3 Types of IPv6 Addresses

We recently talked about Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) addresses, what they are, how they are different from IPv4 addresses and the additional benefits they provide. There are four types of IPv6 addresses. Three of them correspond to how they interact with the network, and one is used specifically for the transition from IPv4 to IPv6. Each network-connected device can typically support more than one IPv6 address for each address type, as well as multiple address types.

IPv4 Mapped: Because the worldwide transition to IPv6 will take many years, IPv6-capable devices simultaneously support IPv4 and IPv6. IPv4-mapped IPv6 addresses are IPv6 addresses that have an IPv4 address encoded within them. This allows for transitional support for older systems like Windows 2000 or XP.

Anycast: A new address type in IPv6, anycast addresses can be shared by multiple devices. However, a message sent to an anycast address will only be accepted by one device–typically the closest or quickest to respond.

Multicast: A multicast address allows a group of devices to receive the same message via the same transmission. In other words, multiple devices can receive a message with a single send operation.

Unicast: Unicast addresses are just what the name implies–single, unique addresses.

It is important to note that IPv4’s broadcast method is not valid in IPv6. Also, each IPv6 address is a part of a scope. A scope defines in what part of the network an address is valid. While some addresses are unique globally, others are only unique within a certain subnetwork.

If your company is thinking of making the transition to IPv6, we can help. Minneapolis-based OAC Technology has been helping small- to medium-sized businesses plan and administer their network environments for 10 years. We can help your technology meet your business needs while maximizing your IT dollars at the same time. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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