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Cerf Warns Over Address Space Squeeze

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Google's chief internet evangelist Vint Cerf

Google's Vint Cerf warns that online growth could start grinding to a halt within six months.

Credit: Financial Times

Google chief Internet evangelist Vint Cerf is raising the alarm about the effect the impending depletion of Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4) addresses will have on the Internet. IPv4 addresses are expected to be gone by next spring, and once that happens it will be difficult to add new users or devices to the Internet, Cerf says.

In addition, there are compatibility problems between IPv4 and the Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6), which is designed to take its place. That means that there could be connection problems between markets where Internet usage is widespread and growing markets where more new connections will be needed.

Cerf is lobbying White House officials to accelerate the U.S. implementation of IPv6. Only a small number of business Web sites, Internet service providers, and routing equipment currently use IPv6, despite the fact that the technical foundations for the protocol have been available for several years. "It's going to be a big problem," Cerf says. "This is the most tumultuous time for the Internet since we launched the thing."

From Financial Times
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