By Max Clarke

Google, Bing, Facebook and Yahoo are among the big names of the Internet world pioneering the new Internet Protocol system of addressing.

For the past 30 years the world’s internet ready devices have been identified using the IPv4 system, though as numbers of online gadgets have seen an exponential rise, available addresses are running out.

“By moving to IPv6, the number of IP addresses is expanded to an unimaginably large scale. This relieves the pressing shortage of IP addresses being faced today in IPv4, so that there will be addresses available for all the new web sites, printers, cars and light bulbs that will need them,” explains Cisco’s Chief Technical officer, Ian Foddering.

For 24 hours, the new IPv6 system is being tested as part of a the Internet Society’s World IPv6 Day.

“At Cisco, we recently announced figures from our VNI (Visual Networking Index) report,” continued Foddering, “which predicts billions of new devices will be connected to the Internet by 2015. Just to put that into perspective, that is an average of over two devices for every person on the planet. In the developed world, this is even higher, where it will be up to seven network connected devices.”

The need for the move is apparent, though numerous issues with hardware and software compatability will ensue for unprepared companies. Certain websites, notably heise.de ran their own IPv6 test at the end of 2010 and the site runs on both IP systems.


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