World IPv6 Launch – Theme Day, 6 June 2012
Transition to IPv6, the next-generation Internet protocol, will be promoted on the World IPv6 Launch theme day, which is being held by the Internet Society on 6 June 2012. During the World IPv6 Launch theme day, IPv6 will be permanently deployed in numerous services, networks and hardware. Some of the service providers participating in the event are Google, YouTube, Facebook and Yahoo. CSC and Funet will also be involved. Compared to its predecessor, IPv4, the IPv6 protocol offers considerably more address space, thus allowing for Internet growth in the future.
Funet (Finnish University and Research Network) piloted the IPv6 protocol at the turn of the millennium, soon after which production services were started. Funet also participated in standardization of the protocol. "The Funet backbone has offered production-level IPv6 service for nearly 10 years. The final IPv4 address blocks were allocated last year, and now the remaining operators are beginning to catch on," says Mr. Juha Oinonen, Development Manager with Funet. "An increasing percentage of the Internet and its content will be blocked from anyone remaining outside of IPv6," adds Oinonen. Standardization and product development are also being increasingly aimed at IPv6.
"The proportion of IPv6 traffic is still fairly low, and capabilities differ significantly between organizationst." Various indicators, however, point toward rapid growth. "In two-three years, IPv4 and IPv6 traffic volumes are likely to be neck and neck," predicts Oinonen.
IPv6 is available throughout Funet. All Funet basic services are compatible with both the IPv4 and IPv6 protocol. CSC offers Funet member organizations training and advisory services to facilitate deployment of the IPv6 protocol.
"The transition to IPv6 should be taken into consideration in the hardware lifecycle design, to minimize any additional hardware costs. Now is a good time to act and start taking steps towards full deployment of IPv6," says Oinonen.
A majority of Funet Internet services can already be used without the IPv4 protocol. This is made possible by Funet IPv6 transition services, which automatically make the necessary conversions between IPv4 and IPv6 networks. This allows Funet to pave the way for the final phase-out of IPv4.
The CSC – IT Center for Science is administered by the Ministry of Education and Culture. CSC is a non-profit company that provides IT support and resources for academia, research institutes and companies: modeling, computing and information services. CSC provides Finland's widest selection of scientific software and databases and Finland's most powerful supercomputing environment that researchers can use via the Funet network.