Paper Review: IP Next Generation Overview
Reviewer: Mark Meras (mm446)
This paper by Rober Hinden discusses a new protocol, IPng (also known as
IP v6), that is meant to
succeed the IP v4 protocol that is commonly used today. Hinden argues for
the necessity, viability and
easy transition to the protocol as we move away from the PC-centric
Internet to focus on consumer and
mobile devices. Hinden describes the overall protocol and its advantages.
- IP v4 is not well designed for massive-scale global networks that
will arise in the 21st century.
A new protocol is needed. Areas requiring this scale of functionality are
nomadic computing devices
(mostly presented as consumer devices), networked entertainment, and
- The protocol must provide for a smooth transition. Some transition
issues discussed are addressing
(IPng uses 128 bit addresses, compared with 32 for IP v4), and how
special capabilities in IPng will be
- Discusses features of IPng
- Multicast addresses replace broadcast addresses; add "anycast"
- 128 bit address space
- Header format simplification, improved support for options, QoS
capabilities, authentication and
Critique of Contribution
- Hinden provides an overview of IPng, with a lot of details missing.
Most importantly, it's not
quite clear how the transition from IP v4 will occur. Hinden spends a lot
of time describing features
that would make the transition easier, but it's still not obvious how IP
v4 routers will preserve IP v6
- Description of format and features is sufficient otherwise
- Hinden does an excellent job presenting his argument for why IPng is
necessary as well as talking
in general about how it will be adapted. It is only the transition
details that are lacking.
We need a next-generation update to the Internet Protocol to allow for
many more addresses and updated
capabilities to deal with real-time data.
How will the transition take place specifically? Will there be tools to
assist users? Will new IP v6
routing hardware be built? These issues are still left open.