Getting on the IPv6 wagon
Not really sure that this is a wagon, it is more like freight train that is headed for us at full steam. We have finally reached the point where Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) has handed out the last of the old IPv4 address blocks to the Regional Internet Registries (RIR). As the IANA website states:
The IANA’s role is to allocate IP addresses from the pools of unallocated addresses to the RIRs according to their needs as described by global policy and to document protocol assignments made by the IETF.
From this point on the only type of addressing that will be assigned to the RIR is IPv6 blocks. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately for the rest of us still stuck in IPv4 land, the RIR still have a stash of IPv4 addresses that they are willing to assign. the question though, is why would you want to settle on old school addressing when you could be surfing the web on one of those new shinny IPv6 Addresses you have been hearing about. Well I figured as much and decided it was time to get my home network out of the dark ages of networking and into the future that is IPv6.
Well probably like you I had to first learn a thing or two about IPv6. Since I am currently in the US, I went off to the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) in the hope of getting a block of IPv6 addresses assigned to me. The smallest block that they assign is a /40 IPv6 address block. That is 2^(128-40) == 2^88 == 3.094850098213453e+26 addresses, a lot more than I could ever hope to use, let alone how much I would need to pay for it, $1,250 per year. The long of the story is I needed to find an Internet Service Provider (ISP) that would give me a smaller, more manageable address assignment, or use a tunnel provider like Freenet6. I went both routes in order to have IPv6 at home as well as at my service provider.
It turns out the smallest assignment you can get for IPv6 is a /56. From this you are supposed to create subnets of /64. As such you can create 2^(64-56) == 2^8 == 256 subnets. Each of these subnets can hold 2^64 == 1.844674407370955e+19 addressable devices. Still a lot more than I would ever need.
In the next couple of articles I will show you how I setup the home network to use Freenet6 and the remote location at an ISP to use directly connected IPv6 network.