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Warning: Don´t touch anything on World IPv6 Day

By Donna Donowitz
February 23, 2011
While many websites and companies continue their preparation for the impending switch to the new generation of internet protocol, a Silicon Republic article has advice for those on World IPv6 Day - don’t touch anything.

Some website owners have actually been warened not to try switching to their IPv6-only site on World IPv6 Day, taking place on June 8, unless they know for sure their internet service or hosting provider has moved to the new domain name system. According to David Thompson, a product director at telecom equipment company ZyXEL, switching from IPv4 to IPv6 without certainty of readiness could “[open] a can of worms and things could go awry,” the article states.

ZyXEL actually built the first IPv6 asymmetric digital subscriber line gateway in 2005. Thompson relayed that large-scale adoption of IPv6 gateways by telecoms in North America is currently underway - a positive sign for internet users to hear.

According Vint Cerf, the proclaimed "father of the internet" recently stated only 0.02 percent of the world internet community is currently ready to switch to IPv6.

“Our current measurements suggest that the vast majority - 99.95 percent - of users will be unaffected [by the switch],” Cerf said. “However, in rare cases, users may experience connectivity problems, often due to misconfigured or misbehaving home network devices.”

Thompson agrees with Cerf’s opinion and strongly urges website owners not to make the switch unless certain the correct tunneling is in place.

“On June 8, a lot of people fear they will be caught unawares and someone will no doubt tell them to how to do it on a Mac or PC. Don’t do it. It won’t work,” said Thompson. “End-users who get caught up in IPv6 will find that not much will work.”

For those end users unfamiliar with the switch and the technology required to make it effectively, Thompson advises them to sit back and stay the course throughout World IPv6 Day.

“There will not be a situation on June 8 that people won’t be able to access their favorite websites, the only sites they won’t be able to access are the ones that tried to move too soon,” said Thompson. “Don’t touch anything. If you know what you’re doing then definitely play with it but people who don’t, just sit back.”

Currently, Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Bing, Comcast and Time Warner are among the major companies taking part in World IPv6 Day.


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