Although the average web user won’t notice a difference, Wednesday marks a major milestone in the history of the Internet. Several major ISPs and tech companies have officially enabled IPv6 addresses for their products and services, including AT&T, Google, Facebook, Cisco, Comcast and Yahoo. For the uninitiated, IPv6 is a next-generation Internet layer protocol that was designed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to create a virtually limitless number of new IP addresses once the world had run out of addresses on the most widely-used Internet layer protocol, IPv4. While IPv4 has a fixed limit of around 4 billion IP addresses, IPv6 has exponentially more, on the magnitude of around 340 billion billion billion billion (3.4×1038). At any rate, the Internet Society is hosting a virtual IPv6 launch party on Wednesday, complete with video tributes to the new protocol from tech bigwigs such as Cisco CEO John Chambers.
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