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Technological trends fueling IPv6 adoption

By Donna Donnowitz
June 9, 2011
Growing trends in network infrastructure development are leading to IPv6 adoption.

Networking infrastructure is rapidly changing as cloud computing, the internet of things and other trends fuel network upgrades in many industries. Cloud computing has created demand for network upgrades, because companies are depending on internet connections to access IT services. The internet of things, on the other hand, is fueling infrastructure growth by connecting almost any device, including lighting and cooling systems, to the network.

According to a recent Neustar report, these trends are not only fueling networking changes, they are also encouraging IPv6 adoption. The primary reason companies are migrating to IPv6 is because they are running out of available IPv4 addresses, and the way cloud computing and the internet of things allow almost anything to use the internet is leading to a connected device boom.

As a result, the report said, more businesses are turning to IPv6, because they recognize the urgency of upgrading to the new protocol. However, companies should not see the urgency of IPv6 and move too rapidly to change their network infrastructure, said Tom McGarry, vice president of the advanced technology group at Neustar.

"A proper transition from IPv4 to IPv6 is integral to the future of conducting business via the Internet," said McGarry. "It is important to recognize the transition cannot be handled in a hasty and piecemeal fashion."

While overly-rapid IPv6 adoption is not advisable, Neustar has noticed a gradual increase in IPv6 migration. Analysis of the company's own user base found that just 745 million IPv6 queries were sent in May of 2010. However, the company saw 1.4 billion IPv6 queries during the same period in 2011.

IPv6 adoption is important, because it impacts every part of network infrastructure. It also impacts companies in every industry. A recent File Transfer Consulting report found many file transfer providers have begun moving toward IPv6, but still have areas in their networks that are not IPv6-compliant. Andy White, CTO for File Transfer Consulting, said many individuals look at IPv6 adoption and think it is all about updating routers and switches. But file transfer hardware and other related systems also have to be IPv6-ready for the network to work correctly.


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