IPv4 vs IPv6

By | April 25, 2020
IPv4 vs IPv6

Internet Protocol uses to set the communication between the client and the internet by using some protocols or rules. IP delivers data packets from the source to the destination using the IP address, and for each device with internet access has a unique IP address, that’s how the internet estimates the right destination system amongst millions of systems. There are two basic Internet Protocols Versions (IPV4 and IPV6) we use worldwide to represent the IP address, here in this article we have provided a brief introduction of both the IP versions and a head to head comparison.

What is IPv4?

With the introduction of the internet, IPv4 was the first IP version introduced and deployed for the production of the ARPANET in 1983. If we compare it with its successor version IPv6, yet more devices use IPv4. It uses a 32-bit(4 bytes) addressing mode this means it can allocate 4 billion unique addresses. 4 billion could sound too much but with rapid raise in technology now every device can access the internet so we need to give each device an IP address so to solve this problem a new version of IP has been introduced and named as IPv6.


What is IPv6?

It was developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force(IETF) in 1994 and on 14th July 2017 it ratified as a Draft Standard for the IETF. It uses a 128-bit address which means it can allocate approx. 3.4×1038 unique addresses. One of the major limitations of both the version is they cannot be interoperable so we cannot perform direct communication between them.

IPv4 vs IPv6: Head to Head Comparison

Here in this table, you will get a complete comparison/difference between IPv4 and IPv6.

IPv4 IPv6
Address size IPv4 uses 32-bit address IPv6 uses 128-bit address
Addressing representation It represents the address in numeric form, separated with a dot(.) It uses alphanumeric to represent the address and separate them with colon(:)
Header fields It has 12 header fields It uses 8 header fields (version, Traffic class, flow label, payload length, next header, hop limit, source address, destination address)
Header Field Length IPv4 header field length is 20 IPv6 header field length is 40
Checksum IP4 has checksum fields It does not require checksum field
Address type IPv4 supports Unicast, broadcast, and multicast. IPv6 supports Unicast, multicast, and anycast
Virtual Length Subnet Mask IPv4 supports VLSM It does not support VLSM
Fragmentation Here sender and forwarding routes perform the fragmentation Here, only the sender performs the fragmentation.
Network Configuration; In IPv4 we use DHCP to configure the network manually. Here network configured automatically.
Security IPv4 security can be compromised. It provides a better option for security concerns.
Device compatibility. Compatible for all devices, but not often used in the mobile device. It is also compatible with all devices, including mobile devices.
MAC address Mapping To map MAC address it uses Address Resolution Protocol(ARP) To map MAC address it uses Neighbour Discovery Protocol(NDP)
Optional Fields It has many option fields It does not provide any option field
Encryption In IPv4 we do not have an encryption facility IPv6 Provide encryption facility, because of high security.
Address Generate It can generate approx. 4.3 billion unique addresses It can generate approx. 3.4×1038 Unique address
Example Ac90::a9c4:ac5e:4ac5:eee8%5


Yet only 20 to 22% of web has adopted IPv6 and rest use the old version which is IPv4 because IPv6 is expensive for old enterprises to move from one version to another but with time all are shifting toward IPv6 and there is no doubt that one day the concept of IPv4 will vanquish.

In 1998 when IPv6 was introduced and since then there is no such rapid adoption of IPv6 because IPv4 is good enough to serve the basic purpose and ones who are adopting IPv6 are the strong enterprises that can hold the expense of it.

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