[VoiceOps] IPV6

Jeff McAdams jeffm at iglou.com
Wed Oct 21 14:46:36 EDT 2009

Alex Balashov wrote:
> It's certainly shorter.  The issue is that it takes more effort and time 
> mentally to compute contiguity, subnet boundaries, etc. because the 
> numbers involved are not base 10.

I disagree completely.  After a short adjustment time, I find that its 
considerably *easier* to compute those things.  Since those computations 
are all, ultimately, based on base 2 which maps cleanly to hex, and 
considerably less cleanly to decimal, ultimately it ends up being easier 
to compute these things in hex.

Quick, is in the same network as  Ugh.  I'll 
take hex, where, it may not be easy, because, yeah, we're used to 
mentally dealing with decimal (because we have 10 fingers), but it does 
actually end up being easier in hex than decimal.

> As you suggest, it's something one can probably get used to.  But it 
> sure is ugly in the interim.

There is an adjustment period, but then we all had an adjustment period 
to get used to IPv4 network/netmask/broadcast/network computation rules, 
too.  Ultimately, once you make the adjustment, IPv6 ends up actually 
being easier.  Trust me, I was surprised by it as well, but it really does.

> I do think that's one of the major barriers to the adoption of IPv6 in a 
> commonsensical, pedestrian way.  Nobody is against bigger address space, 
> increased security, more interface autoconfiguration, etc.  I think they 
> just look at the addresses and go, "Uh, I don't want to read THAT..."

The problem is that its a myth.  People *think* its harder, but it ends 
up not actually being harder.

> Moving the transport core of a service provider to IPv6 is not so 
> difficult.  But taking advantage of all the benefits you cite requires 
> that users be on IPv6 too, which is far from always a viable state of 
> affairs at this point.  It's more likely if you're a CLEC or ISP and 
> control the network end-to-end to the customer edge, but nearly 
> impossible if you're an ITSP without facilities affinity.

Again (trying to retain some semblance of on-topic-ness here), native 
IPv6 isn't absolutely necessary.  There are other ways of getting IPv6 
to endpoints.  I have IPv6 on my home network, when my broadband 
provider probably hasn't even heard of the concept, yet.  Other 
techniques can get IPv6 addressing and transport on endpoints without 
upstream networks, or even the local network, supporting IPv6.  If those 
techniques were built into endpoints, all of the problems with NAT 
suddenly disappear, even without end-to-end control all the way out to 
the edge.

Jeff McAdams
jeffm at iglou.com

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