What Happens If You Are IPv4 Only?

By Jennifer Bly - Public Affairs Specialist, ARIN

There’s a lot of talk about the “impending doom” of being IPv4 only (i.e. running your public facing services such as your website and email only over IPv4) once IPv6 becomes the norm, but what does that really mean?

We’ve broken it down in this infographic (which also appears in Light Reading) – essentially your web properties will be unreachable to those individuals who are IPv6-only, which holds several risks for your business.

In today’s digital age, no one wants to wait more than a second or two for a website to load. Without IPv6, videos, images and other web-based content may load at slower speeds or not at all, and these customers may abandon the underperforming website altogether.

And then there’s the matter of web analytics and measurement. Businesses are increasingly turning to Google Analytics and other measurement tools to better understand who visits their website and why, because ultimately this feeds into your company’s revenue.

That said, transition technologies that tunnel IPv6 traffic to IPv4 can make it look like traffic is coming from the locations of the tunnels rather than the actual location of the customer. This means analytics derived from IPv4-only websites in today’s both IPv4 and IPv6 Internet landscape will be unreliable and lead to incorrect measurements and reporting.

Our infographic takes you through these steps, but there are several other implications for ignoring IPv6 entirely. Tell us what you think in the comments section below.



Jennifer Bly

Public Affairs Specialist, ARIN