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Some Agencies Lag in IPv6 Transition, Task Force Chair Says

Peter Tseronis, IPv6 Task Force chairman; Photo: actgov.org

As the 2012 deadline for switching to a new version of the Internet protocol creeps up on federal agencies, some are simply not making adequate progress, the chairman of the IPv6 task force said last week.

And, while some agencies are taking the necessary steps, too many others are being left in the dust, said Peter Tseronis, chair of the Federal CIO Council’s IPv6 task force at a meeting of the Association for Federal Information Resource Management.

“I don’t really think they get it yet,” he said, according to a report on Government Computer News.

In September, the Office of Management and Budget issued a memo directing agencies to begin making work on the IPv6 transition, setting a deadline of 2012 for public-facing servers and 2014 for agencies’ internal networks.

Tseronis said the deadlines are well known and agencies can’t plead ignorance.

“This is old news. It’s time for execution and deployment,” he said.

Tseronis and the task force have been meeting with agencies since last month to help smooth the transition to the next-generation of Internet protocols, which determine how computers communicate over networks. IP addresses identify users and devices, but the current version, IPv4, which has been in use since the infancy of the Internet, could run out of IP address blocks in a few years.

OMB’s guidelines are meant to stave off any interruptions of service that could result from not properly implementing IPv6. While there are number of short-term fixes short of switching to the latest version, none of them is a satisfactory, long-term solution.

GCN reports the final round of meetings will be completed by Jan. 17, when a fuller picture of IPv6 adoption in federal agencies will emerge.

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