All about Ipv4 and Ipv6

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Internet has been rising ever since it has come to play, and IP is what makes it easy to transfer content over internet here and there. Also in our day to day life we often hear the term IP, IPv4 and IPv6. You may also be asked by your network team or Hosting providers asking you the local IP for few reasons .

Though we have common understanding of IPv4 and its predecessor IPv6,  the more we get clear on it the better. In today’s post we are going to discuss what is IP, Ipv4 and IPv6. Why we need ipv6 when we have ipv4 already and difference between them. Without wasting anymore time lets get to it.

What is an IP?

IP is a like an address which other  devices, networks can use to send the content and back.  A slight back story, International Organization for Standardization (ISO) came up with an approach where they developed some layered model to use in networking. This model would set a common ground for all technology to communicate through network. The network model names were ISO and TCP/IP. IP is one of the layer in those network model which is responsible to transfer content in packets.

About IPv4

The initial IP launched with version IPv4, it is of 32 bit size in 1983. There are 4 octet and each octet incorporates 8 bits, thus it becomes 32 bits. Space wise, IPv4 can provide up to four billion IP allocations, the actual limit being 4,294,967,296. It is nearly 50% population of whole wide world. Though this number is something but we would discuss rest of the story ahead in same post.

Each device is allocated with an IP, similarly in hosting culture a hosting plan is allocated with an IP so that domains can make use of it, to point it to hosting, and then it servers the content that is in the path of the website under it. This topic is deep and wide but we would try to keep it more light at this moment.

About IPv6

IPv6 launched back in 2012 and considered to be a successor of IPv4. There are  16 octet and each octet is of 8 bits which then makes IPv6 a 128 bits in size. IPv6 can provide up to 340 trillion trillion trillion IP addresses and this is something amazing! The huge IP fulfillment of IPv6 makes it different and long term companion in the networking field. IPv6 has yet to be implemented across the hierarchy, and there is assumption that IPv6 might be completely active by year 2035 or further.

IPv6 provides few important benefits than IPv4, which incorporates multicasting, more space, Stateless Address Autoconfiguration etc. The IPv6 is going to replace how we deal with the IPs in todays world. Let us check what are key differences in IPv4 and  IPv6 below.

Difference and Requirement

Differences- The basic difference between IPv4 and 6 is the number of octet, v4 consists of four octet and v6 consists of 16 octet. V4 has 4 classes A,B,C,D which are used according to use whereas V6 has usage according to type like unicast, multicast, and anycast. V4’s security relies on application and V6’s has built in security protocol called IPsec. You may catch full list of differences here.

Requirement- We may wonder why we need to move to IPv6 when we have IPv4 functioning that too since 1983. The primary answer to that is the lack of IP fulfillment. As the population has been increasing our need of technological availability has also hiked in recent  times. To overcome this, Internet Engineering Task Force developed IPv6 and it is ready to be deployed. It might take few decades for full implementation. 

Security is also one of the reason to move towards IPv6, if you review there has been millions of hacks on services, machines, injections and many more to share as examples. IPv6 comes up with IPsec protocol which is again a sum of few protocols offers encryption across the transaction of packets through V6. This ensures the packets are dealt and   exchanged properly which provides more security and can make the current technology more robust.

There is a famous concept called IOT full form goes as Internet of Things and yeah IPv6 is also dedicated to promote IOT. Its concept revolves around objects having their  own information and sensor able to communicate to other objects with same technology. This example could be ported as if you sit to on a chair and fan turns on! All of such devices objects would need more IP allocations and IPv6 is able to fulfil it.


We have reviewed the IPv4 and IPv6 and the way IPv4 has been ruling the tech in networking field, well its time for a change with IPv6. Though we are counting on the full deployment across services and devices but it would be happening eventually in our coming future. This concludes for the topic about IPv4 and 6. What are your thoughts, do let us in the comment section below. If you have any other queries or suggestions for me, I am excited to hear them, please share it here. That is it for today, together we seek the future it is to be.

Picture of Pranav Chaudhari
Pranav Chaudhari
I am a tech enthusiast who began a career in the hosting field. I like to help folks with their tech-related concerns and bring the best of it.

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