Thursday, February 3, 2011

Ben Parr explains IPV4/IPV6

IPv4 & IPv6: A Short Guide

Ben Parr Feb 3, 2011 6:23 PM - Show original item

The Internet has run out of Internet addresses… sort of. Perhaps you’ve heard the news: the last blocks of IPv4 Internet addresses have been allocated. The fundamental underlying technology that has powered Internet Protocol addresses (ever seen a number like on the web? That’s an IP address) since the Internet’s inceptionwill soon be exhausted.
A new technology will take its place, though. IPv4′s successor is IPv6, a system that will not only offer far more numerical addresses, but will simplify address assignments and additional network security features.
The transition from IPv4 to IPv6 is likely to be rough, though. Most people are unfamiliar with IPv4 and IPv6, much less the potential impact the switch to IPv6 may have on their lives.
That’s why we’ve compiled this short guide to IPv4 and the eventual transition to IPv6. We explain the two versions of IP and why they matter. We also go into detail on what you can expect in the next few years as billions of websites, businesses and individuals make the switch to the new era of the Internet.

IPv4 & IPv6 Q&A

Q: What is IPv4?
A: IPv4 stands for Internet Protocol version 4. It is the underlying technology that makes it possible for us to connect our devices to the web. Whenever a device access the Internet (whether it’s a PC, Mac, smartphone or other device), it is assigned a unique, numerical IP address such as To send data from one computer to another through the web, a data packet must be transferred across the network containing the IP addresses of both devices.
Without IP addresses, computers would not be able to communicate and send data to each other. It’s essential to the infrastructure of the web.
Q: What is IPv6?
A: IPv6 is the sixth revision to the Internet Protocol and the successor to IPv4. It functions similarly to IPv4 in that it provides the unique, numerical IP addresses necessary for Internet-enabled devices to communicate. However, it does sport one major difference: it utilizes 128-bit addresses. I’ll explain why this is important in a moment.
Q: Why are we running out of IPv4 addresses?
A: IPv4 uses 32 bits for its Internet addresses. That means it can support 2^32 IP addresses in total — around 4.29 billion. That may seem like a lot, but all 4.29 billion IP addresses have now been assigned to various institutions, leading to the crisis we face today.
Let’s be clear, though: we haven’t run out of addresses quite yet. Many of them are unused and in the hands of institutions like MIT and companies like Ford and IBM. More IPv4 addresses are available to be assigned and more will be traded or sold (since IPv4 addresses are now a scarce resource), but they will become a scarcer commodity over the next two years until it creates problem for the web.
Q: How does IPv6 solve this problem?
A: As previously stated, IPv6 utilizes 128-bit Internet addresses. Therefore, it can support 2^128 Internet addresses — 340,282,366,920,938,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 of them to be exact. That’s a lot of addresses, so many that it requires a hexadecimal system to display the addresses. In other words, there are more than enough IPv6 addresses to keep the Internet operational for a very, very long time.
Q: So why don’t we just switch?
A: The depletion of IPv4 addresses was predicted years ago, so the switch has been in progress for the last decade. However, progress has been slow — only a small fraction of the web has switched over to the new protocol. In addition, IPv4 and IPv6 essentially run as parallel networks — exchanging data between these protocols requires special gateways.
To make the switch, software and routers will have to be changed to support the more advanced network. This will take time and money. The first real test of the IPv6 network will come on June 8, 2011, World IPv6 Day. Google, Facebook and other prominent web companies will test drive the IPv6 network to see what it can handle and what still needs to be done to get the world switched over to the new network.
Q: How will this affect me?
A: Initially, it won’t have a major impact on your life. Most operating systems actually support IPv6, including Mac OS X 10.2 and Windows XP SP 1. However, many routers and servers don’t support it, making a connection between a device with an IPv6 address to a router or server that only supports IPv4 impossible. IPv6 is also still in its infancy; it has a lot of bugs and security issues that still need to be fixed, which could result in one giant mess.
Nobody’s sure how the transition will cost or how long it will take, but it has to be done in order for the web to function as it does today.
More About: GuideinternetIPv4IPv6
For more Tech & Gadgets coverage:

Luke, I'm your Faadah...VW ad Darth Vadar costumed toddler

EFF report on FBI abuse of power prompted me to contact Senator Feinstein

February 3rd, 2011

Honorable Senator Dianne Feinstein
United States Senate
331 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510

Dear Senator Feinstein

Re: Patriot Act (S.193) FBI (ab)use of NSL's has to stop

My name is Paul Armstrong, and I write concerning the above captioned matter which I understand is to be taken up for consideration by the Senate Judiciary Committee today.    My intent is simple, a desire to express in the strongest possible terms the need to curtail the abuse of power that has been ongoing with respect to FBI practices, in particular  "National Security Letters" or "NSLs". Please stand firm and insist on meaningful reforms that return oversight to the courts. For background and elaboration of the concerns many citizens have when the government uses its broad surveillance powers under the PATRIOT Act I direct your staff's attention to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) at the following url  The EFF report, "Patterns of Misconduct", documents how the FBI has misused its NSL authority thousands of times over the past decade, highlighting the urgent need for new checks on the government’s PATRIOT powers. I am a supporting member of the EFF, and should your staff make use of the EFF resources they certainly should "due" the right thing and send in a pledge.   

     Thank you very much for your consideration of this matter and most of all thank you for decades of public service and the positive impact your efforts have brought to San Francisco, to the entire State of California, and the United States.    It is an honor and a privilege to proudly identify you as my Senator.

Very Truly Yours,


J. Paul Armstrong
58 s. Sixth St. #3
San Jose, CA 95112

Epic Fail @Kenneth Cole

@KennethCole Sets New Bar For Social Media Stupidity [Update: And Removes Tweet]
Alexia Tsotsis
2 hours ago
“We had hoped this ad would change the world but we blue it.”
- Kenneth Cole
Finally someone sees the unrest in Egypt for the marketing opportunity it truly is! I’ve now spent a couple hours reeling from how insensitive it was for designer Kenneth Cole to use#Cairo to publicize the availability of his spring collection online when the Egypt is erupting in violence and millions were cut off from Internet communication for days.
My first thought here was, uh oh, some PR person is getting fired for this, the most egregious case of hashtag surfing fail I’ve ever seen. But apparently the tweet came from Cole himself, signed “-KC.”
Married to former NY Governor Mario Cuomo’s daughter Maria, Kenneth Cole feels entitled to publish consistently superfical ads that dabble in politics, most notably one that equated abortion to purses, “Dear pro-life advocates, Isn’t it a woman’s right to choose? After all, she’s the one carrying it.”
Econsultancy points out that furniture maker Habitat pulled a similar move when it hopped on the hashtags #Iran and #Mousavi in order to blatantly advertise its website during the Iran election protests. It ended up firing the intern responsible and deleting the account.
What did Kenneth Cole do? He sent out this pithy apology tweet.
Kenneth Cole@KennethCole
Kenneth Cole
Re Egypt tweet: we weren't intending to make light of a serious situation. We understand the sensitivity of this historic moment -KC
“We weren’t intending to make light of a serious situation.” Bullshit. Yes, yes you were. That’s exactly what you were doing. As of yet the media fiasco, estimated 1500 negative retweets an hour and an @KennethColePR spoof account haven’t affected the company’s stock price. But trust me they will. They will.
Update: Kenneth Cole has deleted the original tweet, offering this apology on his Facebook page, in essence admitting that maybe it was too soon for Egypt jokes.
“I apologize to everyone who was offended by my insensitive tweet about the situation in Egypt. I’ve dedicated my life to raising awareness about serious social issues, and in hindsight my attempt at humor regarding a nation liberating themselves against oppression was poorly timed and absolutely inappropriate.”
Rolling through Germany? Gestapo by our new Berlin store!#KennethColeTweets
Michael Arrington@arrington
Michael Arrington
@KennethCole I look forward to slavery and holocaust jokes next.
Henry Blodget@hblodget
Henry Blodget
Hey, @kennethcole, who's the idiot who sent this tweet? Has he/she been fired yet?
Alexia Tsotsis@alexia
Alexia Tsotsis
Okay Internet, who do we hate more, Kenneth Cole or Mubarak?
Nathan Wurtzel@NathanWurtzel
Nathan Wurtzel
Hey, if you're planning a murder spree, look good doing so in @KennethCole's new spring collection!
Gabe Rivera@gaberivera
Gabe Rivera
Sadly, outrage over @KennethCole is mostly played out. Any other angles to take? E.g. Or maybe: Anti-outrage backlash?
Christine Lu@christinelu
Christine Lu
…looks like sh*t just hit the social media fan for Kenneth Cole today.
Jeremy Pepper@jspepper
Jeremy Pepper
@gaberivera Can my outrage be that KC has a history of such stunts and it's their strategy for press. Must be the clothes/shoes suck.
Our Tucson store is locked and loaded with Spring looks!#KennethColeTweets