I’m a big IPV6 fan. I’ve been using it as a user (vs developer) since before they invented NAT to fend off the inevitable shortage of IPV4 addresses.

What’s so cool about IPV6? I like Alex Lightman‘s hypothetical version the best:

  1. Great return on investment: “At Oracle we invested $50,000 to IPv6 enable our database software, and were able to sell millions more to the Dept. of Defense instead of repeatedly asking for waivers.”
  2. Lives saved: “After Major Ros Dixon’s company started using IPv6 on all equipment and warfighters, as well as sensornets that enabled Marines to better recognize friend or foe, friendly fire accidents dropped to zero, and the ratio of enemy casualties to coalition casualties has soared in America’s favor.”
  3. Sales growth: “Hexago’s revenue from sales of its $35,000 IPv6 tunnel broker doubled from Q1 to Q2 as ISPs all rushed to add IPv6 offerings.”
  4. Credibility increase: “When the Dept. of Defense completed its transition to IPv6 in late 2007, a year ahead of its own target date, it gained the admiration of the US Congress, and received funds allocated by Congress beyond the DoD’s own requests, to build on the new potential for Network-Centric Warfighting.”
  5. Lives saved: “By IPv6 enabling ambulances and mobile medical equipment, European Union nations were able to triple the number of people treated before getting to hospitals, and double the lives saved in Golden Hour interventions.”
  6. Sales growth: “The Consumer Electronics Association reported that IPv6-enabled products returned because purchasers could not figure out how to configure and begin using them was only 10% of purchases vs. the industry standard 32% return rate.”
  7. Reduced crime: “Electronic fraud complaints have been cut by over 80% per capita for mobile commerce users using phones with IPv6 and mandatory IPSec compared with mobile commerce users using (private) Network Address Translation.”
  8. Better performance: “New customer satisfaction at T-Mobile in Germany has increased from 70% to 85% after IPv6 stacks were added to new phones, doubling their battery life while doubling the average talk minutes as well.”
  9. Government Respect: “Japan’s government has impressed the world by successfully transitioning its entire society to IPv6 years ahead of any other country, and is starting to build on new capabilities in hundreds of industries.”
  10. Public excitement: “Hundreds of new products and public companies that didn’t exist in 2004 are being unleashed to the two billion Internet users, creating energy, publicity, and enthusiasm for the Internet industry that hasn’t been seen since the mid-nineties, when the Internet accounted for 1/3rd to 1/2 of GDP growth.”

Ok, so we know these are hypothetical examples but they are achievable with IPV6. What are some of the practical things you can use IPV6 for now?

1) IRC6 – connect to IRC via IPV6 and get a wicked cool mask:

* [Rinchen] (~Rinchen@2001:4830:152d:0:20e:cff:fe74:b250): Rinchen
* [Rinchen] #ubuntu @#ubuntu-colorado
* [Rinchen] plasma.oftc.net :The Netherlands
* [Rinchen] 2001:4830:152d:0:20e:cff:fe74:b250 :actually using host
* [Rinchen] idle 00:28:10, signon: Mon Jan 22 23:39:15
* [Rinchen] End of WHOIS list.

2) USENET – connect to news://newszilla6.xs4all.nl and read your news via IPV6

3) Play Quake

4) Go MUDing at Fatal Dimensions. To connect, just telnet to port 4000 on mud.fataldimensions.org.

5) Media – e.g. ICECAST2 and Netherlands TV and Radio

6) Surf IPV6 sites or perhaps abstract your surfing via a Gateway

7) Sync your time via NTP

8) IM over IPV6 with Jabber – e.g. use amessage

9) VOIP and IPTV – watch this space for announcements in 2007

10) Setup an IPV6 website. One of the easier ways is to be afraid.
…and more

My local ISP doesn’t provide native IPV6 although there are several out there that do. I’ve tried just about every tunnel broker and have found SixXS to be the best. Did you know that the SixXS IPV6 infrastructure currently in place has lots of available bandwidth? Translation = speedy!

I am very happy with my own personal setup. I have one my servers in the basement setup as the IPV6 tunnel and router. I use it to vend out my IPV6 subnet addresses to my IPV6 ready devices. One day I hope I can get native IPV6 service. I’ve considered forcing all of my traffic over IPV6 but some of my apps that I use for work haven’t got their head out of the IPV4 world.

If you’re interesting in giving IPV6 a whirl, head over to SixXS and follow the 10 easy steps to IPV6.