Cost of IPv6 for IT operations team

Mikael Abrahamsson swmike at
Thu Apr 2 12:04:12 CEST 2015

On Fri, 27 Mar 2015, Phil Mayers wrote:

> I don't believe the rollout cost was high. We used refresh cycles to 
> upgrade to v6-capable gear, and rolled out slowly to grow our team 
> knowledge. But we don't have detailed cost breakdowns.

This is my experience as well, if someone already has decided to employ 
skilled people and tell them (or gave them fairly free hands) to have IPv6 
enabled on most services in the "next few years", then this will happen 
without very little extra cost.

If one decides that "We need IPv6 on services in the next 6 months" then 
there'll be lots of extra truck rolls and immediate capex and opex if this 
has not been taken into account previously.

It takes 3-5 years to get IPv6 running with minimal extra cost, then it 
can be done as part of normal hardware refresh cycles and slowly 
increasing exposure to IPv6 by staff. So the entities who have not started 
yet and want to get started quickly will have to face increased cost.

I was involved in IPv6-enablement of a fairly large ISP and in 2007-2010 
most of the groundwork was done going full native IPv6 instead of tunnels 
etc, testing all platforms, working bug cases with vendors that had 
software bugs, waiting for the fixes, testing again, then looking at the 
next aspect like IPv6-enabling one of the services with friendly users, 
run that for a while, then turning on more customers, enabling more 
services etc. The earlier one starts, the more can be done over normal 
upgrade cycles of software, you can help the vendor to get everything done 
in a way that'll actually for for you.

Another strategy is to wait until everybody else has done this work and 
hope you were in luck with the things you purchased and that it'll just 
work out of the box without any preparation. This is also a valid 
strategy, as long as not everybody does this :)

Mikael Abrahamsson    email: swmike at

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