[clug] IPv6 Australia?

Michael Cohen scudette at gmail.com
Wed Jul 23 13:30:37 GMT 2008

IPv6 sounds to me like a solution looking for a problem - there are
lots of features that sound cool in some sitations. Like seamless
roaming handover - multicasting which actually works etc. But none of
the them are "killer" apps. These can all be done easily enough in

I recently had a brush with IPSEC and i have never seen anything so
over engineered and a real pain to get working. In contrast setting up
openvpn is a breeze in comparison, and its way more reliable and far
more flexible in getting through firewalls and networks (since its
just udp, works great with NAT - no need to invent a whole new
protocol just for vpns). The project I was involved with moved from an
ipsec solution to openvpn and we never looked back.

Yes NAT is a hack - but most people use nat these days not because
they dont have enough ip addresses, but because they want security -
its convenient to use nat to block access to all but the machines
which need it. Its conceptually easy to think about an inside and an
outside for your network. NAT is broken with some protocols like ftp,
but most people only care about HTTP these days.

Modern protocols have NAT awareness build in (SIP/RTSP being a notable
exception - thats another protocol which was broken the day it was
published due to poor NAT support)  - for example HTTP can use the
Host: header to conglomerate any number of private ip addresses behind
the same public IP address. Since HTTP is probably the most prolific
protocol, and IP addresses limitation is simply not an issue for it -
most protocols seemed to converge on HTTP too now, for example rpc
protocols moved to soap or xmlrpc - even smtp and pop are less
popular, in favour of web based services like gmail.

So I see the need for ipv6 address space reducing in the long term,
not increasing. Thats why i dont believe IPv6 will be deployed widely
in too much of a hurry - there is no killer app and it offers no
advantage for todays internet. Maybe it will creep in silently and
somehow will reach critical mass, to make it that killer app that it
needs to be.

I heard its much more widely deployed in europe than here. There the
push is lead by the carriers who are building really advanced networks
which integrate IP and voice (I heard that in europe many mobile
networks are going to full IP telephony for each mobile handset) -
This will really apply pressure on ipv4's address space since there
are millions of handsets in use.

Australia is still behind the 8 ball in this field, certainly i heard
that telstra has no plans to go to ipv6.


2008/7/23 Sam Couter <sam at couter.id.au>:
> Michael Still <mikal at stillhq.com> wrote:
>> I guess the thing is that IPv6 connectivity isn't very useful until
>> there is IPv6 accessible content. My experience indicates that there is
>> very little of that at the moment.
> There's no content because there are no viewers and it costs extra for
> content hosts to maintain the IPv6 infrastructure. Extra cost, no
> benefit => no action.
> There are no viewers because there's very little content and no IPv6
> enabled home routers and it costs extra for ISPs to maintain the IPv6
> infrastructure. Extra cost, no benefit => no action.
> There are no IPv6 enabled home routers because there are no consumers
> willing to pay for them and it costs extra for device manufacturers to
> include IPv6 support. Extra cost, no benefit => no action.
> I really want to see IPv6 succeed because I hate NAT, and it comes with
> IPSEC features for free. It has cool factor and useful features for
> nerds but very little commercial benefit. I think it'll take the
> inevitable IPv4 address crunch to motivate anyone, and even then it may
> not happen. If the Internet becomes a predominantly broadcast medium like
> TV, only broadcasters will need real addresses and the rest of us plebs
> can live behind NAT and keep viewing like good little consumers.
> --
> Sam Couter         |  mailto:sam at couter.id.au
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