Migrating to IPv6 May Take Another Ten Years

This point of view was expressed by the representative of the RIPE NCC Internet registrar Marco Hogewoning (Marco Hogewoning). However, some members of the IT community found this forecast overly optimistic. We discuss the opinions of experts and tell how the implementation of IPv6 is going.

/ Unsplash / Markus spiske

Address Situation

At the end of November last year, the RIPE Internet registrar in charge of Europe and Asia, reported about exhausting the last block of IPv4 addresses. Five years ago, a similar situation occurred with american arin. Other registrars also share their latest resources.

Many experts – for example, IT journalist and editor of PC Pro, Darien Graham-Smith – urge make the transition to IPv6 as soon as possible to forget about the problem of lack of addresses for at least a million years.

How long can migration take

The protocol of the new generation is still not widely distributed, despite the fact that since its inception global launch more than eight years have passed. Geoff Huston, Head of Research, APNIC Internet Registrar notesthat recently, the speed of implementation of IPv6 has slowed down. According to W3Techs, a year ago IPv6 used 14.3% of sites, today this figure increased only 2%.

About what else we write in our blog on Habré:

  • How is the implementation of DNS-over-HTTPS
  • Provider’s work: a selection of materials on protocols, IT and network infrastructure
  • Unusual and quite obvious factors affecting the traffic of corporate networks and the work of providers

But a number of experts are convinced that soon the situation will begin to change. For example, by according to Marco Hohevoninga from RIPE NCC, this procedure will take another 5-10 years. He is convinced that this time is enough to get rid of the need for dual-stack.

According to him, government organizations must migrate to IPv6 first – this is one of the factors hindering the development of the protocol and forcing backward compatibility with IPv4. But some consider the timelines set by Marco to be rather optimistic.

Another point of view

Representative of the international organization Internet Society Mat ford (Mat Ford) and some residents Hacker News notes that one should not expect large-scale migration in the near future. Internet service providers work successfully even in conditions of IPv4 shortage – for example, they buy vacant addresses on specialized sites.

/ Unsplash / Markus spiske

Migration is also hindered by technical difficulties, especially in large networks. For example, the game development company SIE Worldwide Studios introduced IPv6 for seven years. But in the end, abandoned the project, as they were not able to completely get rid of the legacy of IPv4.

Another reason slowing down the transition to the new protocol is that engineers still find bugs related to IPv6. For example, at the end of 2019, one of the Australian network providers had to stop IPv6 testing. The reason is mistake in the Cisco ASR routers firmware, which caused the DHCP process to fail. To fix the problem, I had to reboot the router, which affected not only IPv6 subscribers, but everyone else.

It turns out that simply expanding the address pool is not enough to quickly switch to a new generation protocol – at least you should not expect this in the next decade.

Materials from our corporate blog:

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