The new standard protocol for the Internet, Internet Protocol version 6 (also known as IPv6), which is the next step beyond IPv4, the current standard protocol for the Internet. These protocols provide IP addresses, the “phone numbers” for the Internet that are responsible for identifying computers and devices so they can communicate.  It is designed to succeed the Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4). Each host or computer on the Internet requires an IP address in order to communicate. The growth of the Internet has created a need for more addresses than are possible with IPv4. IPv6 was developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to deal with this long-anticipated IPv4 address exhaustion While IPv4 allows 32 bits for an Internet Protocol address, and can therefore support 232 (4,294,967,296) addresses, IPv6 uses 128-bit addresses, so the new address space supports 2128 (approximately 340 undecillion or 3.4×1038) addresses. This enables essentially an unlimited number of IP addresses and subsequently, an unlimited number of devices that can be directly connected to the global Internet. IPv6 is also designed to solve many of the problems of IPv4, including mobility, autoconfiguration, and overall extensibility. It simplifies aspects of address assignment (stateless address autoconfiguration), network renumbering and router announcements when changing Internet connectivity providers.,  In IPv6, the packet header and the process of packet forwarding have been simplified. Although IPv6 packet headers are at least twice the size of IPv4 packet headers, packet processing by routers is generally more efficient.


IPv6 addresses have two logical parts: a 64-bit network prefix, and a 64-bit host address part. (The host address is often automatically generated from the interface MAC address.[34]) An IPv6 address is represented by 8 groups of 16-bit hexadecimal values separated by colons (:) shown as follows:

A typical example of an IPv6 address is


The hexadecimal digits are case-insensitive.

The 128-bit IPv6 address can be abbreviated with the following rules:

  • Rule one: Leading zeroes within a 16-bit value may be omitted. For example, the address fe80:0000:0000:0000:0202:b3ff:fe1e:8329 may be written asfe80:0:0:0:202:b3ff:fe1e:8329
  • Rule two: One group of consecutive zeroes within an address may be replaced by a double colon. For example, fe80:0:0:0:202:b3ff:fe1e:8329 becomes fe80::202:b3ff:fe1e:8329

A single IPv6 address can be represented in several different ways, such as 2001:db8::1:0:0:1 and 2001:0DB8:0:0:1::1. RFC 5952 recommends a canonical textual representation.



Major milestones


Major development and availability milestones

1996 Alpha quality IPv6 support in Linux kernel development version 2.1.8.[65]
6bone (an IPv6 virtual network for testing) is started.
1997 By the end of 1997 IBM‘s AIX 4.3 is the first commercial platform supporting IPv6.[66][67]
Also in 1997, Early Adopter Kits for DEC’s operating systems, Tru64 and OpenVMS, are made available.[68]
1998 Microsoft Research[69] releases its first experimental IPv6 stack. This support is not intended for use in a production environment.
2000 Production-quality BSD support for IPv6 becomes generally available in early to mid-2000 in FreeBSDOpenBSD, and NetBSD via the KAME project.[70]
Microsoft releases an IPv6 technology preview version for Windows 2000 in March 2000.[69]
Sun Solaris supports IPv6 in Solaris 8 in February.[71]
Compaq ships IPv6 with Tru64.[68]
2001 In January, Compaq ships IPv6 with OpenVMS.[68]
Cisco Systems introduces IPv6 support on Cisco IOS routers and L3 switches.[72]
HP introduces IPv6 with HP-UX 11i v1.[73]
On April 23, 2001, the European Commission launches the European IPv6 Task Force[74]
2002 Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000 SP1 have limited IPv6 support for research and testing since at least 2002.
Microsoft Windows XP (2001) supports IPv6 for developmental purposes. In Windows XP SP1 (2002) and Windows Server 2003, IPv6 is included as a core networking technology, suitable for commercial deployment.[75]
IBM z/OS supports IPv6 since version 1.4 (generally availability in September 2002).[76]
2003 Apple Mac OS X v10.3 “Panther” (2003) supports IPv6 which is enabled by default.[77]
2004 In July, ICANN announces that IPv6 address records for the Japan (jp) and Korea (kr) country code top-level domain name servers are visible in the DNS root server zone files with serial number 2004072000. The IPv6 records for France (fr) are added later. This makes IPv6 DNS publicly operational.
2005 Linux 2.6.12 removes experimental status from its IPv6 implementation.[78]
2007 Microsoft Windows Vista (2007) supports IPv6 which is enabled by default.[75]
Apple’s AirPort Extreme 802.11n base station includes an IPv6 gateway in its default configuration. It uses 6to4 tunneling and manually configured static tunnels.[79] (Note: 6to4 was disabled by default in later firmware revisions.)
2008 On February 4, 2008, IANA adds AAAA records for the IPv6 addresses of six root name servers.[80][81] With this transition, it is now possible to resolve domain names using only IPv6.
On March 12, 2008, Google launches a public IPv6 web interface to its popular search engine at the URL http://ipv6.google.com.[55]
On March 12, 2008, IETF does an hour long IPv4 blackout at its meeting as an opportunity to capture informal experience data to inform protocol design work going forward;[82] this led to many fixes in operating systems and applications.
On May 27, 2008, the European Commission publish their Action Plan for the deployment of Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) in Europe, with the aim of making IPv6 available to 25% of European users by 2010.[83]
2009 In January 2009, Google extends its IPv6 initiative with Google over IPv6, which offers IPv6 support for Google services to compatible networks.
2011 On June 8, 2011 the Internet Society together with several other big companies and organizations held World IPv6 Day, a global 24 hour test of IPv6.


About Sandeep Chaudhary

Engineering students having artistic approach and innovative ideas. Love to write about all latest gadgets and other awesome stuff that i Luv

Posted on October 18, 2011, in Technology and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 20 Comments.

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