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IANA Deploying IPv6 190

According to this Wired news article, IANA has begun to "roll out" IPv6. Though it doesn't go into specifics, one assumes this means that the three major IP registries will begin assigning IPv6 addresses. The article mentions another chicken and the egg problem: no IPv6 software (correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Linux have IPv6 software?), so there is no need for IPv6 addresses, and vice-versa. It also mentions every traffic light on the planet could have its own IP. Update: 07/16 02:48 by J : Dave Whitinger at LinuxToday sent a link to a mail which clarifies the situation a bit.
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IANA Deploying IPv6

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    I saw this poking around Apple's TIL:
    Question: What about IP version 6 (IPv6) support in Open Transport?
    Answer: IPv6 is [...blah blah blah...]

    IPv6 is being designed to respond to the limitations of IPv4 - including an upcoming shortage of new IP addresses - to allow for the continued expansion of the Internet and deployment on corporate networks. IPv6 also incorporates new functionality to provide security, multimedia support, and plug and play capabilities, features necessary to usher the Internet into the twenty-first century.

    At the October 1995 Networld+InterOp trade show, Apple and Mentat demonstrated a prototype of Internet Protocol Version 6 running on Open Transport. The demonstration showed the flexibility of the Open Transport environment - [...OT is wonderful, etc etc...]

    Apple and Mentat will continue to work together to ensure timely availability of IPv6 for Mac OS once the standard has been completed.
    I thought it was interesting anyway. I thought I remembered hearing IPv6 was in OT 2.0 already, but I couldn't find anything verifying it. In any case, OT is easy to extend, and by the time OS X hits, I'm sure the BSD folks will have upgraded their TCP/IP to v6.

    Another thing I recall hearing about IPv6 is an improved support for streaming media (since packets aren't well suited for it). I guess that means we'll see an explosion of useless 'webcasts' and a nearly endless amount of new porn sites! We'd probably be able to use IPv4 for another 30 years if the net weren't so crammed full of pointless crap (not that the ol' Internet Coke Machine or Coffee Maker were frivolous :)
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I ate it. Sorry.
  • Doh!! I'm a moron. IPv6 = 16 8 bit values.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Since all the comments seem to be more or less
    varients on the "Gee wiz that's alot of numbers"
    theme I figure I should add my own frivolous post.
    For a bit of a giggle check out the RFC for
    version 9 of our favorite protocol. :)
    http://www.cis.ohio-state.edu/htbin/rfc/rfc160 6.html
    AdamT (at work)
  • The switch-over to IPv6, when it finally happens, must be managed well.

    With the imminent introduction of DSL, together with set-top boxes, internet usage in the home is going to increase significantly, and the currentl limited supply of available IP addresses is a hindrance. Of course techniques such as IP masquerading have ensured that IPv4 numbers have lasted longer, but the limit is still approaching.

    Affordable equipment, possibly subsidised by the local/national Telco, available to all will soon be with us. Eventually a net connection will be as common as the telephone. Imagine millions of house-holds in every country with a connection.

    Whenever this is introduced, IPv6 must be chosen as the protocol. Implementation and switch-over must be well thought out, and on a scale NEVER seen before. It will make the Year 2000 problems of the present seem like a minor problem in comparison.

    I, however, can never see IPv6 being accepted. I have worked in the industry for around 10 years, and have seen numerous projects over-run or fail completly, mainly due to lack of truely technically competant staff. (I have even met a Firewall installer who did not know what an IP port was!). I can see chaos, particullarly if any point-click-drool Microsofties are involved. And don't let the suits run the project, either.

    Some of the previous comments here also go against one of my golden rules of computing - if you don't know what you're talking about, keep your mouth shut! Ingnorance leads to disaster.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    According to my Solaris book, this IPv4 address:

    would be valid in IPv6, and expressed as:


    And could be abbreviated as:


  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 15, 1999 @03:20PM (#1800029)
    IPv6 has 128-bit addressing - enough for every particle in the universe to have its own subnet. This was deliberate. IPv4 isn't really running out of addresses - it's just that IP addresses can't be given out of the whole pot. The address space must be subdivided in order to allow routers to do their job. The IPv6 address space was therefore made large enough that it can be assigned extremely sparsely, without running out of addresses at the subnet level.

    There's plenty of IPv6 software to go around, actually - in fact there are many implementations not only of the IPv6 stack, but of protocol layers to allow IPv6 and IPv4 stacks to interoperate. It's just that they're all in beta, and not very many vendors have announced them as products yet. But you can run Linux or *BSD on an IPv6 net today.

    In fact, there's a vigorous "6BONE" (like the MBONE) of IPv6-only hosts existing on the current IPv4 Internet via tunneling arrangements. The 6BONE is the proving ground of IPv6 interoperability and routing stuff.
  • >(I'm assuming that each MAC should have it's own unique ID number...)

    Actually, once I bought two cheap, no brand ethernet cards, and they both had the same MAC address (all A6's !!!) that was VERY annoying...
  • Don't be stupid. IP addresses are like phone numbers : they aren't allocated to people, just devices.
  • by hadron ( 139 )
    You usually get DNS entries free with ISPs. There will be no need for domain names unless you already need one.


  • Won't work though -- at least not with TCP. We'd have to invent something else that could cope with the latencies. Inter-Planetary Transmission Protcol? It could still be layered over IP, though.
  • every person is alotted say 50 ip's at birth along with your social security number or so. Corps can buy ip's in the current system.

    Not really a good idea. The whole point is that your IP addresses depend on where you're linked into the network. Trying to have portable IP addresses would but horrible load on the backbone routers.

    Ultimately you should be able to forget about IP addresses and rely on DNS pretty much exclusively -- especially with those 128 bits addresses which will be a PITA to type.

    Incidentally, this is why "phone number portability" is so stupid. The phone number should remain something that the switches can route by, just like an IP address. What we need is something like DNS for the phone system -- all phones have a little LCD display, maybe a little keypad. If you haven't got someone's number on quick dial, you can search on their name, and the system would search your local area first and give you a list of matches. Then you could expand geographically if req'd.
  • I don't know about the US, but hear in New Zealand the phone number hasn't had to be used for routing for about 10 years. The phone's real address is some obscure number the user will never see and the phone number you dial is just like a machine name, ie looked up.

    Ahh. Just after I posted the first comment I did wonder about that. In which case we could rearrange 'phone numbers to categorise by something more useful than (just) geographic area and call cost.. You could have different codes for personal, government and commercial numbers... All sorts of things..

  • Naturally, this is a pain in the arse, if not impossible, between different phone companies
    and/or area codes, but it should work with the same company and code (which is quite
    common 'round where I am in the US)

    Yes, I think BT do number portability here if you're staying within the same exchange area.

    The thing that worries me is that OFTEL seem to be about to force mobile companies to allow customers to take their number with them when they change companies. This seems a little stupid.

  • It's more than that, it's 128-bit. But not all the addresses will be "usable" right away; a vast portion of the address space (about 85% of it) is "reserved for future expansion." RFC 2373 [ohio-state.edu] details the addressing architecture, which they seem to have done a pretty good job of "future-proofing."


  • Because right now, of course, all traffic lights are totally standalone and not connected to any central control or monitoring system. The advent of IPv6 will clearly change this, opening Main Street USA to renegade crackers from the soviet union (the collapse was faked).

  • 16 bytes or 128 bits...

    Heh, 16 8 bit values, you just want to make things difficult don't you? :)

  • Incidentally, this is why "phone number portability" is so stupid. The phone number should remain something that the switches can route by, just like an IP address. What we need is something like DNS for the phone system -- all phones have a little LCD display, maybe a little keypad. If you haven't got someone's number on quick dial, you can search on their name, and the system would search your local area first and give you a list of matches. Then you could expand geographically if req'd.
    I don't know about the US, but hear in New Zealand the phone number hasn't had to be used for routing for about 10 years. The phone's real address is some obscure number the user will never see and the phone number you dial is just like a machine name, ie looked up.

    Hmm... I just asked someone who knows more than me (not quite my boss), the translation isn't done (in practice) until the `call' gets to the destination, but your phone number is still effectivly your machine name. The equivalent of your phones IP address is not user visable. The main way your dialed digits are used is for geographic routing: area code and (for NZ (7 digit local numbers, like US/Can)) a three digit switch number. The last four digits get converted to your phones physical address. Think of country level TLDs (eg .ca, .nz, .us, .uk, etc).

    Though this isn't 100% accurate, it's a good basic summarisation. Number Portability is just the stripping of the geographic routing. NP is actually already in heavy use: 0800 (free call) numbers are an execelent example.

  • I believe it's designed with such a huge space, so routers can be more efficient (ie, don't have to break apart subnets, etc.)
  • IPv6 users will be a small club initially.

    All I need to do is 1 kernel recompile (and probably update a few IP tools) :P. Thus is the power of Linux...

  • Posted by Assmodeus:

    ok. correct me if im wrong, but if a traffic light has an ip address...then that means that SOMEHOW its accessible from the outside world. would you really want someone to be able to "hack" the traffic lights in your neighborhood and play with them at their discretion??? just a thought... other than that i think its cool...

  • Posted by MaverickPl:

    Who gives a flying fick in Mercedes has a whole A class. It is not like you were going to get that or that they are runnign out of IPs. Also how do you know that they only use 1%? Maybe they have a huge network.

    Also they make a GREAT car and as long as they do that I really don't care what they do with their IP addresses as long as they don't buy them all. Also, I think that it is Diamler-Chrystler now. I will assume you were talking about Diamler (not sure if I am spelling it right.)
  • Posted by Hk_Silver:

    Here is a scary thought. I am almost scared to share this idea with the world becuase I might give someone an idea. What if everyone were assigned an IP address at birth. this would replace your Social Security Number.
    Just think about the horrible possiblities
  • Your not alone. I too remember ips. When your working in a lab that changes hourly. I know all the ips. I don't even have a DNS on many networks. I make up IPs as I see fit. We have to firewall the lab, to prevent my from messing up the rest of the company, not to keep intruders out.

  • I doubt anything would happen, even if that started occurring. Microsoft would find some way to wash their hands of all responsibility for it (as usual) and point the blame at the users.
  • Hmmm and you'll have to get your ISP and everyone up the chain to do the same

    Or just set up a tunnel (over IPv4) to the nearest router on the 6bone as is done now.

    Initially, there will be a lot of legacy routers around, and a lot of legacy systems (read Windows) that can't talk to an IPv6 number. For that reason, there will be many IPv6 servers with IPv4 aliases.

  • 'scr1pt k1ddi3s' have toolz to hack into your waffle iron. (Model 2? ;))

    So remember, ADSL connection == *NIX.

    I wonder if new microwaves will have blurbs like: 'It will be most good if you are to put wallfire between not-you and microwave if internet is your telephone' or something to that effect?

  • Isn't it 64bit? You could give an IP address to everything that uses electricity and have plenty left over.
  • Reverse DNS lookups has also been defined, but it is a HORRIBLE mess!!! You have to write out the full hex number, backwards, with a . between each number!
  • I don't think this will make routers simpler. If anything they will become more advanced to keep up with the large amounts of routes and routers on the Internet.

    Take for example BGP on a core router. I would not run this on anything with less than 128 MB of RAM today if you want the full routes (I have 256 in my 7206VXR). Imagine once IPv6 starts taking off. I would personally say that routers will get more complicated so as to store routing data in smaller forms in an OSPF kind of way.

    Granted you can make a router pretty simple using IPv4 or 6, but if that all anyone ever needed Ascend would only seel their P50's which are about the min I would go with. Also as speeds increase so must the chips and software tricks.

  • > Cisco allegedly has router OS upgrades that will allow their boxes to be used on an
    > ipv6 network.

    Strike allegedly. They have IPv6 code, but not in production code, only in experimental code.
  • They have already defined an AAAA record for IPv6 addresses in DNS. I'm not sure how they're going to do reverse DNS zones, though.. reverse DNS for IP addresses is much more challenging than the forward records are.

    IPv6 is very interesting stuff.. I spent a few weeks writing code for Ganymede that can do the encoding/decoding of IPv6 addresses.. hopefully people will be able to use Ganymede for IPv6 DNS management when the time comes.

  • Water doesn't actually get denser as it gets deeper, but rather the pressure increases. (I don't exactly understand quite how that works, but they tell me it does.) The differences between gasses and liquids is that liquids (and solids, for that matter) have constant density, while gasses change pressure with respect to volume and pressure. PV=nRT, for gasses
  • There is a rumor going around that Solaris8 will be IPv6 ready [sunhelp.org]. But if you want to play around with IPv6 on your solaris box, you are welcome to try [sun.com].

    Just so you don't think the commercial unices don't want to play with linux.

  • I've got all the IP numbers I need right here in my pants!

    ..sorry, I HAD to.. :)
  • The debian dist. kernel has got ipv6 enabled, and the tools and scripts are aware of it and initialize it...

    I don't think all daemons/apps are there yet, but the basic net tools have it.

    kind of suprised me when i ran ifconfig and saw:

    eth0 Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:40:05:A5:37:69
    inet addr: Bcast: Mask:
    inet6 addr: fe80::240:5ff:fea5:3769/10 Scope:Link
    RX packets:1054638 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
    TX packets:1724824 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
    collisions:0 txqueuelen:100
    Interrupt:11 Base address:0x6800

    is that ipv6 address random? hmmmm....

    Marques Johansson
  • "since most of the internet still uses Windows unfortuanly"

    The majority of what would be considered the internet runs on various flavors of Unix.

    I'll allow that the majority of web browsers are likely Windows based, but that means little since IPv6 provides backward compatibility for low end systems (read Windows).

  • don't forget the other planets when we inhabit them;)
  • Hmm...i'd like it if my monitor turned into a microwave as well...:)
  • by perry ( 7046 )
    It isn't quite true that v4 is not running out of addresses. It only has four billion, and even with totally efficient allocation there obviously wouldn't be enough for everyone on the planet to get onto the internet. Given that allocation can at best be a few percent efficient, you have a problem.

    IPv6 of course solves all this.
  • There is also data on applications and implementations on www.ipv6.org
  • The API issue is a bit funny. Unfortunately, lots of the v4 API made assumptions about address length and about there only being one address family in use at a time. The v6 API fixes this. There is an RFC that describes the suggested API in detail -- so far as I'm aware, most implementations to date have tried to follow it fairly closely.
  • Well, you can help! Get onto the 6bone, port open source applications, and pressure your ISP to offer native v6 service!
  • The protocol identifier was used by an experimental protocol that was never widely deployed.
  • The KAME people have ported a lot of open source apps already. Most of the better open source browsers have patch kits available.
  • No, it isn't random. Its what's known as a "link local" address. It is synthesized automatically from the universal link local prefix and your interface's MAC address. This allows all the usual "who am I anyway" protocols from IPv4 to be done over IPv6 directly instead of over raw link layer protocols. Its rather cool, actually.
  • by perry ( 7046 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @03:37PM (#1800069)
    Microsoft Research has a v6 stack for windows, and so does Trumpet Winsock. Windows users can run v6 any time they like.

    See www.ipv6.org if you want to track down versions for your favorite OS.
  • I vaugley remember a Slashdot article saying that robots are going to take over the Earth, so we'll let those bastards deal with it.
  • 'Incidentally, this is why "phone number portability" is so stupid. The phone number should remain something that the switches can route by, just like an IP address. What we need is something like DNS for the phone system'

    The phone number can be the DNS entry, and the telco can assign an IP address to it. You could then call me using the DNS entry of att://250.555.1212/FFFish (as opposed to my wife, @ att://250.555.1212/Crayola). Or you could use my current IPv6 address, of When I bugger off to another city, the DNS address (250.555.1212) would stay the same; but it'd be routed to another IP address.

    Just because a name is numeric doesn't make it an IP address instead of a DNS entry. (Or, rather, it's just convention that the DNS entry is alphabetic, not alphanumeric...)
  • by imp ( 7585 )
    >In molar units, there are about 5.6e14
    >moles of IP numbers in the IPv6 namespace.

    If we were talking about water, then 1M of water is 18g. So 1e15 moles of water would be 2e15g, which is 2e15cm^3 of water. This is 2e12L of water. Or a cube approx 1e5cm on a side, so we're talking about 1 cubic kilometer of water, give or take.

    Not a drop in the ocean, but still >> the number of atoms in the universe. :-)
  • As I understand it the first host that responds to the anycast is the host you communicate with. Besides the obvious router/DHCP/routing benefits... there is another use for anycast that I don't see discussed very much.

    We can finally get rid of crappy ass round robin DNS.

    Openstep/NeXTSTEP/Solaris/FreeBSD/Linux/ultrix/OSF /...
  • actually since the last 64 bits are reserved for hardware specific numbers, doesn't that limit the number of IP addys to 64 bits?

    (I'm assuming that each MAC should have it's own unique ID number...)
  • by Cato ( 8296 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @09:54PM (#1800075)
    Some confusion here :)

    - Unicast is when a packet goes to exactly one destination and is what IPv4 uses most of the time (e.g. for http etc)

    - Multicast is as konstant said, you send out one packet to a 'group address' and it gets replicated only where necessary - generally each link sees only one copy of each packet, so it's an efficient way to send audio, video or even files to a large audience. This is also in IPv4.

    - Anycast is new in IPv6 - as I understand it, it lets you specify that any of a set of hosts can get the packet (but not all of them, as in multicast). It's useful for lots of things such as load balancing across servers - not sure if it does topologically-distant load balancing but it would be handy if it does.

    One other misconception: IPv6 has two main features for class of service / quality of service, both in the IPv6 header:

    - Traffic Class - single byte, equivalent to the IPv4 Type of Service byte, carries the class of service - will be a diffserv codepoint (number) once this is standardised, as is happening quite fast. Same codepoints work over IPv4 and IPv6 networks. Typically you assign different codepoints to VoIP, mission-critical apps, web browsing, etc - many apps share the same CoS.

    - Flow Label - this is designed to make RSVP work better, allowing a single flow (e.g. ftp session) to be given a unique ID so that routers downstream of this label assignment can more quickly recognise (classify) packets in this flow (rather than looking at IP addresses, TCP/UDP port numbers, and IP protocol).

    For more information on QoS/CoS (though not IPv6 specific) see www.qosforum.org, or the www.orchestream.com links page.
  • by Cato ( 8296 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @11:07PM (#1800076)
    Certainly routing tables should be limited in size with IPv6, which is a good thing but unlikely to make packet forwarding faster.

    QoS I think is in the main header (Class byte and Flow Label). As for packet spoofing, IPv6 simply makes IPsec mandatory, whereas it is optional with IPv4 - however, this is an important step. Of course, IPsec means that much traffic is encrypted (potentially) making it harder to do QoS except by letting the host do its own CoS marking and/or RSVP reservations (which let you guarantee bandwidth end to end IF the network has RSVP enabled).

    The interesting stuff for Linux here is Linux-Diffserv and the Linux port of RSVPD, which enable the host to do CoS marking and RSVP reservations. However, unlike Win2000, the *nix world does not have a unified QoS API - some work to be done there for *nix to remain competitive IMO.

    There is a lot of work going on in the IETF around QoS, CoS, and policy (i.e. rules that govern which apps/users get which QoS/CoS). Werner Almesberger, the Linux Diffserv guy, is at the IETF this week (as I am) and gave a presentation at the Diffserv deployment BOF.

    Interestingly, Linux is way ahead of most OSs and routers in its Diffserv implementation, and apparently it can fill an OC-3 (155 Mbps optical) line while doing CBQ queuing (flexible allocation of bandwidth, see www.xedia.com for links), with 12,000 policy rultes. For those who are not in the CoS business, this performance is extremely impressive compared to some commercial routers - just buy a cheap headless PC and you have a $1000 access router with Diffserv CoS, which can also do firewalling, IPsec VPNs, etc.

    If anyone's doing trials of Diffserv and wants a tool to manage policy rules for CoS efficiently, email me :)
  • "The obvious mathematical breakthrough would be development of an easy way to factor large prime
    numbers." Bill Gates, The Road Ahead, Viking Penguin (1995)

    Tell ol' Bill that for a suitable sum I'll give him an algorithm that factors large prime numbers in linear time proportional to the size of the prime.

    (Or constant time, if time for transmission doesn't count..)
  • Something like 10 for every square angstrom on the surface of the planet. There's a whole lot more than 10 protons per angstrom of matter on the planet.
  • Recompile? Why indeed should we have to recompile? Why can't it be a modular driver such as the way filesystems are? I could be wrong, but I do believe That Other Operating System does have modular network drivers.

    /dev/tcp me baby.
  • Most of the internet USERS run windows. They have IP addresses, their machines have to be addressable, ergo they are part of the internet. Leaf nodes, to be sure, but internet regardless.
  • > Not really a good idea. The whole point is that your IP addresses depend on where you're linked into the network.

    Many companies already allocate a block of addresses for mobile clients, which could end up connecting to any modem pool. Basically that particular block is a VLAN, and often ends operating over a VPN, so your company is spared the routing headache.

    Imagine that, YOU having an IP address that designates YOU. Scary thought, eh?
  • >they aren't allocated to people, just devices.

    What's the difference?
  • Real men don't use dns. :P

    But seriously. I just remember the ip's of a lot of the boxen I connect to. Guess that will have to stop.
  • Ok, I don't what that subject means exactly, I just liked the battle cry "hack the lights!!!"

    If some cr/hacker dares to break into my toaster and change my settings though, I'll be pissed.

    Call me old fashioned, but some things don't need their own IPs.

    Now, off to firewall my bread maker,
  • I seemed to read something like that, too... back in 1996. That in a transitional period, IPv4 should map to IPv6 via the notation 0::, for instance.
  • You have to laugh at those poor saps who said the internet was just a passing fad.

    Happy Graduation day, internet!
    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • It's not random at all. If you look closely, you'll see that the inet6 address was generated
    by wrapping an IPv6 compatible address around
    your MAC address.

    I believe (if I recall correctly) that IPv6
    has generated a site-local address (sort of
    equivalent to IPv4 private addressing) out of
    your MAC.
  • An ipv6 address is a hexadecimal address separated
    by colons.

    It looks like:

    3ffe:1cf8:ff01:0:0:0:0:1 or:


    where the first 64 bits is the network and
    the last 64 bits is the host.
  • by olmy ( 11401 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @03:31PM (#1800089) Homepage
    According to the allocation draft document, http://www.arin.net/IPv6.txt, the 3 Registries
    won't be initially assigning IP addresses to end users or sites. Instead, they'll be making sub-delegations to TLA registries (a sub-continental registry that will make allocations after the 1st 16 bit boundary of an
    ipv6 subnet). So, ARIN, APNIC, and RIPE will begin
    issuing TLA's to the TLA registries, who in turn,
    will begin making allocations at the NLA level level. These NLA assignments will go to large ISP's. Assignments to individual sites and end-users will be carved out of these NLA assignments.
    The last 64 bits is a hard boundary reserved for
    the host ID (based on the next-generation EUI-64
    MAC address).

    TLA: Top-Level Aggregator
    NLA: Next-Level Aggregator
    SLA: Site-Level Aggregator
  • Part of Microsoft Research's stack is a DLL which allows Internet Explorer (4.0 only) talk to IPv6 websites. I've tried it out, and it worked quite well. Still needs some work, but it will get there.

    Also, there is a site called "Freenet6" (www.freenet6.net) which offers free, web setup based IPv6 tunnels for both Linux and NT. It's not a subnet (so you can't use it as a route through a Linux system), but it does allow testing of end user application. I've setup addresses for both a NT and Linux machine and the service works great. Now, I just need a few more applications to play with.


  • An easier way than 6bone for testing client implementations is through Freenet6 (www.freenet6.net). It uses a web form method to get a tunnel assigned that will work with Linux or NT machines. It's only an end of address (you can't use it as the front for a router), but it works great for testing the end user implementation. It allowed me to get IPv6 up and connected on Linux system here.

    There are instructions for setting up the Linux IPv6 support at http://www.bieringer. de/linux/IPv6/IPv6-HOWTO/IPv6-HOWTO.html [bieringer.de]. I've followed it as far as updating my net-tools and traceroute and then hooked up the Freenet6 tunnel. With that, I've been able to FTP out to some IPv6 only sites for testing. Works great!


  • Let me pass along two links.

    The first, http://www.bieringer. de/linux/IPv6/IPv6-HOWTO/IPv6-HOWTO.html [bieringer.de], contains detailed instructions for updating a Linux system to IPv6.

    The second, http://www.freenet6.net/ [freenet6.net], is an automated service for getting a tunnel to the 6Bone. This is an end station address (can't be used for a router), but it lets you test the client applications for talking to anywhere on the 6Bone.


  • Hmmm and you'll have to get your ISP and everyone up the chain to do the same....
    IPv6 will only come online properly when everyone has it. Perhapes IANA should set a date by which all ISPs (and their customers) should be IPv6-Ready and then switch it on overnight....
  • Mind you, the idea of somebody being able to hack into my milk is a little, er, worrisome...

    Didn't you just say your milk is running Linux - No worries !! :o)

  • by mcc ( 14761 )
    what worries me here is that this really won't work well without a total revisal of the DNS system.

    it's ok now to have a pay-for-everything DNS system, since numeric IPs are sort-of-possible to remember and keep track of. But it will be hard to keep track of things like 3ffe:1cf8:ff01:0:0:0:0:1, especially once they get more complex.

    have they thought about the usability-by-humans implications of IPv6? do they just expect everyone to pay for a domain, or do they expect a bunch of equivilents of *.ml.org to appear?

    Then again, the entire DNS system will have to be revised to hold IPv6 numbers anyway, so setting a completely new system up shouldn't be too hard.. hopefully they'll do the dns thing _right_ this time. :P
  • I've heard that there are enough IPv6 addresses that every proton on the face of the planet could have it's own.
    I want IP addresses for all *my* protons... :)
  • It's 128bits... and thinking that 32bits is 4 billion and every bit doubles the number of values... that's crap loads of IP addresses!
    • IPv1 to IPv3: sabotaged during draft
    • IPv4: grew old and obsolete
    • IPv5: mysteriously disappeared 24 hours after specced
    • IPv6: The last of the Internet Protocols, our last best hope for connection
  • by Sloppy ( 14984 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @06:38PM (#1800099) Homepage Journal

    Yeah, it will be called "Burnt Orifice."

  • Hate being finicky, but you can't really do that, but you can for certain cases use 6 x 16bit hex + 4 x 8bit decimal, eg:

  • If it's firewalled, why does it need a reserved IP address? Even style addresses should work.
  • "... eventually toasters and microwaves."

    Reminds me of that bit that they presented
    at some convention or another in the UK, the
    combination television, microwave, and
    internet-capable computer... so you could "make
    a pizza, browse the web, and catch up on the
    latest episode of Friends".

    Dear god. When will the hurting stop?

    ...mmmm, toast.

  • The problem isn't lack of support in kernels, lots of operating systems can support Ipv6, the problem is lack of things like browsers that support IPv6. Bind does, lynx doesn't. That is the problem, all those network applications that have to be made IPv6 aware.
  • and I'm sure all the next updates of all the major OS's will too...

    They showed an IPv6 version of traceroute running at WWDC as a demo. They ping/traced to the dev centers in Japan just to prove it worked... I'm sure it'll be widely accepted once all the software is ready.
  • Doesn't matter. When we get tied into the Galactic Internet we'll either have to convert to their protocol or become a Bitnet-like backwater.

  • It also depends on the type of water. Salt water (as commonly found in the ocean) is more dense than fresh water.

    (That's why, in case there are any fellow scuba divers hanging around here, you need to give yourself more weight when diving in the ocean; salt water is denser, so you don't sink as easy.)

  • With the exception of area codes, moving numbers so long as you are inside the same phone company should be very easy. Here's why:

    Assuming all phone switches work basically the same (user 1 picks up, dials, switch plugs in user 2, hangup, repeat) then your "extension" (phone number") is really tied to a port on a card in a box somewhere. SO, when you move, they swap the port numbers.

    I.E. Where I work, ext. 228 is port A0107, for box A, card 1, port 7. Now, say I change offices, but don't want to change extensions? My new office is prewiered to port A0412. Quick issue of "cha ext 228" command, tab-tab A0402, "SAVE" (enter) and viola, i've moved.

    Naturally, this is a pain in the arse, if not impossible, between different phone companies and/or area codes, but it should work with the same company and code (which is quite common 'round where I am in the US)

  • by cambyses ( 19658 ) <daniel_e_harvey@hotmail.com> on Thursday July 15, 1999 @03:52PM (#1800109) Homepage
    IPv0 is reserved v1-3 are unassigned IPv4 is in use now IPv5 is the internet stream protocal. RFC's 1340 and 1700 might help. RFC 1819 covers version 2 of the internet stream protocal which is of course IPv5. Damn im smart.
  • For those of you stuck using Winblowz, Trumpet [trumpet.com] has announced Winsock 5.0 which does support IPv6 in the Win95 / 98 / NT environment, along with several improvements to standard IPv4.

  • It is 128 bits of address space. I think the format is FEDC:BA98:7654:3210:FEDC:BA98:7654:3210, i.e. 8 blocks of 16 bits each.
  • I was suprised to see that many applications have IPv6 patches. Is the IPv6 API different from the regular IPv4 sockets API?

    Or are the changes just to deal with incompatibilities like the colon seperater in IPv6 addresses conflicting with URLs?
  • Don't you just use the normal socket calls for ipv6 but with a different sockaddr structure? Or is there more to it that this?
  • hehe ipv4 means IP version 4 its just a coinsidence that the version numbers and # of bit values happen to be the same.
  • Yerk.. I can just imagine when everything is networked and all the 'scr1pt k1ddi3s' have toolz to hack into your waffle iron. (Model 2? ;))

    Especially since, unfortunately, a lot of these things will be running Wince. Maybe they'll realise there's a problem once all these houses start getting burnt down by hacked kitchen appliances. :) Anyway..

  • by whee ( 36911 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @03:25PM (#1800128)
    "As more and more devices connect to the Net -- computers, handhelds, set-top boxes, and, eventually, toasters and microwaves -- all will need unique identifiers."
    woohoo! now I can finally telnet to my neighbor's toaster and burn his toast!
  • by DzugZug ( 52149 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @03:35PM (#1800137) Journal
    What happened to IPv5?
  • What I need is a network address for my pants. That way, I can discreetley use my wireless handheld information appliance to check whether or not I remembered to zip up my trousers without having to look down and announce to the world "Hey! I don't have the mental capacity to remember if I zipped up my pants or not!" IPv6 will usher in a new era of subtle etiquette, to be sure.
  • by Pseudonym ( 62607 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @05:15PM (#1800148)

    If you're just using normal (stream or datagram) sockets, the interface isn't very different. The main issues are that you're now in the AF_INET6 domain, and sockaddr_* structs for IPv6 have a different address layout. Apart from that, your code should be pretty much the same.

    You can avoid having to worry about this by using the POSIX getaddrinfo() function, but sadly it's not available everywhere yet.

  • by konstant ( 63560 ) on Thursday July 15, 1999 @04:59PM (#1800151)
    As someone else noted, IPv4 is nowhere near exhausting the supply of IP addresses. The problem is really that the IP#s have been subdivided into hierarchies A-E:

    Class A: For big monster domains like ARPAnet
    2^7 domains*16 million hosts each
    Class B: For medium domains like your ISP
    2^14 domains*65536 hosts each
    Class C: For subnets and labs and stuff
    2^22 domains*255 hosts each
    Class D: For subnet-only multicast
    Class E: nobody ever really used this

    Trouble was that everybody wanted something bigger than C, but didn't really need all the addresses in B. So a lot were wasted every time a B class was assigned. There are some kludgy solutions like masking and sewing together lots of C's into one bigger domain, but they all are horribly complicated and a waste of brainpower as anybody who has ever taken a networking course can attest :) So one problem addressed by IPv6 was the expanded IP# values. Lots of room for divisibility.

    A second problem was that IPv4 was basically all about sending text from one spot to another, and there was a lack of optimization for high-prio data and multicast data like streaming video. The reason you'll see a lot of patches for IPv6 stuff is not that it isn't backwards compatible with IPv4 so much as that IPv6 has lots of cool features people will want to take advantage of. For example, you can mark the priority of your packets on a scale of (I think?) 1-5, with servers optionally enforcing these values. When a server was in the process of getting slashdotted for example (or some other DoS attack ;) it would know which packets were important and which could be dropped safely. You'd probably have to pay extra for high-priority transmissions, which means as an added benefit that crackers would have a harder time taking down machines they didn't like by packet flooding them or whatever.

    As another example, the IPv6 packet structure basically lets you chain "extensions" onto your packet, giving you a sort of dynamic packet size.

    Another biggie is internet-wide multicasting. A group of people receiving the same streaming video wouldn't have to be sent separate copies from the originating server. It could send one and have intermediate routers spawn copies.

    A lot of the pain of setting up a new host is also eliminated. There's some kind of dynamic search-and-allocate thing built in that I don't remember well enough to discuss. Something about new hosts asking their neighbors for a globally unique IP address and eventually getting one.

    There's more. Get Tanenbaum's book on networking and find out for yourself.

  • A scientific breakdown:

    If you assume that the radius of the universe is 15 billion light-years, the volume of the universe (assuming it's spherical) would then be 1.419e23 cubic meters. Given IPv6 has 2^128 addresses, this corresponds to one IPv6 address for every 3.5178e31 cubic meters.

    This might not sound like a lot of addresses for the corresponding space. However:

    Take the volume of the Solar System to be a sphere centred on the Sun with a radius equal to Pluto's orbit (5,913,520,000,000 meters). The volume of the Solar System is thus 1.08277e38 cubic meters. Using the above figure, we find that for every Solar System-sized chunk of the universe would get just over three million IPv6 addresses. Since the universe is not jam-packed with solar systems, the number of IPv6 addresses per solar system would correspondingly increase. This increase depends on how many solar systems there are, of course, and how densely packed they are. One could easily assume that each solar system would get on the order of 10^18 IPv6 addresses (i.e. there's one solar system for every 3e11 solar system-sized chunk of the universe), which is about 200 million times more IP addresses than the Earth currently has with IPv4.


    IPv6 should provide enough addresses for the known universe. However, because it's always better to be safe than sorry, it is the recommendation of this researcher that IPv8 (2^256 addresses) be implemented before any serious space travel is to be undertaken.
  • Yes, Linux 2.2 has IPv6, but you have to enable it. You probably have to update some net tools as well. Check out the 6bone [6bone.net] web site. 6bone is IPv6 tunnelled over IPv4. There's also a registry there for IP addresses, thought perhaps that'll be one the way out now.
  • Yes, Linux has ipv6 applications (although the article didn't mention applications... just browsers and routers). In fact there is a how-to for getting your Linux box to speak ipv6 (however limited it may be).

    In order to use ipv6 you will need to add libraries, upgrade to glibc 2.1 and upgrade your BIND, telnet, and finger daemons. There are also patches available to INN.

    You can see the how-to (written by Eric Osborne) at http://www.wcug.wwu.edu/ipv6/faq/.

    I don't know of any browsers now available for ipv6 but I bet Netscape and MS will be racing to provide them. Cisco allegedly has router OS upgrades that will allow their boxes to be used on an ipv6 network.

"The C Programming Language -- A language which combines the flexibility of assembly language with the power of assembly language."