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Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6): Capabilities, Operational Concepts, and the Transition from IPv4

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Technical rept.

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The research study, Internet Protocol Version 6 IPv6 Capabilities, Operational Concepts, and the Transition from IPv4, was conducted at the United States Naval Academy USNA with the aim of developing, employing and testing an IPv6 network while learning about many important compatibility and operational issues an organization would encounter while migrating to this new protocol. Specifically, the study entailed participation in the primary phase of the Defense Information Systems Agencys DISAs IPv6 Pilot Network Project. This primary phase required setting up a fully functional IPv6 network at USNA that, in turn, connected to an IPv6 network at the United States Military Academy USMA via an IPv4IPv6 Virtual Private Network tunnel. Although mandated by the Office of Management and Budget OMB to complete the critical conversion of IPv4 to IPv6 by 2008, the Department of Defense DOD, recognizing the inherent security considerations, operational restrictions and resultant delays in conducting such a conversion, has sponsored the multi-phase US Service Academy IPv6 Pilot Network Project. By partaking in the pilot project, this research study facilitated the DOD-wide protocol conversion by making use of an IPv6 connection between USMA and USNA which afforded a secure testing and validation environment. In addition to the inter-academy IPv6 network connection mandated by the Pilot Network Project, the scope of this research study was threefold 1 to review and validate the prior research study conducted by the MIDN Christopher B. Landis, USN, 2 to test and develop convergence techniques for the coexistence of IPv4IPv6, and 3 to discover and analyze the ramifications that the transition to IPv6 would have on legacy systems. It is noteworthy that during the course of the study, our findings revealed a disagreement with a finding reached in the previous Landis study as might be expected when performing research on a new and largely unexplored topic.

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  • Computer Systems Management and Standards

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