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IPv6 is now the default

RFC 6540: IPv6 Support Required for All IP-Capable Nodes

This new RFC basically says that vendors can no longer consider IPv6 as an optional feature. If you say it supports 'IP' you better include IPv6.

The RFC specifically calls out these best practices:

  • New IP implementations must support IPv6.
  • Updates to current IP implementations should support IPv6.
  • IPv6 support must be equivalent or better in quality and functionality when compared to IPv4 support in a new or updated IP implementation.
  • New and updated IP networking implementations should support IPv4 and IPv6 coexistence (dual-stack), but must not require IPv4 for proper and complete function.
  • Implementers are encouraged to update existing hardware and software to enable IPv6 wherever technically feasible.

You: If you haven't started using IPv6 in your environment I highly recommend you take the time to educate yourself: Read a book, learn how Google did it, or sign up for the excellent IPv6 training at PICC.

Your vendors: When talking with vendors do not treat IPv6 as a "would be nice". Inform them that anything you buy this year must be IPv6 capable and can't have worse performance than IPv4. New network gear and software purchased this year will probably be in your network until 2020 or longer. If you don't think IPv6 will be in your environment this year, you have to agree it will be by 2020.

Your boss: If you need help explaining this to your boss read this fine article on IPv6 migrations (The "introduction" section is all background and history, after that is all the advice.) TLDR version: Start from your ISP to your external gateway, then work your way in enabling IPv6 carefully at each step.

Lastly... if you want a fun starter project, get it enabled at your house either via your ISP or get a free tunnel.

Posted by Tom Limoncelli in IPv6

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2 Comments | Leave a comment

Great news. BTW, link to RFC is broken.

The fun of it is that just today I saw a coworker wearing a t-shirt with something like this on its back: "I believe in Santa Claus, fairies, goblins, IPv6, and DNSSEC".

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