THE internet is full — and will run out of addresses this September, experts are warning.
The global authority responsible for new addresses will hand out the last remaining batches this month.
Today in Miami the Internet Address and Naming Agency is expected to say that, at the current rate of use, old-style addresses will be used up by September.
The 1996-era address system, known as IPv4, can hold about 4.3billion addresses assigned to computers and websites. But it has virtually run out as smart-phones, laptops, tablets and Macbooks go online.
However, progress adopting the new IPv6 system, which can hold 340 trillion addresses, is slow and the two systems are not directly compatible. Computers using older software such as Windows XP and many household broadband modems cannot read IPv6. That means that when IPv4 addresses run out, websites with new‑style addresses may not be accessible to many users.
It could even mean users cannot get online unless other users get offline first. The 6UK group, an initiative set up to encourage businesses to convert to new addressing, has said new broadband customers will have to be turned away unless action is taken. Adrian Kennard from UK internet service provider Andrews & Arnold told Metro all ISPs will be affected.
`This marks a key milestone where we are being made aware of the issues. Unless ISPs have got plans now to introduce IPv6 they are going to hit a brick wall. `Ultimately, to be on the internet you’ll need new-style addresses. The growth of the internet will suffer.’
Only a small minority of businesses and ISPs, and a few countries such as China, have made any progress implementing IPv6.
Source : Fred Attewell – Metro Newspaper 03/02/2011