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IPv6 challenges are surmountable

By Max Burkhalter
May 26, 2011
Overcoming the challenges of deploying IPv6 address protocol can seem daunting for service providers, businesses and others working to transition to the new standard. However, these difficulties can be addresses and IPv6 networking is an attainable goal.

In a recent interview with TechTarget, Glenn Evans, lead engineer for InteropNet, explained ways to overcome the challenges of deploying an IPv6 network. InteropNet is the company that develops network infrastructure for the highly-attended Interop conference every year. According to Evans, each year sees different goals for infrastructure that can support services from approximately 20 different telecom service providers and users running a diverse range of operating systems.

Because deploying the network infrastructure for Interop is such a challenge, the system quickly became part of the conference's identity. Therefore, the network is a part of the show. Evans said each year is marked by changes meant to reflect the overall messages and defining points of the conference. This year, he said the focus was deploying IPv6.

Evans told the news source every company needs to consider IPv6 migration, making the transition a key part of the event. To make the network IPv6 compatible, the organization had to overcome a number of challenges. Overall, Evans said the challenging nature of IPv6 adoption is such that businesses should treat the process with more urgency.

To deploy IPv6 at Interop Las Vegas 2011, Evans told TechTarget the company used three different systems. The first was dual-stack technology, which supports IPv4 and IPv6. InteropNet established dual-stack over the entire conference, allowing every visitor to use either IPv4 or IPv6. Secondary IPv6 channels included a wholly-IPv6 show area, where the Wi-Fi network was entirely IPv6-enabled. Evans said this was an important showpiece because it demonstrated that IPv6 is possible, while also presenting its challenges. The company also created a network address translation section that would translate IPv4 addresses to connect them to IPv6.

Evans told TechTarget creating a dual-stack configuration was the easiest and best scenario for InteropNet because it was working from scratch for its network deployment. However, the three different configurations clarified one of IPv6's greatest challenges - getting used to creating algorithms for the significantly larger address numbers.

While deploying IPv6 may not seem too urgent for some businesses, the telecom service provider industry is quickly recognizing the technology's importance. According to a recent survey from BT Diamond IP, service providers are moving quickly to deploy IPv6, as all respondents were at least planning their IPv6 migration.


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