One of my biggest annoyances for a while has been the lack of interest in IPv6 in the UK. There just isn’t a thirst for it. I’m pretty convinced it’s down to lack of sales support by out coin operated fraternity of technology touting army of salesmen (and women). Justifications like “IPv4 is running out” and “IPv6 when wielded correctly gives us huge growth potential” just isn’t enough to convince anyone that it’s here and is ready for adoption in enterprises nationally. The commoditisation of last mile circuits and consumer grade connectivity has also driven down profit and therefore as these businesses run with tightly controlled finances, the ability to invest in additional functionality with no perceivable gain is frowned upon somewhat. So, a quote that I thumbed in to Twitter was “Would you expect sparkling vitamin water to come out of the same taps as your current still cold feed? Who would pay £1 a month more?”. The answer to this somewhat pointless frustrated question is probably not of any value to anyone barring technologists who get it. Of course you wouldn’t get it out of the same tap! Whilst it would be delivered from the same set of infrastructure technologies, some special “demixer” tap would be required to deliver the two substances at the end point. You then have the choice of still, sparkling vitamin, or a mix of the two! Not a great analogy but I needed something commodity to compare it against.
Would I pay £1 a month extra for life? Absolutely not. I would expect to pay it for a period of time enough for said provider to recuperate the outlay of implementing it. Why would I do this? We’re all to blame for ultra low costs and £2 a month awful DSL delivery. We expect it to work and as cheap as possible. No finger pointing at the providers here as they drop their pants and get spanked by the industry and non-appreciative consumers who want more for less. Of course, there’s nothing stopping empowered service providers from investing and lifting themselves with their own petard. I would love to see service providers touting “We haz IPv6!” instead of “super fast fibre optic broadband” which is laughable considering it legally stands (who remembers the court cases?) as providers use fibre at some point in the network. Anyway, sensing this is more of a rant than useful, I’ll move on.
Speaking as a grown up and not a disgruntled consumer customer, I am a huge fan of IPv6 and have been for years. I’m also very aware of the security implications of terrible design and implementation approaches. During NFD8, I was incredibly lucky to have met Ed Horley in San Jose who is the author of “Practical IPv6 for Windows Administrators”. More about Ed can be found here. I had a good whinge at poor old Ed, who first of all empathised, got fired up then set me straight on approaches to generating desire to adopt the much unloved IPv6. Adopt IPv6, gain connectivity ready for adoption when IPv4 really does become scarce and close your security gaps in one mighty whack. Convinced?
Show your support by going to this event in Scotland on the 20th of November. Spread some IPv6 love and pick up the challenge with your service provider, employer, father, vicar or whoever.
More interesting is the first UK IPv6 Council meeting on the 16th of October. This meeting will cover the current status and much more. Thanks to Matt Dinham (@mattdinham) for the heads up.
[3rd October 2014 – Important to track progress 🙂 ]
As always, feel free to leave comments, troll and shoot me down. Gathering opinions is great as it means this subject gets the love it deserves.