Todd Cochrane spoke to Richard of the American Registry of Internet Numbers or ARIN. ARIN provides service related to the management of Internet number resources in its specific region. There are five RIR in the world, the American registry serves the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean. One of their main purposes today is to get out the word that IPv4 numbers are running out. IPv4 is based on 32 bits with 4 billion addresses.
According to Richard, even if we got back all the legacy IPv4 addresses that are no longer in use we would only have enough addresses for another 10 years. Right now most regions will run out of their allocation of IPv4 addresses sometime this year. ARIN will have no more to give them. When this happens if the regional ISP provider hasn’t switched over to IPv6, they will be forced to do things like have multiple consumers use the same IPv4 address. This will increase latency for the consumer and could break some equipment.
IPV6 has been around since 1998, however it has taken sometime for manufacture to make their equipment IPv6 capable, Today all Windows, Mac and most Linux distributions are IPv6 capable, however there is a lot of electronic equipment that is not. If you are buying a new piece of hardware, make sure it is IPv6 capable. IPv6 is based on 128 bits with support for 2 to the 128th power addresses. Once everything moves over to IPv6 we should have enough addresses to last for centuries. For now we will have the mixture of IPv4 and IPv6 addresses.
Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.
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