IPv6 – The Next Generation Protocol
You’ve probably heard about the newest version of Internet Protocol. That’s the Internet Protocol version 6, commonly referred as “IPv6”. It’s become a standard in 2017, so everyone considers it the next generation’s protocol. This was a much-needed change because the number of people using the Internet was rising rapidly since the 90’s. Engineers faced a problem of not having enough IP addresses for everybody, so they needed to expand the number digits in each of the IP address.
Expanding the number of digits allowed the number of possible IP addresses to the staggering 340 trillion, trillion, trillion. And yes, you’ve read that number right. This pretty much means that reaching that exact number of IP addresses is practically impossible. Apart from that, engineers developed this generation protocol so that it’s can provide the end-to-end datagram transmission across many IP networks.
You might be asking why should you care about the fact that these changes are happening. It’s because this change affects us all in a great deal. Using various Internet programs and applications, as well as playing online games would’ve quickly become impossible if we continued to use old protocols. Let’s actually imagine that we continued to use IPv4 addresses. At one point in time, we would have to share our IP address with someone else. Who would want to do that? You would lose your privacy as well as Internet reliability. And, maybe the most essential difficulty we would face if engineers hadn’t introduced IPv6 would be an inability to connect various devices.
There are differences between IPv4 and IPv6. These differences are very significant. The first and the most apparent one is the number of possible IP addresses. Version 4 of Internet Protocol provided only 4 billion addresses. Keep in mind that current world population is 7.6 Billion. And this is just the main issue with IPv4. We will need many more IP addresses than 7.6 Billion because every device, be it a computer, a smartphone or any game console needs its own IP address. IPv6 provides enough of those IP addresses. Also, one major difference and advantage of IPv6 is that it utilizes 128-bit addresses, which IPv4 doesn’t. Lastly, with IPv6, you won’t have to configure your IP address manually; that’s now done automatically.
You might be wondering how can you make sure that you’re prepared for this next generation technology developments. It all starts with simple checking if all of your networking equipment is capable of supporting IPv6. Next thing you should do is to check if your Internet service provider has the same new equipment. If they don’t have it, make sure you find an Internet service provider that’s more in line with world trends. Lastly, if you’re a hosting provider and you want to support this innovation, then you can join the number of other hosting providers who offer reduced rates for IPv6.
After reading these pieces of IPv6 information, you’re probably amazed at the rapid growth and innovation of Internet technologies. This amazing next generation protocol will make sure that we never face the problems that we encountered with previous protocols, which is an important step forward.
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