What should data center operators think about with regard to IPv6? One of the Internet Drafts in the V6OPS working group within the IETF aims to address this issue. The latest version was just released two weeks ago on February 3, 2014, and can be found at:
As the abstract notes:
This document is intended to provide operational guidelines for datacenter operators planning to deploy IPv6 in their infrastructures. It aims to offer a reference framework for evaluating different products and architectures, and therefore it is also addressed to manufacturers and solution providers, so they can use it to gauge their solutions. We believe this will translate in a smoother and faster IPv6 transition for datacenters of these infrastuctures.
The document focuses on the DC infrastructure itself, its operation, and the aspects related to DC interconnection through IPv6. It does not consider the particular mechanisms for making Internet services provided by applications hosted in the DC available through IPv6 beyond the specific aspects related to how their deployment on the Data Center (DC) infrastructure.
Apart from facilitating the transition to IPv6, the mechanisms outlined here are intended to make this transition as transparent as possible (if not completely transparent) to applications and services running on the DC infrastructure, as well as to take advantage of IPv6 features to simplify DC operations, internally and across the Internet.
The document then goes on to look at the various stages of a transition to IPv6 and explores various methods by which the transition can occur. It also addresses operational considerations such as IPv6 address planning, monitoring and logging, and management systems. Like other similar documents, it also includes many links for data center operators seeking to learn more.
If you operate a data center, you may find this document quite helpful!
P.S. I’ll note that the authors are definitely looking for feedback and so if you have suggestions based on your own experience with IPv6 in your data center, please do contact them – their email addresses are at the end of the document.