Changing to a Proactive, Managed, and Strategic Approach to IPv6 Deployment

Changing to a Proactive, Managed, and Strategic Approach to IPv6 Deployment

Announcing Merit’s IPv6 Readiness Program Report

Merit Network Inc. is a non-profit, member-owned organization that runs a regional Research & Education (REN) network for the state of Michigan. Twelve public universities serve as Merit’s governing members. Merit is their internet service provider, and as part of that service provides them with IP addresses.

In October 2017, Merit assessed their IPv4 address usage and determined that several of the governing members might run out of IPv4 addresses in five years if they continued at their current growth rate. Merit presented these results to its governing board members and recommended a program to help them begin or further IPv6 deployment on their campus networks. The board agreed with the recommendation and approved a fully funded IPv6 Readiness Program.

The IPv6 Readiness Program ran from January 2018 to December 2019. Realizing the risks and challenges that IPv6 deployment presents, Merit designed the program to train staff members in IPv6 technology, assist in creating IPv6 deployment plans, encourage the start or advancement of IPv6 deployment, and build an IPv6 support community. It was designed to change a reactive approach to solving IPv4/IPv6 problems to a proactive, managed, and strategic IPv6 deployment program. The program’s strategy included:

  • Engaging IT leadership
  • Engaging IPv6 experts as advisers and trainers
  • Educating IT staff who represented a wide of variety of functional and reporting responsibilities
  • Providing various communication channels to promote informal discussions
  • Holding meetings and workshops
  • Providing conference presentations and Q&A sessions with IPv6 experts
  • Guiding the process with documents and templates

What’s in the Report?

Merit has recently released a report on the program. For a copy of the report, please visit the IPv6 Readiness Program website.

An excerpt from Merit’s IPv6 Readiness Program Report

This report, aimed at executive-level higher education administrators as well as network engineers, was produced with guidance from those experts and delivers major points, considerations, and insights from the program, including:

  • How to avoid rushing into a costly deployment
  • The rapidly rising prices for IPv4 addresses on the open market
  • How IPv6 supports a stronger network
  • The security, performance, cost, and reputational risks — and opportunity costs — of not deploying IPv6
  • History, trends, and data on IPv6 adoption, performance, and outlook
  • Why the higher education sector has been slow to take up IPv6
  • Valuable tips for planning and starting an IPv6 deployment
  • Advice from leading experts in the field
  • Important differences between IPv4 and IPv6 address acquisition and planning

Post written by:

Lola Killey
Infrastructure and Research Support Analyst, Merit Network

https://www.merit.edu/
Lola Killey was the program manager for the IPv6 Readiness Program at Merit. She is currently working as a support analyst assisting in various projects such as infrastructure development, outside plant operations, contract administration, research, and process support. Lola has a BS in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University and an MS in Electrical Engineering Systems from the University of Michigan.

Any views, positions, statements or opinions of a guest blog post are those of the author alone and do not represent those of ARIN. ARIN does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness or validity of any claims or statements, nor shall ARIN be liable for any representations, omissions or errors contained in a guest blog post.

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