IPv6 Internet has launched, are you ready?

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You might be forgiven for thinking that the Internet is pretty much the same today as it was yesterday, and it is… With one very important difference. From today 1% of the Internet will be using IPv6 (Internet Protocol version 6).

For years we’ve all been using IPv4, but we’ve used up all 4.3 billion IP addresses, there simply aren’t any more to give out. A year ago they ran a test, from today they’ve turned on IPv6 and it’s here to stay.

IPv6 gives access to trillions of new IP addresses which should be enough regardless of how many smartphones and other devices we acquire in the future. I’ve tried to look at the numbers but they have so many noughts on the end that they’re incomprehensibly big, suffice to say if I gave one IPv6 address to every grain of sand in the world there would be enough IP addresses left over for the rest of the world’s 7 billion population to each do the same.

Four of the most popular websites on the Internet – Google, Facebook, Microsoft Bing, and Yahoo! have all switched over to IPv6 for the relatively few people whose ISP has upgraded and have new IPv6 routers installed. For the rest of us it’ll be business as usual with everything running on good old IPv4 and most websites will continuing to offer their services on IPv4 for many years into the future

We’ve been looking at the situation for Tamebay and we’re still waiting for some of our software vendors to finish updating their code. We’ll make sure that regardless of whether you’re on IPv4 (as I am!), or if you’ve switched over to IPv6, that you can still see Tamebay in the future.

If you want to find out whether your own computer and Internet connection are ready then you can test your IPv6 connectivity to check if you can still see the Internet (well, no need to test – obviously you can as you’re reading this, but go on, take the test anyway! ;-))


World IPv6 Day – 8th June, 2011

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