Welcome IPv4 user

Latest adoption statistics

According to Google's latest IPv6 adoption statistics, global adoption of IPv6 amongst users of Google's services crossed the 3% level earlier this month. Similarly, Akamai's statistics paint a picture of healthy and consistent growth in IPv6 usage of their services.

While South Africa is leading the pack within Africa, our statistics still lag behind the rest of the world by a significant margin. This is largely due to the fact that all of the most widely used access networks are still controlled by a small number of operators - none of whom have rolled out IPv6 to their end users or have provided IPv6 capable platforms to their wholesale service providers.

Three percent adoption of IPv6 may sound extremely small and that is because it is. When Google first reported crossing the 1% level many people made the same comment. What is important to consider is the growth: roughly 150% year-on-year.

If this same growth level continues then we will see IPv6 cross the 50% level to become the most dominant protocol in 2017. This could also happen even sooner as the IPv4 address space depletion takes hold in Europe this year and spreads to the Americas.

Much of the fanfare and excitement of IPv6 adoption is already over but we have a few more years of hard work ahead before it becomes the norm.


One year to go

It passed by without any fanfare. I don't think anyone even noticed.

According to Geoff Huston's mathematical modeling we are now less than one year away from the final depletion of IANA's pool of free IPv4 netblocks.

The current estimate is that this will happen on 10th July 2011. What is going to happen you might ask...

An agreement was reached in the Internet community that as soon as the IANA has only 5 '/8' prefixes remaining in their pool they will all be handed out in one go. One prefix each to the 5 Regional Internet Registries (RIR). The registries are then responsible for distributing those addresses to users in their region.

Most RIRs have put in place policies that limit the maximum allocation size and rate of consumption of the final '/8'. This is intended to prevent a run-on-the-bank type situation and also try and ensure that small blocks of IPv4 addresses are available for critical systems such as DNS for a while.

The reality is that after July next year you are unlikely to be able to get an IPv4 allocation from your local RIR that will be big enough to build an ISP.

Are you ready for that?