As you can see in my predictions, it is pretty clear that the IANA pool of IPv4 addresses will be depleted in next quarter. The figure below illustrates the endgame in details.
But then what? An interesting exercise is to look at the deficit of IPv4 addresses each region will encounter as time goes by. Assume that half of the deficit will be controlled by using multiple layers of NAT and that the other half of the deficit would be IPv6 only hosts. How big would then the IPv6 only Internet be at different future times?
If you rely on the Internet to do business you cannot ignore the growing population of IPv6 only hosts that aren’t able to communicate with you. You must start to deploy IPv6 even if you have plenty of IPv4 addresses available. Here is a likely scenario:
1 year from now – APNIC will run their IPv4 pool dry. After that, APNIC must rely on IPv6 for any network growth.
2 years from now – RIPE will get depleted. By that time there are already a deficit of around 8 x /8 worth of addresses in APNIC. Around 2% of the internet would be IPv6 only.
2.5 years from now – ARIN will run out of IPv4 addresses. The total deficit from RIPE and APNIC will now be around 16 x /8 with. Around 4% of the Internet will be IPv6 only.
4 to 5 years from now – Over 10% of the Internet will be IPv6 only.
Written by Stephan Lagerholm © 2010