Originally posted by Posted by: GoingEtheric
I2 should have a child board, or at least be stickied. If it already has, sorry and move this post to the appropriate placehttp://chronicle.com/free/2002/08/2002081601t.htm
Internet2's Network Adopts New Protocol for Addressing and Packaging Data
By FLORENCE OLSEN
Software designed to give the Internet a new lease on life and guarantee its continued growth is now running on Abilene, the Internet2 backbone network, officials of the Internet2 consortium announced last week. Universities and corporations use Abilene for testing next-generation Internet technologies.
The new software is known as Internet Protocol version 6 -- IPv6 for short. IPv6 is an improved version of the software used for packaging and routing data throughout the Internet. The software in use on the commercial Internet today, called IPv4, dates back to the early 1970s, well before anyone could foresee the Internet's tremendous growth. (A subsequent version, IPv5, was never widely promoted.)
For the time being, Abilene is running the old and new protocols side by side. Networking experts expect the old and new IP protocols will coexist for some time until people stop using IPv4.
The new protocol will fix problems that are invisible to most users, says Jim Bound, network technical director of the Unix systems business unit at Compaq Computer Corporation, who has been a key contributor of specifications for the new protocol. IPv6 is already in use on specialized networks in other parts of the world.
One of the first things IPv6 users will notice about the new protocol is its unfamiliar format for network addresses. Instead of four sets of numbers separated by dots, the new address format -- 205b:008b:cc16:006e:0210:a4ff:fe12:fec4, for instance -- looks quite different.
While Abilene is now one of the largest networks running the new IPv6 protocol, it is not the first. The Department of Energy's ESnet, France's Renater network, and the Netherlands' SURFnet, for example, already run IPv6. Japan, South Korea, and other parts of Asia are also promoting the new protocol.
The most glaring problem IPv6 aims to solve is the threat of running out of public Internet addresses -- unique numbers that can be assigned to computers on the Internet.
About four billion addresses are available under the IPv4 standard. That number, networking officials say, is far less than the number needed for everyone on earth -- 6.1 billion people -- to have even one distinct network address. Most network experts foresee a future in which each person will use many different sensors and handheld computers, each attached to the Internet and each with its own network address.
Were mobile computing, for example, to become as popular as cell-phone use, Mr. Bound says, there would not be enough IPv4 addresses for users to roam from one city to the next.
Under the IPv6 standard, the number of available Internet addresses is a mind-boggling 340 trillion, trillion, trillion, or 3.4(1038). "IPv6 is a better protocol," says Mr. Bound. "It will run better. It will do more things. It's the future."
Besides having a nearly unlimited number of possible addresses, IPv6 does a more efficient job of routing packages of data throughout the Internet, network officials say. And the new protocol promises other technical benefits, such as improved end-to-end network security and easier multicasting. The latter is a technique for broadcasting a video stream simultaneously, for example, to 100 or more different laboratories, conference rooms, or desktop computers.
IPv4's development was largely the work of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and American universities. The new protocol, however, was developed by an international community of network engineers and software designers known as the Internet Engineering Task Force. One consequence is that the IPv6 protocol is more widely used today in Europe and Asia than in the United States, says Dale Finkelson, a network engineer at the University of Nebraska who is co-chairman of the Internet2 IPv6 Working Group.
The new protocol is running on all of the Cisco Systems 1200 series routers on the existing Abilene backbone, Internet2 officials say, and it will be on all of the new Juniper Networks routers to be installed when Internet2 upgrades the Abilene network during the next year.
IPv6 will not increase the price of routers or other network equipment, says Mr. Bound, although he adds that some institutions may need to upgrade older hardware or operating systems to take advantage of the new protocol.
Officials of Internet2 and the IPv6 Forum, a consortium formed to promote the new protocol, say they have begun conducting training workshops for campus-network engineers. But it could be three to five years before many research universities switch to IPv6 for much of their work, says Michael H. Lambert, who is a network engineer at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center and co-chairman of the Internet2 IPv6 Working Group. "I imagine it's one of these things that will be played with first in the dorms," he says, "and finally makes it to the faculty desks."
Internet2 Gurus Deploy
New Protocol; VoIPv6 is Born
If the tunnel is Internet2, then the light at the end of the tunnel is IPv6. New land speed record proves that native IPv6 service stands ready to meet current and emerging needs of high performance networking.
by Jim Thompson
[October 4, 2002]
When the brain trust behind the Internet2 program speaks, anybody who sees the Internet as part of their future, better listen. These are the people who are laying the groundwork for tomorrow's Internet today—right now, they're talking about Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6). The group's latest innovations include deploying IPv6 across the Abilene backbone network and developing what may become the killer app for the next generation protocol—Voice over IPv6 (VoIPv6).
Led by more than 200 U.S. universities, working with industry and government, Internet2 engineers are developing and deploying advanced network applications and technologies that will be the foundation of the public data highway of tomorrow. It was many of these same people who fostered the Internet as we know it today from its infancy. If anyone knows what's hot for the future, it's these people. According to members of the Internet2 group, IPv6 is not only the wave of the future—it's the only way for new networks to fly.
The deployment of IPv6 over the nationwide Abilene backbone networks makes high-performance IPv6 service available to Internet2 member institutions and thousands of other research and education institutions across the country that have access to Abilene. Abilene's native IPv6 service also complements existing IPv6 deployment over other research and education networks around the world, such as the Energy Sciences Network in the U.S., knows as Esnet, Renater in France, and SURFnet in the Netherlands.
"We believe the deployment of IPv6 could be critical to sustaining the scalable growth and innovation that has distinguished the Internet's development over the past 30 years," said Steve Corbató, director of backbone network initiatives for Internet2.
Running on Cisco System's premier Internet router, the 12000 series, the Abilene experiment marks the first large scale deployment of native IPv6 in the U.S.
IPv6 provides a number of significant improvements over IPv4, including 128-bit long Internet addresses instead of the 32-bit addresses of IPv4 which vastly increases the number of available addresses and paves the way for a large range of new applications.
It also opens the door to higher speeds, as evidenced by a new Internet2 Land Speed Record (I2-LSR) set this month using IPv6 by the University of Oregon, the Oregon Gigapop and NYSERNet working with the staff of Abilene.
Land speed record
In the open competition, 3.47 gigabytes of information was transferred over 3,000 miles (4,810 km) of network from Eugene, Oregon to Syracuse, New York in one hour. This established a new I2-LSR IPv6 category record of 39.81 terabit meters per second.
"There's no question that routine delivery of real-world production information services of this sort is the best tangible proof that native IPv6 service stands ready to meet the current and emerging needs of the higher education high performance networking community," noted Joanne Hugi, associate vice president, Information Services at the University of Oregon.
Tim Lance, president of NYSERNet added that the IPv6 deployment across the Abilene backbone network is "approaching the same performance as the IPv4 network" and establishes a transcontinental network supporting IPv4 and IPv6 over the same infrastructure.
"[The Internet2 Land Speed Record] provides an important demonstration of IPv6's readiness to support day-to-day network applications," said Rich Carlson, network research scientist at Argonne National Laboratory, and chair of the I2-LSR judging panel.
IPv6 speaks up
The ultimate development and widespread deployment of IPv6 was given a further push with the announcement of support for the next generation protocol in Java2, standard edition 1.4.1 from Sun Microsystems, Inc. This addition paved the way for the development of a VoIPv6 application by the Swiss company, Telscom.
Based on Session Initiated Protocol (SIP) and called 6VOICE, the application uses IPv6 in a native mode which means it's the only transmission protocol and not embedded or tunneled through the present Internet. "With the successful deployment of VoIPv6 application, we are seeing the end of the dark tunnel and finding the bright light and business models of next generation networks based on IPv6 protocol," said Telscom managing director, Dr. Sathya Rao.
A successful test of the voice application was conducted using Linux systems for both fixed and Mobile IPv6 networks. Documentation and the application software is available to research groups from Telscom free of charge. If you are interested in the 6VOICE project, you should contact Dr. Rao directly.
For the time being, the Abilene network is running the old and new protocols side by side. Networking experts expect the old and new IP protocols will coexist for some time until people stop using IPv4 and migrate entirely to IPv6. Nobody knows for certain when this day will come—but Internet2 will be ready for it.