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'I’m not an optimist' – APNIC's Geoff Huston

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APNIC Chief Scientist Geoff Huston – long known as an address space tracker and one of the founders of Australia’s Internet connectivity – has warned Linux Conference Australia 2011 delegates that new address allocations are about to cease.

He has told the conference that IANA [the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority] will stop issuing new addresses in February.

After that point, Huston told the conference, those needing new addresses would either have to start a rapid conversion to IPv6, or would have to rely on increasing their reliance on NAT (network address translation). Multi-level NAT, he believes, will cause “major pain” to users.

While Vint Cerf has somewhat played down talk of an “IP apocalpyse”, Houston reportedly told the conference that “Vint Cerf is a professional optimist. I am not.”

Huston has long warned the Internet community that a time would come when IPv6 implementation became an inevitability rather than an option, and has produced regular projections on IPv4 address exhaustion at his Potaroo.net Website.

Huston is also skeptical that “dual stack” implementations would help much, telling the conference that such transition strategies have a high failure rate. His conclusion? The world needs to undertake the IPv6 transition in the next 200 days.

And if he succeeds in that argument, The Register would suggest an appointment to the IPCC as a climate change evangelist is probably in order. ®

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