IPv6 guide part 4: IPv6 products lack features

In part four of our IPv6 guide we look at the IPv6 capability of networking products

Hill agrees IPv6 isn’t getting the level of attention it deserves because it is seen as an investment that delivers few benefits.

However, it does promise lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and should be recognised as a technology enabler that promotes innovation.

To promote the benefits of IPv6, Mr Hill's consultancy IPv6Now has been working with the Australian Industry Group and the Victorian government in the development of a virtual testbed known as Vic6.

It is a fully functioning IPv6 network for testing the compatibility of hardware and software.

While some organisations may struggle to build a business case for IPv6, for others it is a no brainer.

One such organisation is the Australian Department of Defence (DOD). Another drive for DOD to move away from IPv4 is the IPv6 mandate introduced by the United States government.

The benefits of migrating for DOD include uninterrupted interoperability and real time information sharing.

According to a Defence spokesperson IPv6 provides information sharing capabilities not possible on IPv4.

DOD began planning its migration as early as 2005 and will complete the transition by 2013.

A IPv6 Migration Checklist: Keeping it Simple
  • Pre-migration checklist
  • A stock take is required for equipment and applications
  • IPv6 capability should be included in all procurement
  • Training
  • Threat and risk assessment
  • Transition checklist
  • Upgrade hardware, operating systems, applications and ICT gateways so they are IPv6 ready
  • Ensure IPv6 capability has been certified to appropriate level of security
  • Ensure strategy is seamless
  • Undertake testing of hardware and software in ICT environment
  • Implementation Checklist
  • Once the organisation is IPv6 ready and meets certification, threat and risk assessments, it is time to coordinate and enable IPv6. Organisation should also be working with suppliers, customers and the market.
  • Finally, over time the replacement of anything that isn’t IPv6 capable will just be part of the refresh cycle.

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