transition from IPv6 to IPv4

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Managing the Transition to ipv6

Introduction

With the increased demand and use of internet, the transition of the internet protocol from IPv4 to IPv6 has become inevitable (Jayanthi, & Rabara, 2016). In fact, a number of solutions for IPv6 transitions have been proposed and tested by the internet providers. However, the majority of them have never been successful in application or implementation, as some are already obsolete. Currently, solutions for transition to IPv6 are continuously being worked about. The main variation among the transition solutions is the management aspect which in real world has great impacts on the key networking elements such as provisioning, addressing as well as network performance. This paper therefore entails a comprehensive research on the effective management of the transition of IPv4   to IPv6.

Literature Review

Even though the IPv6 standards involves new  features that are above the virtually scarce address spaces including increased reliability and security, the world is  still largely running on IPv4 (Wu et al. 2016). As the new network technologies continues to progressively continue to push services and users towards something which would eventually become an all-IPv6 network, network service providers and customers would require to be very well equipped to adopt, manage, and finally support IPv6 as an architecture of dual network for the transition duration. Effective management of the transition of the IPv6 requires IPv4 to remain on hold through the period (Jayanthi, & Rabara, 2016). Considering the insufficiency of urgencies for most of the associated transition companies including the America companies, majority of the internet providers will be required to provide their internet services over both the two internet protocols for quite sometimes into the foreseeable future. This has however been confirmed to contribute to an abnormal increase rather than decrease in the cost especially in the short-run since the duties and other services that are used in the provision of routing services and other associated infrastructure would be obviously duplicated or replicated (Jayanthi, & Rabara, 2016).

For most of the companies or business enterprises, lack of precise applications, overhead effective management and administration for operating a dual stack network protocols that can possibly surpass the benefits of transiting to IPv6. Nevertheless, some of the middle care internet providers particularly those who may not be having the intension of benefiting their consumers, might perceive such management and operation expenses as not important, unnecessary and perhaps resolve to offer their services over the IPv6, which in the real sense would limit their market coverage. In cases of poor enterprise management and improper decision making, other business institution or companies are likely to find themselves compelled to adopt and use IPv6 perhaps due to the demand of their business partners regardless of not feeling any limitation of using IPv4 for themselves (Hsieh, & Kao, 2017). Besides, currently the actual returns of the investment of IPv6 business are no clear evidence.

Unfortunately, the general initiatives to encourage and manage successful transition to IPv6 have failed to succeed. This is attributed to one fact which might be due to the lack of both empirical and theoretical research studies to give them proper information on the right approach to transit to IPv6 technology. Disregarding the reliance to encourage the transition of IPv6 in many organizations and business organizations across the world, there have been few discussions regarding the management of the transition of IPv4 to IPv6. According to Jayanthi, & Rabara (2017), it is appropriate and possible that mechanisms of the market might encourage and help in the management of the IPv6 adoption and successful transition to IPv6.This transition is achievable by simply offering the business enterprises holding IPv4 address spaces that required incentives and efforts to relinquish the spaces for IPv4 and effect the necessary steps for the transition to IPv6. Hitherto, other businesses enterprises as well as the internet service providers are not readily willing to share the confidence in the capability of the market to encourage the transition to IPv6. Hsieh, & Kao (2017) iterate that successful enterprises would however not stop the eventual migration to IPv6 though could somehow prolong it through extending the span of the use of IPv4 space addresses. On the other hand, Wu et al. (2016) propose that it is never guaranteed that the management of such markets since enough sellers and buyers might not be attracted or show interest in such markets. In addition, the economy around the globe are continuously becoming dependent on the world’s communication networks to an extent at which it is fast reaching the juncture at which further progress would be a great problem. Moreover, despite being part of the major economic aspects, managerial and economic analyses of the transition to IPv6 are currently rare (Wu et al. 2016).

According to the network management studies, IPv6 is undoubtedly offering numerous enterprise benefits; however successful transition to adopt and implement it requires effective management and planning (Bi, Wu, & Leng, 2016). Additionally, since access to internet has lately become ubiquitous, the huge number of the connected computers and other communication devices has completely exhausted the supply of the available spaces of IP address. In response, the IPv6 address is the current protocol which is specifically designed to address problem depletion of the IP addresses by making available over 340 undecillion new IP addresses. This can however only be achieved while using a more robust addressing system of over 128 bits as compared to the inferior IPv4 format which only make use of addressing system on about 32 bits supplying approximately 4.3 billion addresses (Hsieh, & Kao, 2017).

Step for the Transition to IPv6

As part of managing the transition to IPv6, there are a few key strategic steps that need to be considered for the adoption and implementation of the IPv6 within the stipulated enterprise environment (Hsieh, & Kao, 2017). One, thorough readiness assessment must be performed earlier enough before the actual implementation of so as to assist in evaluating and analyzing their current infrastructures. This assessment requires the involvement of effective and serious inventory inspection so as to ensure good support for IPv6 by the network, servers, the DNS provider and any other related support equipment (Bi, Wu, & Leng, 2016). Transition team should also involve prudent review of all the available vendors or providers so as to ensure the acquisition of IPv6 with the right and corresponding features.

Secondly, the enterprise management team should then establish the applications that are capable of connecting through IPv4. This aspect would assist enterprises to determine the communication areas that are likely to be impacted by the transition to IPv6 and allow it to ensure the continuation of the support and services. In that regard, the transiting enterprise will have to assess the IPv6 knowledge level of its IT staff so as to establish whether they would require training for effective use of such new network technologies. After completing the initial analysis process, Jayanthi, & Rabara (2016), argue that  the company communication management will then have to decide on whether to progress with a complete IPv6 infrastructure or if some sense would be made from the implementation of dual-stack. The implementation of dual-stack would offer the business more flexibility since it allow for more time for gradual conversion to IPv6 from IPv4, however it would add one or more complexity areas to the network (Bi, Wu, & Leng, 2016).

Finally, after deciding on the right management approach to use, the business enterprise will be required to come up with an IPv6 transition and implementation layout that would inclusively take into consideration all the applicable logistics shifting and changing all the equipment available communication equipment to IPv6 or simply installing completely new equipment (Wang, Wu, & Cui, 2016). Proper transition planning and management should also consider acknowledging all the possible effects of transition to IPv6 on the side of the end users and also establish viable strategies for solving such impacts in case of any managerial problem arising from the transition.

 

Conclusion

In summary, transition from IPv6 to IPv4 is great and has significant improvement of the network technology since it offers business enterprises with a more advanced and enhanced communication capacities that have for so long been unavailable previously and to some extent unimaginable. However, for effective and smooth transition in any business enterprise or organization, a proper IT management should be put in place. In addition, there are normally possible pitfalls that are inherent in the transition as well as the general poor management of the transition process that should be promptly addressed. It is therefore upon the transiting enterprises to carefully think about how they would appropriately manage the operation both in safe and cost-effective way, with minimum effects on the business operations.

 

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