Enterprise Networks and the Drive for IPv6
It was not that long ago that whenever I read an article about IPv6, it usually discussed how the IPv4 Address depletion in other countries. At that time, the adoption of IPv6 was coming from other countries that where the v4 address space was depleted, the US Government, or Service Provider. Well fast forward only a few years and you can include Enterprise Networks in that mix.
Driving this IPv6 train for enterprise networks is wireless technology and the enabling by-product, BYOD. Wireless technology, in particular, Wi-Fi has grown from a toy to a requirement in most businesses today. We have moved from 802.11b which gave you a max datarate of a paltry 11Mbps to 802.11n to a max datarate of 450Mbps if you currently deploy the Aironet 3600 Access Point that supports 4×4 MIMO; if not, it’s a max datarate of 300Mbps. Never mind the fact that we will soon see the Wave 1 version of 802.11ac will have a datarate of 1.3Gbps and Oh BTW, Wave 2 promises a scorching datarate of 6.9Gbps!
With the improvements in wireless technology, it is no wonder that the number of tablets, smartphones, and laptops has increased. Having these devices come in and out of in a network is driving some enterprises towards IPv6. One of the main reasons is because of the amount of address space needed to satisfy these new devices. This is especially prevalent in large enterprise networks that hand out thousands of addresses an hour and changing over to IPv6 alleviates this issue. However, it is not only address depletion that is an issue. Enterprise networks that have a global presence are also deploying IPv6 across their network. This is due to the fact that they may have network location in countries that no longer have IPv4 addresses and are forced to run IPv6.
If you want to hear more and you happen to be in Paris this week, I will be speaking on this very subject at the v6 World Congress. If you are planning on coming to the show, Please stop by and say hello. My session is at 9:30AM this Thursday, March 21st, 2013.