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Enterprise IPv6 Deployment Guidelines

by Super Contributor ‎10-24-2012 10:17 AM - edited ‎10-24-2012 12:58 PM

I've been tracking a draft that is making its way through the IETF named Enterprise IPv6 Deployment Guidelines.The goal of the article is to help enterprise network admins to deploy IPv6 in their networks.  We have seen many IPv6 transition technologies over the past couple of years, but there is a big problem with most them.  None of them are useful to the standard enterprise network because they were developed to address service provider (subscriber) endpoint problems.  The biggest issue facing enterprise IPv6 deployments is that there is no consistent industry guidance.

Dual-Stack Consensus

Most engineers would agree that dual-stack is the best course of action for the enterprise, but that only addresses the long term play.  Legacy systems, lack of IPv6 enabled endpoints, and different feature support on systems all cause concern with the dual-stack model.  It's getting better, but the market space has not yet come together on features, solutions, and connectivity models that make dual-stack optimal for deployment.  Its going to be a long time, before IPv4 is completely gone and all endpoint have IPv6 reachability options.  That being said, dual-stack should be the ultimate network design goal of your IPv6 deployment plans.

Incremental Phased Approach

In the Enterprise IPv6 Deployment Guidelines draft, 1.3 Reasons for a Phased Approach, describes two approaches to deploying the IPv6 - the External Phase and Internal Phase. This sections also presents some considerations to help you evaluate you unique network characteristics and connectivity models in regards to IPv6.  The focus of this section dictates an incremental phased approach to an IPv6 roll out and helps you evaluate your starting point.


Section 4. External Phase is concerned with how your network appears to the rest of the Internet and other B2B connections. Section 5. Internal Phase discusses internal architectural considerations - like which IGP to use. The internal phase leans heavily toward a dual-stack solution whereas the external phase requires a more IPv6 transition technologies.

Specific Enterprise Network Types

Section 7. Considerations For Specific Enterprises while incomplete, is the section I'm most looking forward too. This is where the rubber meets the road. If enterprises fall into industry verticals, then these network types, which exist within most enterprises architectures, will have some impact for everyone. I have customers that deploy a CDN, Campus, and HPC networks within their global infrastructure. Each type will have its specific IPv6 challenges.


NOTE: I know this draft section covers this as a blanket enterprise network type, but I'm putting my spin on it.

How Does Juniper Fit Into Your Network?

Juniper has been providing IPv6 support in Junos for many years.  Check out Pathfinder (the Feature Explorer) and search for IPv6.  Also, there has been a big internal push to get all the Systems Engineers up to speed on IPv6 including several classes at our annual Technical Summit.


The help each customer with this transition we are focusing on the following transition tools (not an exhaustive list):

  • Statefull NAT64
  • Stateless NAT64 and NAT46
  • 6rd
  • NPTv6

Check Pathfinder for more IPv6 specifics.

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About the Author
  • Jack W. Parks, IV has been working in Information Technology since 1992, and has worked in almost every position known in the realm of IT. Most recently he has focused on Enterprise Routing and Switching, Service Provider Routing, and MPLS and VPNs. Jack holds a B.S. Business Information Systems from John Brown University and has received several industry certifications: CCIE #11685 & JNCIE-M #666. After serving eight years in the United States Air Force, Jack transitioned into the corporate world working in the large Enterprise and ISP market spaces. Jack is currently a Juniper Systems Engineer Tech Lead based in Atlanta, GA. Author of Dayone: EIGRP to OSPF & Dayone: Policies and Firewall filters. Follow me @JackWParks
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