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Author: Howard C. Berkowitz

Focus: CCIE R&S;

Issue Date: Jun 1, 2023

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IPv4 and IPv6 Addressing and Services

Candidates for higher-level certification sometimes assume that they know IP and related services from their CCNA days. Unfortunately, IP and closely related protocols contain many fairly obscure, but legitimate, IOS features that may be found on these higher-level certification exams.

IPv6 is just entering the marketplace. Much of the functionality of IPv6 exists in the IPv4 world, but perhaps as separate protocols or workarounds. The goal of much of the IPv6 work was to "clean up" these functions. By studying the logic of the cleaned-up version, I have found I've gained considerable insight into the corresponding IPv4 mechanisms.

IPv4, with extensions and supporting protocols such as ARP, ICMP, etc., performs many of the IPv6 functions. The argument for IPv6 is that the various interim hacks of IPv4 evolution are rationalized into one clean protocol implementation. How widely IPv6 will spread remains an open question, however. Some emerging industries, such as third-generation cellular phones, have adopted it. Some countries, such as mainland China, have assumed it will be the main protocol in their national networks. Realistically, however, the market has not yet determined whether there is a real demand for IPv6.

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