At this point, the technical community should already understand that IPv4 addresses are gone and that IPv6 is the best way to keep the Internet growing. Although we have known for years that this day would arrive, the community doesn’t always see the need to act. The common refrain is that there’s no killer app and no return on investment. Well, the Internet itself is the killer app -- if a business uses the Internet for any reason at all today then that business needs deal with the fact that the public Internet will deploy IPv6 and react accordingly. That encompasses a pretty broad set of scenarios -- hosted services, online banking, student registration, government services, telecommuter access, remote site connections, backup network connections, partner sites, on-line advertising, retail, social media … the list goes on.
Clients have started to demand IPv6 accessible services. The U.S. Government is demanding IPv6 compliance as a condition in its procurements and organizations like ARIN will require IPv6 accessibility of vendor as a condition on their external contractors. In the rapidly growing mobile telephony space, providers are looking to roll out native IPv6 service in order to reduce the network complexity and the reliance on Network Address Translation services. Enterprises that provide native IPv6 connectivity will have an advantage in this space.
You may already have some ideas or plans to roll out or test IPv6, or may have spent some time testing in the lab. But how can you really see if your enterprise is ready to provide IPv6 services?
World IPv6 Day is a large scale, public test to see how well the IPv6 Internet runs without a set of training wheels. A large number of public web sites will make their services available via IPv6. This 24 hour worldwide test provides a great, low risk opportunity to try out how well your own IPv6 plan works in a live environment.
If you want to participate in World IPv6 Day, how can you convince your boss?
There are basic reasons, all derived from the premise that everyone is going to have to deal with IPv6 sooner or later, so by being part of this event you can check your capabilities “live” at the same time as everyone else.
- It provides a way to demonstrate commitment to your customers that you will be part of the ‘new’ version of the Internet, especially to those who will have IPv6 only access.
- It provides a way to collect live data about how many people have IPv6 capability that are trying to reach your site, and you can also get a sense of what problems that they might be experiencing.
- It provides a way to demonstrate to your technical staff that your organization is forward thinking. Some organizations use the fact that they are technical leaders as a means to attract talent.
- It provides a way to show your CEO what you are doing about the crisis that she is reading about in The Economist, The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times. The CIO better have a workable plan. This is a good way to try that plan out.
- It provides a professional growth opportunity for your engineers to cooperate and collaborate with peers inside and outside the company, so it’s a great way to foster teamwork.
- It is a one time learning opportunity and a well publicized experiment, so it’s ok for things to be bumpy – but only on June 8th!
- A relatively low traffic is expected, so there should not be any specific additional hardware expenditures required, just some time.
There are two ways to participate. The one most people talk about is publishing your web content on the IPv6 internet. The second is to let your client devices -- which are probably already IPv6 capable -- connect to the IPv6 internet and see the content for themselves. Watch for future blogs on tips to activate IPv6 on your network and with your content distribution networks.