[arin-ppml] IPv6 Heretic thoughts

Dan White dwhite at olp.net
Fri Sep 5 09:56:05 EDT 2008

Cliff Bedore wrote:
> I read it and am impressed that you have gone as far as you have. I
> think you will have to admit you are not a typical CEO in a typical 
> for-profit company and are probably in the very small minority of 
> entities who have gone gung ho for IPv6.  As you point out, lots of 
> people bought Beta video players, HD DVD.  Hell I was a big proponent of 
> CPM86/Concurrent CPM/86.  It was a much better system than MSDOS but 
> that didn't make it a success.  And don't get me wrong.  I'm not 
> particularly anti-IPv6 but it's just NOT happening in most of the 
> world.  It doesn't seem like we're going to get a disruptive application 
> for IPv6 so we need another hook to get people to buy in.  The only one 
> I see is to get IPv6 and IPv4 talking transparently so we don't need 
> dual stack and people can keep resources that use IPv4 and get to IPv6 
> as progress and funds allow.  No one wants to go to IPv6 by itself 
> because there is too much IPv4 they couldn't reach.  Dual stack is a 
> kludge(IMO).  We need transparent communication between them and without 
> that, I don't believe IPv6 will take off in my lifetime.
> Cliff

I think there's an implication in this line of reasoning that IPv6 is 
hard, and that dual stack is bad.

Dual-stack IPv4/IPv6 is easy. You just enable it in your OS, or perhaps 
it already is. IPv4 continues to work uninterrupted, dual stack servers 
are reachable and IPv6 only sites are reachable. I don't really see any 
downsides to this approach except for inevitable bugs and issues that 
are bound to pop up with new technology.

Of course, this is an overly simplistic scenario, but my point is that 
it's supposed to be easy for customers. It's not their job to worry 
about all the network engineering involved to make this happen. As a 
service provider, or network manager, it's your job, in my opinion, to 
engineer the network to support easy access to IPv6 and to figure out 
all the hard stuff for the benefit of your users. If engineered 
correctly, IPv6 deployment should be nearly unnoticeable to the majority 
of typical Web/Email users.

Networks are certainly different, and there are many barriers to entry 
(consumer routers being a big one) but making roll out as easy as 
possible for service providers, using translators and proxies and such, 
should not really be our primary goal.

Also, IPv6 was not designed as a product. It should not really depend on 
residential demand. It's a protocol designed to address the short 
comings of IP4 and should be used as a tool to provide better service, 
or service where it would not be feasible.

- Dan

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