A short while ago the world officially ran out of IP addresses, something you may have heard about on the news. Put simply, the internet is full up.
Well, not quite that bad. RIPE, from whom all IP address allocations in Europe originate, has recently been allocated the final few blocks of IPv4 space from IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority). This means the IANA free pool of IPv4 address space is now exhausted.
What should I do?
IPv4 is the addressing used on the Internet as most people know it today. IPv6 is the replacement for IPv4. The snag is that IPv6 is not just an upgrade for IPv4, it’s a replacement. That means for an interim period of the next few years, networks will need to support both and internet based services need to be accessible on both where possible.
The good news is that your computers are almost certainly IPv6 capable right now. Modern operating systems, whether Windows, Mac OS, or Linux, have already enabled IPv6 support. To allow your computers to make use of IPv6 you just need something on your network to tell them what to do. For most users this will usually just be a new router.
What are you doing?
Our core network has been dual stack, that is to say running both IPv4 and IPv6, for several years. All our broadband connections are IPv6 capable; you just need to make sure you have a router that knows how to handle IPv6 traffic when it sees it. Once you’re running an IPv6 capable router, just let us know you’d like IPv6 to be enabled on your connection and we’ll assign a /64 address range for your use. If you need a larger range – for example, if you want to run separate internal networks – we can assign all the way up to a /48 for your use. To give you an idea how much bigger IPv6 is, a /64 address range would allow you to have up to 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 individual addresses!