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IPv6 Resources from AFRINIC


What is IPv6?

Internet Protocol or simple IP addresses are unique identifiers that enable the Internet.

There are two versions of Internet Protocol addresses, IPv4 and IPv6. IPv6 is the successor to IPv4, the earlier and highly used IP addressing scheme that is limited and currently nearing its capacity to accommodate more devices on the Internet. IPv6 was designed to address such limitation and is known as the "next generation" of IP, allowing for a much larger address space.

The Internet can grow millions of times in terms of connected devices and objects using IPv6. The address limitation has been expanded from a theoretical 4 billion to 340 undecillion (3.4 x 10^38) or 2^32 compared to 2^128. However, a lack of address space isn't the sole reason to switch to IPv6.

IPv6 also brings specific improvements over IPv4 in several aspects, including but not limited to security, mobility, quality of service, network architecture scalability, and routing. As a result, IPv6 is well-suited for scalable and converged networks.

An IPv6 address is represented in hexadecimal format. Separated by colons, each group is up to four hexadecimal. The full address is made of eight groups.

  • Here is an example of an IPv6 address in its full form 2001:0db8:000:0000:0000:0000:0000:1d83
  • Here is the shortened version of the same IPv6 address 2001:0db8::1d83





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