IPv6… the Internet Dragon Stirred Under Its Shell

By Yves Poppe
Yves Poppe

At Cisco Networkers in Barcelona earlier this week, some of us saw a dragon try to wiggle out of its shell, provided you connected in IPv6 that is. A smile to Kame, the turtle which only danced under a IPv6 caress.

Networkers 2009 saw more than 3000 attendants and a good complement of IPv6 presentations highlighted by a high powered plenary panel on the status of IPv6. It was chaired by Pat Calhoun, Cisco CTO, with outside participation from Google, Archrock, Spacenet, the European Commission, Free.fr( 3) and Tata Communications.

Anything to remember from all this IPv6 talk early in this New Year? Well, if you turn it on, they come, both end-users and traffic that is. Since Free turned on IPv6 on their Freebox last year in France, more than 200,000 of their subscribers activated it. Google sees growing numbers of IPv6 searches, ISP's see growing IPv6 traffic…

Granted, it's still a trickle compared to IPv4, but the chances to see the internet facing collapse when running out of IPv4 addresses or become clogged with NAT-plaque, are receding. A growing number of ISP's are upgrading their networks to assure the continuing health of the internet and their revenues, content is on its way as are new green field application domains. Judging from the numbers who attended the IPv6 sessions this week, not too many really want to stay behind that much longer.

We have not yet seen the full power of the Internet Dragon, but this week, it was stirring under its shell.

By Yves Poppe, Director, Business Development IP Strategy at Tata Communications. (Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in these articles are solely those of the author and are not in any way attributable to nor reflect any existing or planned official policy or position of his employer in respect thereto.)

Related topics: IP Addressing, IPv6