Wait!Â Don’t panic!Â If all goes well, you won’t even notice.Â Today Is IPV6 Day, Worldwide.Â Businesses and organizations are testing a new version of the Internet, Internet Protocol Version 6, or IPV6. (We’re currently using IPV4, in case you didn’t know.)
Apparently, our current version of the Internet is running out of space.Â Who knew?Â But I guess, if you stop to think about it, it does make sense.
What I gather is that it has to do with the number of devices that are accessing and using the internet.Â There just isn’t enough space on the current version of the Internet to support all of the activity.Â Each device that accesses the internet requires an IP address. As the number of Internet-accessible devices has grown, we’ve started to run out of IP addresses for all those items.Â You can read (or listen) to more about IP address scarcity at NPR.org.
In my home, I have at least 5 devices that access the Internet: my laptop, my husband’s laptop, my cell phone, my office phone, and my TV.Â And what about my cable box?Â Does that access the internet?Â Or my router?Â And I think my GPS for my car accesses the Internet.Â I am not a techie, so I don’t really know, but I think it’s possible there are other items I am not even aware are using the Internet.Â That NPR interview mentions that even some refrigerators access the Internet nowadays!
Well, apparently it’s both a test, and a promotion, wrapped into one.Â Since it’s only a 24-hour period, what do you really have to lose?Â If something does go wrong, it reverts back to the old Internet tomorrow. (That’s the testing part.)Â And, hopefully, nothing does go wrong.Â If not, it’s a fantastic demonstration that it works, and a great opportunity to say, “come on over to our side” to other businesses. (That’s the promotional part.)
A number of large organizations have signed on to participate.Â That way, all the big names are in it together: if something goes wrong, they all suffer together, and none of them loses face while competitors get the upper hand.Â Wow!Â Who knew businesses could be so collegial?!Â You can check out the World IPV6 Day website to learn more about the event, see lists of participants, or test your IPV6 connectivity.
Have more insight to add?Â Experienced an IPV6 problem with a site today?Â Share it with other Grok readers.