Sprint promises IPv6 in 2008

sprint logoTony D’Agata, vice president of federal sales for Sprint told InternetNews.com that Sprint is ramping up some specific IPv6 offerings that are expected to be ready in the second quarter of 2008.

“We are IPv6 enabling our network and actively pursing putting IPv6 on our peerless IP network,” D’Agata said. “We also have plans to implement IPv6 on other assets.”

In terms of helping government and commercial enterprise customers with migration issues from IPv4 to IPv6, the plan is for Sprint to run a dual stack using both versions of IP.

“For those government agencies that need to be IPv6 enabled, it’s just a matter of moving their ports over to the IPv6 environment,” D’Agata said. “Those that don’t can stay with IPv4.”

The US Government Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has mandate that federal agencies enable IPv6 by June of 2008.

“The OMB mandate is to be IPv6 enabled,” D’Agata argued. “It is not yet clear whether or not agencies will actually choose to activate services on IPv6. They have so many other initiatives on their plate and this is just one of them. Time will tell if they will have active IPv6 networks and will be actually transporting traffic over their networks.”

The basic reason why there is a need for IPv6 in the first place is the simple fact that the IPv4 address space is near exhaustion. IPv6 offers significantly more address space, which is something that government wants. D’Agata noted that among the agencies that are likely to deploy IPv6 is the Department of Defense (DoD), which wants to create IP addresses on major pieces of equipment in the battle space.

To date there have been a number of different reasons why IPv6 has not been implemented in the government.

“There have been some contractual delays that precluded the implementation and not all agencies have yet migrated to an IP environment,” D’Agata said. “Quite a few are in legacy technologies like ATM or Frame Relay so they have to go to go through a process of re-architecting their network environment.”

[source: Internet Week]

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