A long time between posts, but starting up again with a note on IPv6.
Last year, I posted about Microsoft Bing and Xbox.com Support World IPv6 Day. This year, we welcome World IPv6 Launch (which kicks off tomorrow) as we once again work with other members of the Internet Society (ISOC) on promoting this next step in the progression of the Internet, Microsoft will participate in World IPv6 Day. (For more information on IPv6, you can Bing it: http://www.bing.com/search?q=ipv6) If you read this blog, you already know that the transition to IPv6 is not the End of the World. No, Really.
Microsoft, along with other technology companies, has been working on the deployment of IPv6 to ensure that end-users continue to have high-quality Internet access, despite the performance and connectivity limitations brought about by IPv4 address exhaustion.
The most immediate benefit of IPv6 is that it provides more than 3×1038 IP addresses, enough for every person to have billions of addresses all to themselves, or enough to give every atom in the universe a unique address. This will allow the Internet to grow and evolve. IPv6 also provides for many security and performance improvements, like built-in support for IPsec. (What happened to IPv5, you ask? Bing can help you find out why it’s being “skipped.”)
Upgrading the entire Internet to IPv6 isn’t something that can be done instantly. It has taken many years to get to where we are today, and we still have many years of work to do. Currently, around 1% of devices can connect to the Internet using only IPv6.
As noted, the entire Internet is gradually shifting to IPv6, representing a foundational shift in every Internet experience. Microsoft is taking this transition very seriously, and working to ensure there is no interruption of service for our users as IPv6 is widely deployed. Since IPv6 was fully introduced in Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista, Microsoft has been working to support this next generation Internet protocol.
Most consumers and computer users won't see any a major impact today: your current IPv4 address, as well as the applications and services you use today over IPv4 will likely be unaffected and continue to work, as Internet service providers (ISPs) and your network administrators will support your connection to the Internet. The tables below provide a summary view of the IPv6 support status of various services and products from Microsoft. Where available, links to more information about the support state of the products have been included. Consumers with IPv6 Internet capabilities – with both a device that supports IPv6 (like a Windows 7 PC) and support from your Internet provider – will automatically utilize IPv6 when connected to participating website. While the protocols are different, the browsing experiences of IPv4 and IPv6 are identical.
For IT professionals and technical users, additional information about server products is available through our Common Engineering Criteria (CEC). A set of engineering requirements are outlined for our Server products as part of the CEC program, which includes support for IPv6.
Microsoft maintains the Microsoft IPv6 information site on TechNet to provide more information on this new IP. There you can read more about how we've already built IPv6 support into the latest versions of Microsoft Windows, including Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, and even in older versions such as Windows Vista, Windows Server 2003, and even Windows XP and Windows CE .NET. We offer overviews of IPv6, technical information, deployment and developer resources, including an overview of Teredo, the Microsoft platform that provides IPv6 connectivity across the current IPv4 Internet.
So, consumers, sit back and relax, knowing that (likely) your Internet Service Providers and Mobile Operators are hard at work to ensure that you have a seamless transition to IPv6. I know many IT Professionals and developers already have plans and efforts already to make to move to IPv6 (some are already there). For the ones who haven't: get a plan in place lickity split and get a move on. Your customers and users are counting on it.
You can also read bout the next iteration in my post on IPv6 SP1. 😉
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