[clug] IPv6

Paul Wayper paulway at mabula.net
Wed Jan 12 02:00:34 MST 2011

Hash: SHA1

On 01/07/2011 03:17 PM, Robert Edwards wrote:
> According to a report in 2004, the Australian DoD will have completely
> cut-over by the end of 2007, so we don't need to worry about our Defence
> capabilities - phew!

Yes, this is the thing that s**ts me about the whole thing.

Yes, of course most large existing organisations have their own allocations of
IPv4 addresses, and have them deployed, and probably have a whole /16 to
themselves so they never need worry about getting an address when deploying
another machine, and they use NATting to provide internal addresses that don't
need to relate to how many actual addresses in that /16 they're already using.
 IBM, for example, has a /8 to itself for the entire world - even if they were
to never use NATting they'd never realistically need to use IPv6.

A quick survey of about three dozen major web sites in Australia showed only
one that returned an IPv6 address as part of the result of a 'host' command:
Internode.  None of the other major ISPs, none of the major banks, none of the
major government departments, none of the major news services, none of the
major commercial sites.  Why not?  Because they already have their IPv4
address and they're waiting until someone actually starts demanding IPv6
before they do it.

So who loses out because of this?  Well, no-one here, yet.  Most people using
the internet at home get an IPv4 address of some kind and that isn't going to
change even when APNIC hands out its last /22.  And yet we can already see
that that won't last - sooner or later some ISP's customer is simply not going
to be able to be given an IPv4 address.  And the people who _are_ going to
lose out - who are already losing out - are people in China, Japan and parts
of Europe, where IPv4 addresses are not issued and you only get an IPv6 address.

That's not a problem for Australian businesses, but it is a problem for
government departments.  You'd think they'd be doing something about it.  But
they're holding off, ostensibly because of 'budget cuts' but in reality
because no-one's pushed it high up enough on the list of priorities.  They're
happily spending money on moving data centres and rolling out new initiatives.

NATting is not the answer.  ISPs in Europe, Middle East, Japan and China are
already NATting - badly.  I talked to a guy from Lebanon on IRC who's internal
network address was actually in the wanadoo.fr range - his ISP had simply
grabbed a random bit of IPv4 space and used it for their NATting.  He was
wondering why he couldn't get to certain websites.  I've heard stories of
two-level NATting in Asian ISPs.  These people are going to increasingly find
themselves made second-class citizens as their ISP's routers become the
bottlenecks and as new peer-to-peer apps come out which require real
addresses.  NATting is like thinking you can get twenty people in a mini by
winding the windows up and pushing harder.

After the 1974 floods in Brisbane, caused by the Somerset Dam having to
release water in an already full catchment as the torrential rains hit, when
did the Queensland government move to build the Wivenhoe dam?  Not in 2010; in
1974 - in fact they were already planning and buying land in 1973.  The time
to start planning for the flood of people who only have IPv6 addresses is now,
not when they start breaking down my analogy.

Probably a better analogy is climate change.  The signs have been there for
the last 20 years or more that we're causing major shifts in the earth's
climate; that we're starting to rely on resources that have finite limits.
Governments and corporations are doing little about this because we haven't
suddenly stopped getting any oil at all or whatever.  Yet only when the price
of petrol goes suddenly up to $1.50 per litre do we hear any plans by those
organisations to reduce our use of petrol.  As soon as the scare goes away
they're off on other tangents.  They're only going to actually change their
behaviour when a competitor comes in and does better than them by using less
fuel.  What really changes things is when the consumers themselves say "No,
I'm not going to use precious resources, I'm going to get something whose
power source is expanding, not contracting."

Yes, this is all a bit ranty.  Sorry.

Have fun,

Version: GnuPG v1.4.11 (GNU/Linux)
Comment: Using GnuPG with Fedora - http://enigmail.mozdev.org/


More information about the linux mailing list