What is IPv6?
IPv6 is the most recent iteration of IP addressing which is slated to replace the current IP addressing solution - IPv4. The impetus for the development of IPv6 was an anticipated shortage of IPv4 addresses due to the rapid expansion of internet connected devices.
Due to the structure of IPv4 there are roughly 4 billion addresses available, whereas IPv6 has upwards of 340 undecillion available IP addresses. Yes undecillion is a real number, a 1 with 36 zeros.
IPv6 Addressing Structure
IPv4 and IPv6 stand for Internet Protocol version 4 and 6 respectively. The primary difference between IPv4 and IPv6 is in the bit length utilized for addressing; IPv4 is 32-bit while IPv6 is 128-bit. An Example of what this difference in bits looks like:
- Standard IPv4 address: 18.104.22.168
- Standard IPv6 address: fe80:a921:0000:0000:23ee:1221:65ba:2222
An IPv4 address consists of 4 numbers between the values of 0 and 255 separated by periods. An IPv6 address on the other hand consists of 8 sections comprised of 4 hexadecimal digits (meaning the numbers 0-9 AND the letters a-f) separated by colons.
Benefits of IPv6
- Expanded IP addressing capabilities; sufficient IP addresses to last into the foreseeable future
- Improved Privacy and Security; IPv6 supports more robust authentication and data integrity methods
Will IPv4 Still Work?
Yes. While IPv6 is the future of IP addressing, the internet as a whole is still in a transition period and not everyone has adopted IPv6. Until that transition is complete, which may take years, both IPv4 and IPv6 will co-exist and work in tandem.
Can I Disable IPv6?
Yes, you can! To disable IPv6 you just need to change the configuration or settings in your router. If you are renting a router from Sonic you can reach out to our Support team to assist you in making this configuration change. If you are using your own device please refer to the user manual for guidance.