Internode rejects claims June 8, 2011 will be the end of the internet or an IPocalypse

  • New internet protocol
  • Similar to Y2K concerns
  • Internode upgrading to IPV6

Like all non-tech head types, you are probably unaware that June 8, 2011 is World IPv6 Day. What does this mean? Every website on the internet has an IP address, a numbered address that informs computers where to go when someone clicks their mouse onto a specific site. Currently the world is using Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4 addresses), but sadly there is a finite number of only 4 billion addresses of this type available, and internet prophets say these will run out this year.

This “running out” of addresses on the internet has been coined the “IPocalypse”, as some doomsayers believe it will cause the end of the internet. However, amongst many positive voices, Australian Internet Service Provider (ISP) Internode believes the advent of a new technology called IPv6 will actually improve the internet as we know it.

IPv6 reportedly has an incredibly large number of potential IP addresses, which means there will always be a place for you to create a new website or host an email account on the web. This new technology is well established in certain technical circles, but has yet to be released on a societal level.

We are about to enter a protocol transition period, as the two types of IP addresses are not compatible with each other. This changeover period will last a number of years, and although in all likelihood you won’t notice any difference, some people regard any major change in human life with fear. During the transition period internet users will be assigned both IPv4 and IPv6 addresses in a “dual stack” form.

Internode leads Australian ISPs in its testing and adoption of IPv6 addresses, even offering a public trial to its customers as far back as November 2009. World IPv6 Day will see the majority of large internet companies around the world enabling IPv6 on their websites for a 24-hour period.

Internode managing director Simon Hackett says the internet is not going to implode anytime soon. “Done right, consumers don't notice IPv6 … Internode has made sure our customers won't be disadvantaged through this large, significant change 'under the hood' of the Internet, and we welcome a chance to show our customers how seamless IPv6 is with Internode, even now, ahead of our official move to full production deployment later this year. Internode encourages our peers in the Internet industry to explore and pursue IPv6 engagement as well.”

The reason a World IPv6 Day exists is to raise the profile of IPv6 in the broader internet community. Ideally, internet-based companies and organisations will become motivated to begin preparations for a changeover to the new technology, so they won’t have any problems when the current number of IPv4 addresses runs out. Whether you are a broadband company, sell operating systems, or simply have a small online business, like Internode it is now a good time to help set this necessary change in motion. Remember the notorious “Y2K” fear in 1999, when people thought all of the computers in the world would fail? Prove the naysayers wrong by embracing this new step in the evolution of internet technology.