News / Science & Technology

Next Generation Internet Addresses Being Tested

A visual representation of allocated IPv4 Internet addresses as of November  2010, from the LANDER project at the University of Southern California (USC).
A visual representation of allocated IPv4 Internet addresses as of November 2010, from the LANDER project at the University of Southern California (USC).
William Ide

On Wednesday, Google, Facebook, Yahoo! and other major Internet companies will participate in what is being called IPv6 or Internet Protocol Version 6 Test Day. The 24-hour trial run is being held to test a new communication system for the Internet, which computer experts say is needed as more and more devices go online and the Web is quickly running out of addresses.

It’s likely that you may not even notice it, but on Wednesday, across the globe, the Internet will be taking a test flight to try out a new system that will eventually lead to a dramatic increase in the number of addresses on the World Wide Web.

“We now have a tremendous number of users on the internet. And the Internet protocol or think of it as the Internet telephone number that exists for everybody on the Internet is kind of running out,” said David Gewirtz, an Internet expert at the U.S. Strategic Perspectives Institute.

“When this stuff came into play 30 some odd years ago, people never expected that everybody on a cell phone would have an Internet address, everybody with a video game console would have an Internet address and so and so forth.  And so now as the Internet becomes the wiring that connects everybody in the world, there’s not enough Internet phone numbers or IP addresses for all of those devices.”

The Internet Society, a non-profit organization based in Reston, Virginia that focuses on Internet standards, policy and education is promoting the trial run.

Leslie Daigle, is the group’s chief Internet Technology Officer. “Once it escaped the research lab (IPv4) and started becoming an important component of everyday life.  It was pretty clear that IPv4, which only has four billion addresses, would not be enough to serve the needs of the world. I mean, do the math. There are fewer IPv4 addresses than there are people on the face of the earth.”

Why so many IP addresses

In a blog posting this week, Google called the test run an important milestone, adding that the deployment of IPv6 is crucial to the continued growth of the Internet.

Organizers hope Wednesday’s event will boost awareness and promote what has so far been a slow shift to the new system.

Daigle says it would be valuable if the new system accounted for 20 percent of the Internet’s traffic by next year.

“In terms of actual numbers, we still see almost vanishingly small amount of IPv6 traffic on the Internet. It’s on the order of one and a half to three percent of the traffic that comes over IPv6 depending on whose measurements you use,” Daigle said.

Daigle says more than 400 organizations from across the globe are participating in the IPv6 Test Day. Internet service providers and government's including the European Commission and U.S. government websites will join in the test.

China has been aggressively positioning itself to make the transition to IPv6.  During the 2008 Beijing Olympics, China showcased the IPv6 infrastructure.

China has set up a website to mark IPv6 Test Day, which includes a list of more than 100 sites that it says are running on the next generation system.

Gewirtz says China’s aggressive approach highlights its desire to promote technological development and the reality that it has a huge population.

“They have 1.2 billion people, which is pretty much the number of IPv4 addresses total. So for China to be fully on the Internet, in it’s full glory moving into the 21st century it needs more phone numbers or essentially more Internet addresses,” Gewirtz said.

According to statistics in China, the country already has more than 450 million Internet users and 66 percent of Chinese access the Internet using cell phones.

During Wednesday's test, Google says most users will be unaffected, but that it will place a prominent a notice on Google Search's main page for those who may not be able to connect and direct them to a test page to see if the connection is working.

You May Like

Computer Crash Halts US Visa, Passport Operation

Problems with database have resulted in extensive backlog of applications, affected State Department's consular offices all over the world More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

World Bank: Boko Haram Stalls African Aid Projects

Islamist group’s terrorism sets back agriculture, health efforts in Cameroon, Chad and Nigeria More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid