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Internet set to enter a new ice-age

A consortium of Internet vendors, research and education networks and ISPs are to meet to discuss the future application of Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6).

The Internet is in danger of becoming frozen in time according to a regional manager of a founding member company of the IPv6 Forum.

The IPv6 Forum is a worldwide consortium of Internet vendors, research and education networks and ISPs. IPv6 is short for ‘Internet Protocol Version 6’ which is considered to be the next generation Internet protocol to replace the current 20-year-old version – Ipv4.

According to Itidal Hasoon, regional manager of Case Technology, some problems have begun to crop up with IPv4. “The biggest of these is the growing shortage of IP addresses which are needed by all the new machines being added to the network,” she said. “Of the world’s 4.2 billion potential addresses on the Internet, there are only a few hundred million remaining to be taken. Also with the Internet doubling its size every nine months or so, the remaining addresses will be rapidly exhausted and the Internet will become frozen in time.”

The IPv6 Forum is focused on improving the market and user awareness of IPv6 and on creating a quality and secure New Generation Internet that allows worldwide equitable access to knowledge and technology. One of its members, Etisalat, is sponsoring an IPv6 Summit in Dubai in February 2001.

The Summit will serve to define the new IPv6 standard in the Middle East and outline its deployment across the world. “Key IPv6 forum speakers will also use the opportunity to present their development work, case studies and ideas on the new generation of Internet Protocol,” said Abdula Hashim, senior manager, business development and sales, EIM. IPv6 addresses a number of problem areas in IPv4 including the limited number of addresses.