Cisco announced that Free (Iliad Group), a leading broadband solutions operator in France, has deployed the Cisco Carrier-Grade IPv6 Solution.
Free is using Internet Protocol version 6 rapid deployment technology -- also known as 6rd -- allowing more than four million Free residential broadband customers to be a part of one of the world's largest live IPv6-enabled residential Internet service deployments.
The investment lets Free prepare for and mitigate the impending IPv4 address exhaustion, while scaling its network to address the rapid growth of Internet-connected devices. Free customers will benefit from Internet connectivity that can scale to meet the growing number of devices and applications.
Exhaustion of IPv4 addresses is predicted to occur sometime in 2011, according to various sources including potaroo.net, a website that tracks IPv4 address allocation by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority. IPv4 has a finite set of unique addresses, numbering approximately four billion, which is reaching depletion due to the ever-growing number of Internet-connected and smart devices.
The Benefits of a 6rd-based Solution
Deploying 6rd allows service providers to offer large-scale IPv6 to customers via their existing IPv4-access network infrastructure and backend systems. The technology also significantly reduces the lead-time to IPv6 deployment for service providers while protecting their existing network investment.
The Cisco 6rd Border Relay technology is a component of Cisco's Carrier-Grade IPv6 (CGv6) solution that outlines a methodical three-step framework of "Preserve, Prepare and Prosper" for customers looking to transition to IPv6. The framework was launched in October 2009 with the Cisco Carrier Routing System Series, Cisco ASR 1000 Series Aggregation Services Routers and other products supporting this solution. No feature license is needed for supporting 6rd.
The new 6rd capability that is part of Cisco Carrier-Grade IPv6's "Prepare" step enhances the industry's widest selection of IPv6 functionality. Now enabled across virtually the entire routing and switching portfolio, essential capabilities such as dual stack, IPv4-over-IPv6, and IPv6-over-IPv4 tunneling technologies work in conjunction with large-scale Network Address Translation (NAT) capabilities to facilitate the migration to an all-IPv6 network.
"Free is committed to providing the latest innovations for its customers, including full support today for the IP Next-Generation Network, IPv6. We have chosen the Cisco Series Aggregation Services Routers ASR 1000 router for their support of an integrated high-performance IPv6 Rapid Deployment or 6rd technology, which allows us to supply IPv6 to our users in a remarkably simple and cost-efficient manner" said Maxime Lombardini, chief executive officer, Free (Iliad Group, France).
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