IPv6 Migration

The Internet has grown exponentially and the current IP address space (32 bits) is not able to satisfy the huge number of expected connections, therefore, the implementation of IPv6, which provides 128 bits of address space, should be considered in future network design.
It is necessary to assign IPv6 addresses in a hierarchical way based on network architecture to ensure transmission efficiency of a network. In addition, it is required to consider the following issues: preventing fragmentation of addresses, ensuring spare bandwidth to cope with future demand growth, enhancing efficiency of network management and guaranteeing scalability and flexibility of address assignment.
Migration to IPv6 is more than just address space; it was developed to overcome problems related to the limitations of IPv4:

  • Simplified header formats
  • This allows packets to have better header structure, which leads to better processing performance
  • Hierarchical addressing and routing
  • This keeps the routing table small by using address prefixes instead of address classes
  • Security
  • IPv6 is able to perform better authentication and privacy through AH and ESP extension headers
  • Quality of Service (QoS)
  • IPv6 provides efficient QoS handling due to flow label ability in the header
    There are number of proposed transition strategies from IPv4 to IPv6, defined by IETF.
  • Dual-stack
  • It is a coexistence strategy, defined in RFC 4213, which supports both IPv4 and IPv6 protocols in parallel.
  • Address translation
  • It is a mechanism to allow IPv4 –only devices to communicate with IPv6-only devices
  • Tunneling
  • It is a mechanism to transmit IPv6 traffics over IPv4 connection, by encapsulating those traffics within IPv4 packets.

Various standards and technologies for IPv6 conversion have been introduced to resolve compatibility issues with existing IPv4 system. Building a test-bed reduces trial-and-error and it will promote to stable conversion. After testing with the test-bed, it is recommended to conduct sufficient interworking tests before applying to the network to cope with any unexpected issues. It is required to perform diverse interworking tests to check service flows in network infrastructure such as international networks, backbone networks, subscriber networks or servers, as well as compatibility of diverse subscriber terminals.

FavaPars consulting firm has a core group of senior network experts with a lot of hands-on experience. We provide IPv6 solutions that are best suitable for client’s network. For instance, one of our projects related to IPv6 was implementing NAT64/DNS64 for TCI (telecommunication Company of Iran). After a complete analysis on TCI’s current network, we implemented a pilot test and demonstrated our results to TCI’s chief technical officer (CTO).

The pilot was based on Ubuntu operating system and the following packages:

  • RADVD (Router Advertisement Daemon): this package includes link-local advertisements of IPv6 addresses and prefixes
  • TOTD: This package includes DNS64 and forwarding daemon
  • TAYGA: This package includes NAT64
  • WIDE-DHCPv6-SERVER: This package includes DHCPv6
The proposed pilot test is a plug and play solution, in a way that users are able to dynamically receive IPv6 addresses and access the internet through NAT64/DNS64 mechanism.

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