Thursday, May 05, 2011
Georgian College has been working toward the IPv6 address protocol for the past few months and is now close to completing the migration.
According to a recent itWorld Canada report, the academic institution should be ready to participate in the upcoming World IPv6 Day. The team developing the college's advanced network infrastructure has had to overcome challenges to get to the point where IPv6 is possible, but it has done so and can confidently comply with the new protocol.
Steve Benoit, IT manager for Georgian College, told the news source that the company made great strides toward IPv6 in what was essentially a two-month sprint. Now, the institution's IPv6-compatible website should be operational within a week or so.
Part of the college's success in making the migration possible was the state of its current infrastructure. Many networking devices on the market are already IPv6 compatible and Georgian College was lucky enough to have some of those installed already.
"We found out that a lot of our stuff was [IPv6] capable," Benoit told the news source. "We just needed to configure it and understand it. As we looked at our stuff, we already had IPv6, the edge router was v6 capable, the DNS server popped up an [IPv6] address, it was totally coincidental."
While having IPv6-ready equipment on hand made the transition easier, there were still challenges. Benoit told the news source that the IT team had to manage time and resources with care because the department was not initially expecting to make the switch this year. However, having some of their equipment IPv6-ready let them deploy a lab and production environment on the same servers. This helped the IT department reduce expenses and get the testing environment running more quickly than initially expected, Benoit told itWorld Canada.
Migrating to the IPv6 protocol will be different for every company. Recently, Network Computing published a report detailing its move to IPv6, and their problems were quite different from those dealt with at Georgian College. Network Computing had to first identify the best way to transition to the new protocol, which was a major challenge because their colocation provider was not equipped to support IPv6. Rather than switch providers, the company decided to set up a couple of on-premise servers equipped for IPv6. This lets them accept an IPv6 transmission and then send an IPv4 proxy to the colocation facility in its place.