How Is The Ipv6 Address Different Than An Ipv4 Address_
What’s the Difference Between IPv4 and IPv6? – Guru99
What is IP?
An IP (Internet Protocol) address is a numerical label assigned to each device connected to a computer network that uses the IP protocol for communication. An IP address acts as an identifier for a specific device on a particular network. The IP address is also called an IP number or Internet address.
IP address specifies the technical format of the addressing and packets scheme. Most networks combine IP with a TCP (Transmission Control Protocol). It also allows developing a virtual connection between a destination and a source.
Now in this IPv4 and IPv6 difference tutorial, we will learn What is IPv4 and IPv6?
What is IPv4?
IPv4 is an IP version widely used to identify devices on a network using an addressing system. It was the first version of IP deployed for production in the ARPANET in 1983. It uses a 32-bit address scheme to store 2^32 addresses which is more than 4 billion addresses. It is considered the primary Internet Protocol and carries 94% of Internet traffic.
What is IPv6?
IPv6 is the most recent version of the Internet Protocol. This new IP address version is being deployed to fulfill the need for more Internet addresses. It was aimed to resolve issues that are associated with IPv4. With 128-bit address space, it allows 340 undecillion unique address space. IPv6 is also called IPng (Internet Protocol next generation).
Internet Engineer Taskforce initiated it in early 1994. The design and development of that suite are now called IPv6.
IPv4 is 32-Bit IP address whereas IPv6 is a 128-Bit IP address.
IPv4 is a numeric addressing method whereas IPv6 is an alphanumeric addressing method.
IPv4 binary bits are separated by a dot(. ) whereas IPv6 binary bits are separated by a colon(:).
IPv4 offers 12 header fields whereas IPv6 offers 8 header fields.
IPv4 supports broadcast whereas IPv6 doesn’t support broadcast.
IPv4 has checksum fields while IPv6 doesn’t have checksum fields
When we compare IPv4 and IPv6, IPv4 supports VLSM (Variable Length Subnet Mask) whereas IPv6 doesn’t support VLSM.
IPv4 uses ARP (Address Resolution Protocol) to map to MAC address whereas IPv6 uses NDP (Neighbour Discovery Protocol) to map to MAC address.
Features of IPv4
Following are the features of IPv4:
Allow creating a simple virtual communication layer over diversified devices
It requires less memory, and ease of remembering addresses
Already supported protocol by millions of devices
Offers video libraries and conferences
Features of IPv6
Here are the features of IPv6:
Hierarchical addressing and routing infrastructure
Stateful and Stateless configuration
Support for quality of service (QoS)
An ideal protocol for neighboring node interaction
IPv4 vs IPv6
Difference Between IPv4 and IPv6 Addresses
IPv4 & IPv6 are both IP addresses that are binary numbers. Comparing IPv6 vs IPv4, IPv4 is 32 bit binary number while IPv6 is 128 bit binary number address. IPv4 address are separated by periods while IPv6 address are separated by colons.
Both are used to identify machines connected to a network. In principle, they are the same, but they are different in how they work. Below are the main differences between IPv4 and IPv6:
Basis for differences
Size of IP address
IPv4 is a 32-Bit IP Address.
IPv6 is 128 Bit IP Address.
IPv4 is a numeric address, and its binary bits are separated by a dot (. )
IPv6 is an alphanumeric address whose binary bits are separated by a colon (:). It also contains hexadecimal.
Number of header fields
Length of header filed
Has checksum fields
Does not have checksum fields
12. 244. 233. 165
Type of Addresses
Unicast, broadcast, and multicast.
Unicast, multicast, and anycast.
Number of classes
IPv4 offers five different classes of IP Address. Class A to E.
lPv6 allows storing an unlimited number of IP Address.
You have to configure a newly installed system before it can communicate with other systems.
In IPv6, the configuration is optional, depending upon on functions needed.
IPv4 support VLSM (Variable Length Subnet mask).
IPv6 does not offer support for VLSM.
Fragmentation is done by sending and forwarding routes.
Fragmentation is done by the sender.
Routing Information Protocol (RIP)
RIP is a routing protocol supported by the routed daemon.
RIP does not support IPv6. It uses static routes.
Networks need to be configured either manually or with DHCP. IPv4 had several overlays to handle Internet growth, which require more maintenance efforts.
IPv6 support autoconfiguration capabilities.
Widespread use of NAT (Network address translation) devices which allows single NAT address can mask thousands of
non-routable addresses, making end-to-end
It allows direct addressing because of vast address
Use for the designated network from host portion.
SNMP is a protocol used for system management.
SNMP does not support IPv6.
Mobility & Interoperability
Relatively constrained network topologies to which move restrict mobility and interoperability capabilities.
IPv6 provides interoperability and mobility
capabilities which are embedded in network devices.
Security is dependent on applications – IPv4 was not designed with security in mind.
IPSec(Internet Protocol Security) is built into the IPv6 protocol, usable with
a proper key infrastructure.
Packet size 576 bytes required, fragmentation optional
1208 bytes required without fragmentation
Allows from routers and sending host
Sending hosts only
Does not identify packet flow for QoS handling which includes checksum options.
Packet head contains Flow Label field that specifies packet flow for QoS handling
Address (A) records, maps hostnames
Address (AAAA) records, maps hostnames
Manual or via DHCP
Stateless address autoconfiguration using Internet Control Message Protocol version 6 (ICMPv6) or DHCPv6
IP to MAC resolution
Multicast Neighbour Solicitation
Local subnet Group management
Internet Group Management Protocol GMP)
Multicast Listener Discovery (MLD)
Has Optional Fields
Does not have optional fields. But Extension headers are available.
Internet Protocol Security (IPSec) concerning network security is optional
Internet Protocol Security (IPSec) Concerning network security is mandatory
Dynamic host configuration Server
Clients have approach DHCS (Dynamic Host Configuration server) whenever they want to connect to a network.
A Client does not have to approach any such server as they are given permanent addresses.
Uses ARP(Address Resolution Protocol) to map to MAC address
Uses NDP(Neighbour Discovery Protocol) to map to MAC address
Combability with mobile devices
IPv4 address uses the dot-decimal notation. That’s why it is not suitable for mobile networks.
IPv6 address is represented in hexadecimal, colon- separated notation.
IPv6 is better suited to mobile
IPv4 and IPv6 cannot communicate with other but can exist together on the same network. This is known as Dual Stack.
IPv4 vs. IPv6 Benefits – What is it? | ThousandEyes
What is IPv6?
IPv6 is the next generation Internet Protocol (IP) address standard intended to supplement and eventually replace IPv4, the protocol many Internet services still use today. Every computer, mobile phone, home automation component, IoT sensor and any other device connected to the Internet needs a numerical IP address to communicate between other devices. The original IP address scheme, called IPv4, is running out of addresses due to its widespread usage from the proliferation of so many connected devices.
What is IPv4?
IPv4 stands for Internet Protocol version 4. It is the underlying technology that makes it possible for us to connect our devices to the web. Whenever a device accesses the Internet, it is assigned a unique, numerical IP address such as 99. 48. 227. To send data from one computer to another through the web, a data packet must be transferred across the network containing the IP addresses of both devices.
Why Support IPv6? What are the benefits of IPv6?
IPv6 (Internet Protocol version 6) is the sixth revision to the Internet Protocol and the successor to IPv4. It functions similarly to IPv4 in that it provides the unique IP addresses necessary for Internet-enabled devices to communicate. However, it does have one significant difference: it utilizes a 128-bit IP address.
Key benefits to IPv6 include:
No more NAT (Network Address Translation)
No more private address collisions
Better multicast routing
Simpler header format
Simplified, more efficient routing
True quality of service (QoS), also called “flow labeling”
Built-in authentication and privacy support
Flexible options and extensions
Easier administration (no more DHCP)
IPv4 uses a 32-bit address for its Internet addresses. That means it can provide support for 2^32 IP addresses in total â around 4. 29 billion. That may seem like a lot, but all 4. 29 billion IP addresses have now been assigned, leading to the address shortage issues we face today.
IPv6 utilizes 128-bit Internet addresses. Therefore, it can support 2^128 Internet addresses—340, 282, 366, 920, 938, 463, 463, 374, 607, 431, 768, 211, 456 of them to be exact. The number of IPv6 addresses is 1028 times larger than the number of IPv4 addresses. So there are more than enough IPv6 addresses to allow for Internet devices to expand for a very long time.
The text form of the IPv6 address is xxxx:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx, where each x is a hexadecimal digit, representing 4 bits. Leading zeros can be omitted. The double colon (::) can be used once in the text form of an address, to designate any number of 0 bits.
With Dual-IP stacks, your computers, routers, switches, and other devices run both protocols, but IPv6 is the preferred protocol. A typical procedure for businesses is to start by enabling both TCP/IP protocol stacks on the wide area network (WAN) core routers, then perimeter routers and firewalls, followed by data-center routers and finally the desktop access routers.
ThousandEyes Support for IPv6
With IPv6 becoming more prevalent in cloud provider and consumer access networks, you may already be on the path to IPv6 deployment with your network and applications.
If you are looking to understand IPv6 in your environment there are three things you should be monitoring:
IPv6 DNS resolution
IPv6 traffic paths
IPv6 BGP prefixes and routes
ThousandEyes has support for IPv6 so that organizations can utilize IPv6 across all of their test types (web, network, voice, routing) and agent types (cloud, enterprise, endpoint).
ThousandEyes Cloud Agent support for IPv6 is provided on six continents allowing global coverage for organizations. ThousandEyes also supports the use of dual-stack IPv4 and IPv6 Enterprise Agents. Enterprise Agents can have both addresses assigned and executes tests based on a user-defined preference for only IPv4, only IPv6 or a preference for IPv6.
IPv4 vs IPv6: Understanding the Differences and Looking Ahead
As the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to grow exponentially, more devices connect online daily. There has been fear that, at some point, addresses would just run out. This conjecture is starting to come true.
Have no fear; the Internet is not coming to an end. There is a solution to the problem of diminishing IPv4 addresses. We will provide information on how more addresses can be created, and outline the main issues that need to be tackled to keep up with the growth of IoT by adopting IPv6.
We also examine how Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) vs. Internet Protocol 4 (IPv4) plays an important role in the Internet’s future and evolution, and how the newer version of the IP is superior to older IPv4.
How an IP Address Works
IP stands for “Internet Protocol, ” referring to a set of rules which govern how data packets are transmitted across the Internet.
Information online or traffic flows across networks using unique addresses. Every device connected to the Internet or computer network gets a numerical label assigned to it, an IP address that is used to identify it as a destination for communication.
Your IP identifies your device on a particular network. It’s I. D. in a technical format for networks that combine IP with a TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) and enables virtual connections between a source and destination. Without a unique IP address, your device couldn’t attempt communication.
IP addresses standardize the way different machines interact with each other. They trade data packets, which refer to encapsulated bits of data that play a crucial part in loading webpages, emails, instant messaging, and other applications which involve data transfer.
Several components allow traffic to flow across the Internet. At the point of origin, data is packaged into an envelope when the traffic starts. This process is referred to as a “datagram. ” It is a packet of data and part of the Internet Protocol or IP.
A full network stack is required to transport data across the Internet. The IP is just one part of that stack. The stack can be broken down into four layers, with the Application component at the top and the Datalink at the bottom.
Application – HTTP, FTP, POP3, SMTPTransport – TCP, UDPNetworking – IP, ICMPDatalink – Ethernet, ARP
As a user of the Internet, you’re probably quite familiar with the application layer. It’s one that you interact with daily. Anytime you want to visit a website; you type in [web address], which is the Application.
Are you using an email application? At some point then, you would have set up an email account in that application, and likely came across POP3 or SMTP during the configuration process. POP3 stands for Post Office Protocol 3 and is a standard method of receiving an email. It collects and retains email for you until picked up.
From the above stack, you can see that the IP is part of the networking layer. IPs came into existence back in 1982 as part of ARPANET. IPv1 through IPv3 were experimental versions. IPv4 is the first version of IP used publicly, the world over.
IPv4 or Internet Protocol Version 4 is a widely used protocol in data communication over several kinds of networks. It is the fourth revision of the Internet protocol. It was developed as a connectionless protocol for using in packet-switched layer networks like Ethernet. Its primary responsibility is to provide logical connections between network devices, which includes providing identification for every device.
IPv4 is based on the best-effort model, which guarantees neither delivery nor avoidance of a duplicate delivery and is hired by the upper layer transport protocol, such as the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP). IPv4 is flexible and can automatically or manually be configured with a range of different devices depending on the type of network.
Technology Behind IPv4
IPv4 is both specified and defined in the Internet Engineering Task Force’s (IETF) publication RFC 791, used in the packet-switched link layer in OSI models. It uses a total of five classes of 32-bit addresses for Ethernet communication: A, B, C, D, and E. Of these, classes A, B, and C have a different bit length for dealing with network hosts, while Class D is used for multi-casting. The remaining Class E is reserved for future use.
Subnet Mask of Class A – 255. 0. 0 or /8
Subnet Mask of Class B – 255. 255. 0 or /16
Subnet Mask of Class C – 255. 0 or /24
Example: The Network 192. 168. 0 with a /16 subnet mask can use addresses ranging from 192. 0 to 192. It’s important to note that the address 192. 255 is reserved only for broadcasting within the users. Here, the IPv4 can assign host addresses to a maximum of 232 end users.
IP addresses follow a standard, decimal notation format:
171. 30. 2. 5
The above number is a unique 32-bit logical address. This setup means there can be up to 4. 3 billion unique addresses. Each of the four groups of numbers are 8 bits. Every 8 bits are called an octet. Each number can range from 0 to 255. At 0, all bits are set to 0. At 255, all bits are set to 1. The binary form of the above IP address is 10101011. 00011110. 00000010. 00000101.
Even with 4. 3 billion possible addresses, that’s not nearly enough to accommodate all of the currently connected devices. Device types are far more than just desktops. Now there are smartphones, hotspots, IoT, smart speakers, cameras, etc. The list keeps proliferating as technology progresses, and in turn, so do the number of devices.
Future of IPv4
IPv4 addresses are set to finally run out, making IPv6 deployment the only viable solution left for the long-term growth of the Internet. I
n October 2019, RIPE NCC, one of five Regional Internet Registries, which is responsible for assigning IP addresses to Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in over 80 nations, announced that only one million IPv4 addresses were left. Due to these limitations, IPv6 has been introduced as a standardized solution offering a 128-bit address length that can define up to 2128 nodes.
Recovered addresses will only be assigned via a waiting list. And that means only a couple hundred thousand addresses can be allotted per year, which is not nearly enough to cover the several million that global networks require today. The consequences are that network tools will be forced to rely on expensive and complicated solutions to work around the problem of fewer available addresses. The countdown to zero addresses means enterprises world-wide have to take stock of IP resources, find interim solutions, and prepare for IPv6 deployment, to overcome the inevitable outage.
In the interim, one popular solution to bridge over to IPv6 deployment is Carrier Grade Network Address Translation (CGNAT). This technology allows for the prolongated use of IPv4 addresses. It does so by allowing a single IP address to be distributed across thousands of devices. It only plugs the hole in the meantime as CGNAT cannot scale indefinitely. Every added device creates another layer on NAT, that increases its workload and complexity, and thereby raises the chances of a CGNAT failing. When this happens, thousands of users are impacted and cannot be quickly put back online.
One more commonly-used workaround is IPv4 address trading. This is a market for selling and buying IPv4 addresses that are no longer needed or used. It’s a risky play since prices are dictated by supply and demand, and it can become a complicated and expensive process to maintain the status quo.
IPv4 scarcity remains a massive concern for network operators. The Internet won’t break, but it is at a breaking point since networks will only find it harder and harder to scale infrastructure for growth. IPv4 exhaustion goes back to 2012 when the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) allotted the last IPv4 addresses to RIPE NCC. The long-anticipated run-out has been planned for by the technical community, and that’s where IPv6 comes in.
How Is IPv6 Different?
Internet Protocol Version 6 or IPv6 is the newest version of Internet Protocol used for carrying data in packets from one source to a destination via various networks. IPv6 is considered as an enhanced version of the older IPv4 protocol, as it supports a significantly larger number of nodes than the latter.
IPv6 allows up to 2128 possible combinations of nodes or addresses. It is also referred to as the Internet Protocol Next Generation or IPng. It was first developed in the hexadecimal format, containing eight octets to provide more substantial scalability. Released on June 6, 2012, it was also designed to deal with address broadcasting without including broadcast addresses in any class, the same as its predecessor.
Comparing Difference Between IPv4 and IPv6
Now that you know more about IPv4 and IPv6 in detail, we can summarize the differences between these two protocols in a table. Each has its deficits and benefits to offer.
Points of DifferenceIPV4IPV6Compatibility with Mobile DevicesAddresses use of dot-decimal notations, which make it less suitable for mobile dresses use hexadecimal colon-separated notations, which make it better suited to handle mobile ppingAddress Resolution Protocol is used to map to MAC ighbor Discovery Protocol is used to map to MAC Address. Dynamic Host Configuration ServerWhen connecting to a network, clients are required to approach Dynamic Host Configuration ients are given permanent addresses and are not required to contact any particular ternet Protocol SecurityIt is is mandatory. Optional FieldsPresentAbsent. Extension headers are available Subnet Group ManagementUses Internet Group Management Protocol or Multicast Listener Discovery or to MAC resolutionFor Broadcasting Multicast Neighbor dress ConfigurationIt is done manually or via uses stateless address autoconfiguration using the Internet Control Message Protocol or RecordsRecords are in Address (A). Records are in Address (AAAA) HeaderPacket flow for QoS handling is not identified. This includes checksum Label Fields specify packet flow for QoS Fragmentation Packet Fragmentation is allowed from routers when sending to sending to hosts SizeThe minimum packet size is 576 mum packet size 1208 curityIt depends mostly on its own Security protocol called bility and InteroperabilityNetwork topologies are relatively constrained, which restricts mobility and interoperability. IPv6 provides mobility and interoperability capabilities which are embedded in network devicesSNMPSupport dress MaskIt is used for the designated network from the host UsedAddress FeaturesNetwork Address Translation is used, which allows a single NAT address to mask thousands of non-routable Addressing is possible because of the vast address nfiguration the NetworkNetworks are configured either manually or with has autoconfiguration uting Information ProtocolSupports RIP routing protocol. IPv6 does not support RIP routing agmentationIt’s done by forwarding and sending is done only by the rtual Length Subnet Mask SupportSupports pport not nfigurationTo communicate with other systems, a newly installed system must be configured nfiguration is of ClassesFive Different Classes, from A to allows an unlimited number of IP Addresses to be of AddressesMulticast, Broadcast, and UnicastAnycast, Unicast, and MulticastChecksum FieldsHas checksum fields, example: 12. 243. 233. 165Not presentLength of Header Filed2040Number of Header fields128Address MethodIt is a numeric is an alphanumeric of Address32 Bit IP Address128 Bit IP Address
Pros and Cons of Using IPv6
IPv6 addresses have all the technical shortcomings present in IPv4. The difference is that it offers a 128 bit or 16-byte address, making the address pool around 340 trillion trillion trillion (undecillion).
It’s significantly larger than the address size provided by IPv4 since it’s made up of eight groups of characters, which are 16 bits long. The sheer size underlines why networks should adopt IPv6 sooner rather than later. Yet making a move so far has been a tough sell. Network operators find working with IPv4 familiar and are probably using a ‘wait and see’ approach to decide how to handle their IP situation. They might think they have enough IPv4 addresses for the near future. But sticking with IPv4 will get progressively harder to do so.
An example of the advantage of IPv6 over IPv4 is not having to share an IP and getting a dedicated address for your devices. Using IPv4 means a group of computers that want to share a single public IP will need to use a NAT. Then to access one of these computers directly, you will need to set up complex configurations such as port forwarding and firewall alterations. In comparison to IPv6, which has plenty of addresses to go around, IPv6 computers can be accessed publicly without additional configurations, saving resources.
Future of IPv6 Adoption
The future adoption of IPv6 largely depends on the number of ISPs and mobile carriers, along with large enterprises, cloud providers, and data centers willing to migrate, and how they will migrate their data. IPv4 and IPv6 can coexist on parallel networks. So, there are no significant incentives for entities such as ISPs to vigorously pursue IPv6 options instead of IPv4, especially since it costs a considerable amount of time and money to upgrade.
Despite the price tag, the digital world is slowly moving away from the older IPv4 model into the more efficient IPv6. The long-term benefits outlined in this article that IPv6 provides are worth the investment.
Adoption still has a long way to go, but only it allows for new possibilities for network configurations on a massive scale. It’s efficient and innovative, not to forget it reduces dependency on the increasingly challenging and expensive IPv4 market.
Not preparing for the move is short-sighted and risky for networks. Smart businesses are embracing the efficiency, innovation, and flexibility of IPv6 right now. Be ready for exponential Internet growth and next-generation technologies as they come online and enhance your business.
Goran JevticGoran combines his leadership skills and passion for research, writing, and technology as a Technical Writing Team Lead at phoenixNAP. Working with multiple departments and on various projects, he has developed an extraordinary understanding of cloud and virtualization technology trends and best practices.