The New Internet Protocol IPv6
Under the current Internet Protocol, “Internet Protocol 4” (IPv4), 4.3 billion individually assigned, unique IP addresses have been allocated. Due to the ever-growing global use of the Internet, the number of IPv4 addresses available no longer meets the rapidly increasing demand for new allocations.
This bottleneck situation was foreseen as early as 1990, leading the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to quickly start a project for the development of IPv4’s successor. By 1998 the first IPv6 standard was defined, and a gradual but necessary introduction of IPv6 was anticipated, in order to pre-empt an IPv4 bottleneck situation. IPv6, however, was rarely requested by customers and so the industry saw little need to encourage any “premature” IPv6 distribution. However, a few advocates of long-term planning, including Init7, but predominantly organizations such as the Swiss IPv6 Council, did not give up, and are the key contributing forces that have ensured that IPv6-enabled equipment and routing-protocol is available today.
The distribution of IPv4 addresses followed centrally from the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority IANA, which allocated blocks of addresses to five Regional Internet Registries (RIR):
- ARIN American Registry for Internet Numbers
- RIPE Reséaux IP Européens
- APNIC Asia Pacific NIC
- LACNIC Latin American and Caribbean Internet Adress Registry
- AFRINIC Africa NIC
In total, 256 blocks exist, each with a range of 16.777.216 addresses. The last five IPv4 blocks were distributed amongst the RiRs in February 2011, signaling the final exhaustion of the IANA’s global IPv4 pool.
The current distribution of IPv6 addresses follows in the same fashion, but unlike with IPv4, no shortage exists. This means that the allocation of addresses to businesses by Internet Service Providers is carried out relatively generously.
Init7 is the Swiss market leader in the distribution of IPv6 and thereby supports the fast, uncomplicated, and nationwide introduction of IPv6.
Contact us for IPv6 solutions!