We knew this day will arrive back in the late 1980s. IPv4 armageddon is coming. And it will arrive in a matter of weeks (or even days). Only seven unallocated IPv4 blocks remain available, or less than 3% of the IPv4 address space.
An IP address is a unique code that every computer, website, and Web-enabled device has. The internet is currently using IPv4 protocols. IPv4 allows approximately 4.3 billion addresses (4,294,967,296 to be exact). When IPv4 protocols were created back in 1977, everyone thought that 4.3 billion addresses is more than enough for the “experiment”. Who would expect the widespread usage of Internet back in those days?
The solution for IPv4 address exhaustion is IPv6. IPv6 can allow up to 340 trillion trillion trillion addresses (340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456). But the switch to IPv6 has been slow. Luckily for us, IPv4 and IPv6 can coexist during the transition period.
Several large organisations are preparing to do a 24 hour IPv6 test run on 8 June 2011, World IPv6 Day. The goal of World IPv6 day is to motivate organizations across the industry to prepare their services for IPv6 to ensure a successful transition as IPv4 addresses run out.
We need to act fast. According to IPv4Countdown, the number of allocatable IPv4s has dropped below twenty-three million.
By the way, I’m not sure about you. But somethings tells me that many many years down the road, IPv6 will also be exhausted. I don’t know if we can live long enough to see that day. But I’m sure someone will write a blog article (if people still blog) saying that everybody thought that IPv6 is enough back in 2011. Oh well…..