
  • NAT444
  • NAT464
  • NAT64
  • DNS64
  • NAPT
  • NAT66

Why NFWare Carrier Grade NAT

NFWare Virtual Carrier Grade NAT is based on cutting-edge scientific research and next-generation computer networks. It's a software application providing Carrier Grade Nat functions with the same performance level as hardware that is not only cost-effective and flexible solution for extending IPv4 usage but also providing a smooth migration to IPv6 infrastructure.

NFWare has already helped a lot of customers that deployed NFWare Virtual Carrier Grade Nat to decrease the CAPEX and improve the flexibility of the network, to achieve guaranteed high-quality service for their subscribers, to make their IPv6 migration strategy successful, and to solve the problem of IPv4 address exhaustion.

Still have any questions? Let us help!

We know - learning all terms can be overwhelming. Let us make it simple for you.

We've been working with Carrier Grade Nat technology for five years now. We will help you to navigate through all technical details and to understand if Virtual Carrier Grade Nat is right for you.
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