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US Federal Government Makes Huge Strides in IPv6 Deployment

October 3, 2012 - 3 Comments

The US Federal Government, like many large IT organizations  and other national governments recognizes the important of transition their networks to support IPv6. On Sept 2010 a memo on the transition to IPv6, was issued by then Federal CIO; Vivek Kundra, outlining the government’s commitment and rational behind expediting the operational deployment and use of IPv6.

The memo set two goals, the first being for all Federal agencies to try and upgrade public facing servers and services (e.g. web, email, DNS, ISP services) to use native IPv6 by September 30, 2012.  The second objective calls for agencies to upgrade internal client applications that communicate with public Internet servers and supporting enterprise networks to use native IPv6 by September 30, 2014.  To help agencies meet these timelines the CIO Council released an updated version of the “Planning Guide/Roadmap Toward IPv6 Adoption within the U.S. Government.”

With the first date behind us let’s take a look and see how much they were able to accomplish towards the transition to IPv6 for public sites.

As of today, 20% of US Federal Agencies WEB sites are fully IPv6 reachable (304 over 1493). While 20% may look a small percentage, the 304 IPv6 enabled websites are among the most visited federal agencies in the United States. Most of the US Federal Departments have at least one flagship site and the overall trend and momentum is very encouraging.  The complete results are on the National Institute of Standards and Technology website.

USG Deployment Details for IPv4 and IPv6


Although the US federal agencies haven’t been able to hit 100%, they’ve made huge strides and are much better off than the rest of the industry, and even ahead of most countries public sector in terms of IPv6 reachability, and overall readiness. We can expect more sites to come online over the course of the next few months.

If nothing else, this deadline has raised awareness of the IPv6 transition necessity, have challenged the industry and spurred vendors and providers of IT services to accelerate IPv6 products and service availability. Theses goals have clearly been met !

With these web sites coming on top of the Web Content that was enabled for World IPv6 Launch, we have now reached critical mass of IPv6 content. Statistics at show that an estimated 44% of overall WEB content viewed in the US can be consumed TODAY over IPv6. Quite an achievement indeed !

After the success of World IPv6 Launch, US federal Agencies are showing the way to go to public sectors and enterprises alike in US, and globally !

So great job to the U.S. Federal Government IT teams. Bravo on the progress you have made to this point and good luck with the IPv6 transition work yet to come. The next deadline is for US Government internal network and services to be IPv6 ready by end September 2014.

We’ll keep you updated on the progress, and as always the question I’ll keep asking from now on is: What have you enabled IPv6 on today?

Let us know how we can help (please comment below).

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  1. Mr Alain, I agree with you, “anyone” who go through the Internet, needs to deploy IPv6, and use his full potential…thanks for sharing all the information that reach our class discussions as well…my respects from PR…

  2. IPv6 still seen as an “exotic” project for many mid-size and small organizations. The fact is that if you don’t have today at least a dual stack IPv4 / IPv6, in couple of years you’ll be running out of time to implement it.

    • Indeed. what people have to get in their mind is that the Internet is a NETWORK (sound obvious does it ?) .
      But what that means in this context, is that as users somewhere get IPv6 service, and more and more do (about 1% globally): see, or the information/application/content that a mid-size or a large enterprise expose on the Internet has to be available on IPv6. OR this business takes the risk of someone/somewhere (likely an ISP they have no SLA with and no control over) will translate the session, and will potentially impact the end-user experience (performance, security). If you do business on the internet, you don’t want that !
      For business continuity sake, if you do business on the internet, deploy IPv6 sooner rather than later.
      If you wait too long, the number of users on IPv6 will make it MUCH more challenging.
      So doing it now is a sound decision both fromm a business AND technical perspective.