After 15 years conducting training on IPv6 in over 110 countries, I’ve been asked all sorts of questions.
“How do I use my IPv6 addressing space?”
“What prefix size should I provide to customers?”
Although I have answers to these and many other best practice related questions, the one question, which I have not been able to answer to the best of my ability, is “What is the approach of other ISPs?”. So I decided to find out.
I started by circulating a small, four-question survey via several mailing lists (mainly within Europe) in order to get an overview from customers and contacts other than my own. I thought I’d receive a few answers over a week or two but to my surprise, I started to receive dozens of responses within a few hours. My first reaction was “Wow!” then, “what should I do with this information?”.
Surprisingly, it seems nobody has collected this information before, not just in Europe, but in general, and clearly it is something that many people in the industry will be very interested to know. As such, I’ve decided to upgrade my original fact-finding mission and develop a more complete survey to look not just at Europe, but other regions too.
What information am I collecting?
I’m not going to detail here all the survey questions, just to say that is really short. It will take just a couple of minutes to complete questions on the following nine topics:
- ISP name/country/region
- Access technology
- IPv6 is commercial or trial
- IPv6 WAN link details
- IPv6 Prefix assigned to the customer
- IPv4 service details
- Transition technology & provisioning
- IPv6 DNS services
- Contact details and other info
Note: you don’t need to provide personal data such as name/email (which I will never publish anyway). However, it is important to indicate the ISP and country, at a minimum – this is so when I close the survey, I can avoid duplicate data sets and avoid distorting the results and stats. If the responder fills in the contact details, I will only use them in the case of finding important discrepancies in the data they provided, so I can clarify with them to avoid misinterpreting their answers.
Who should do the survey?
Ideally, I am after people working for ISPs doing an IPv6 trial or already offering a commercial IPv6 service.
However, the questionnaire is open to other participants, such as customers of those ISPs. The reason for this is to make sure I get as many contributions as possible; I know that limiting the participation will not help towards that.
In less than a 10 days, I have so far received over 500 responses, but mainly from the RIPE NCC and ARIN regions, with very few from the AFRINIC, APNIC and LACNIC regions. Ideally, I am after at least the same number of responses from these other regions.
By surveying other regions, I’m hoping to be able to learn and compare how everyone is deploying IPv6 and share this information with everyone who is interested in learning more.
What will I do with the results?
I plan to run the survey until the end of June, then review all the data collected, work on deleting duplicate information and prepare different statistics, per region, globally, etc.
After this, I will publish the results and make them publicly available, as well as present them at NOGs, RIR events etc. I am also open to your suggestions on this.
When I publish the results, I will name the ISPs that I have received data from but not identify what data came from which ISP. This means that if you have a trial or a commercial deployment, and contribute to the survey, you will get some free publicity, which is always good to get new customers.
Just a remark: I don’t want to blame anyone, just help to improve the IPv6 deployment. That’s why I will not publish any ISP’s individual deployment details.
Finally, I don’t intend to actually “close” the survey. After every few months, if more inputs have been received I will add them to the previous data set, and update the stats. Hopefully, this will give us a nice picture of the evolution of IPv6.
I hope everyone reading this article now has a good picture of what we are trying to do and how important it is to have as many answers as possible. So please, make sure to participate! Take my survey now.
Jordi Palet Martínez has been working with computers, networking and technology since he was eight years old. For the last 17 years, he has been CEO/CTO at Consulintel, where he has devoted most of his time to IPv6 R&D, standardization, training and consultancy.
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