IPv6 Internet Protocol Version 6
IPng or IPv6 is the latest version of internet protocols. This protocol was reviewed by the IETF standards committee and is set to replace the current internet protocol of IPv4. The official name of this protocol is IPv6 which stands for Internet Protocol version 6, but it is often called IPng which stands for Internet Protocol Next Generation.
This internet protocol is slowly replacing the IPv4 or Internet Protocol Version 4. This new protocol is an upgrade from IPv4 and will for a long time coexist with the older protocol. IPv6 has been designed to allow the internet to continue growing for many years in terms of the number of connected hosts and the total amount of data which is being transmitted. This was a problem with IPv4 as it was not designed for a growing internet IPV6.
This Internet Protocol was created for packet-switching internetworks which specify datagrams or packet formats and the addressing system used across multiple IP networks. The new protocol has expanded the routing and addressing capabilities of its predecessor in a number of ways including:
- The increase of address size from 32 bits to 128 bits
- Providing more levels of addressing hierarchy
- Supporting a greater number of addressable nodes
- Supporting simplified header formats
- Offering simple auto-configuration of addresses
One of the major factors in the creation of the new protocol was to increase the IP address pool. The primary benefit of IPv6 is that it replaced the 32-bit IPv4 addresses with 128-bit addresses which are much longer. The old system offered a total address pool of 2^32 addresses while the new system offers 2^128 addresses.
There are also a number of technical benefits to the new Internet Protocol including simplified headers in 7 fields compared to 13 fields in IPv4. There is also an improved security with the introduction of 2 extension headers which are the authentication header and the encapsulating security header.
The development of the guidelines for the operation of shared IPv4 and IPv6 internet was completed by the IPv6 Operations Working Group and the IETF Standards committee. This group has also provided operational guidance on how IPv6 should be deployed on networks working on IPv4 only.