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Summer may mark the end of the IPv4 era

By Max Burkhalter
May 27, 2015

While the rise of IPv6 and the official end of IPv4 have been long discussed, it seems that the window for making the transition is finally coming to a close. That means organizations operating data centers will no longer be able to put off how they deal with the dwindling availability of the familiar protocol and must finally plan their move to IPv6. According to IT Business Edge, the final exhaustion of available IPv4 addresses will take place by the end of this summer.

"The American Registry for Internet Numbers will no longer be taking applications."

As a result, the American Registry for Internet Numbers will no longer be taking applications for IPv4. Learn more about the upcoming transition to make sure your company understands the risks associated with falling behind the curve.

Several major players are leading the way
Some of the biggest names in the tech industry long ago began to prepare for the upcoming transition to IPv6, according to NewsFactor, including Facebook and Google. This trend serves to squash any doubt that such an upgrade is necessary and prudent for companies managing data centers. Facebook is so far ahead of the IPv6 curve that it plans to have the entirety of its internal networks ready for the new protocol by the end of the current quarter. You and your staff may want to begin work on an Internet Protocol strategy as soon as possible given that the industry's giants started implementing their own transition plans years ago.

A half-hearted shift may create new vulnerabilities
Another reason that you and your IT are better off getting ahead of the IPv6 transition is because the alternative is doing so in a rush. A haphazard installation will leave your department more vulnerable to security problems. The First Post noted that hackers have already been successful in replicating IPv4 attacks over the new protocols. IT professionals will have their hands full dealing with these new security risks if they choose to make the transition to IPv6 in a haphazard, disorganized fashion.

The resource also noted that there are several methods that hackers can use to circumvent IPv4 defenses via IPv6. The best way to create a comprehensive security plan is to get your entire infrastructure on the same page. That way any solutions you and your staff devise will be relevant for the entire data center.

Prepare for IPv6 by taking a hard look at your entire infrastructure
Not sure where to start with your company's shift to IPv6? It may be beneficial to begin with reassessing the efficiency of your current architecture and looking for room for improvement. You may find that that many hardware upgrades, such as the use of new serial to Ethernet gear to integrate new pieces of technology, can overlap with your company's IPv6 upgrade goals.

The era of IPv6 will arrive sooner than you might expect.The era of IPv6 will arrive sooner than you might expect.

Network World also recommends that IT teams start by testing tools like service load balancers, firewalls and email filters. Many of these applications may already be IPv6 ready and won't require an upgrade when you prepare your data center for the protocol of the future.

Perle's serial to Ethernet converters connect serial based equipment across an Ethernet network. The Perle IOLAN range of Console Servers, Device Servers and Terminal Servers feature built-in support for IPv6 along with a broad range of authentication methods and encryption technologies.


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