From February 14 - 18, 2011, the UNH-IOL hosted an IPv6 Interoperability Test Event, which brought together cable and customer premises equipment (CPE) vendors to prepare for the delivery of reliable, uninterrupted Internet service to new and existing customers using IPv6, and enable end-user connectivity by ensuring IPv6 readiness in home networking equipment. While IPv6 is the solution for keeping current customers connected and adding new customers to the network as the supply of remaining allocated IPv4 addresses reach exhaustion, it is not widely deployed in broadband networks at this time. During the test event, cable suppliers found solutions to interoperability challenges that may be experienced in the transition thereby cost-effectively speeding broadband deployments.
An additional goal of the recent IPv6 Interoperability Test Event was to make sure that end users will be able to connect to the deployed IPv6-based services, since many home networking and consumer edge (CE) devices are not currently equipped to support IPv6. For this IPv6 Interoperability Test Event, the UNH-IOL created a new test plan, based on the Internet Engineering Task Force's (IETF) draft for CPE router devices. During the test event, CPE vendors had an early opportunity to test their CE devices against the new test plan before the IETF draft becomes final, expediting their products time to market.
In January of 2010, the UNH-IOL became accredited as a testing lab for the USGv6 Test Program, allowing organizations planning to sell IPv6 products to the federal government and seeking compliance with the USGv6 Profile to ensure the capabilities of their products match federal acquisition requirements. The UNH-IOL's accreditation provides a high-level of confidence to member companies that the IPv6 products they test at the UNH-IOL will meet the compliance standards set forth in the USGv6 Profile. Since the accreditation, all products which have successfully completed IPv6 conformance and interoperability testing at the lab in accordance with the USGv6 Test Program have been added to the growing list of approved USGv6 test devices. The UNH-IOL has also enhanced the USGv6 Test Program by developing testing services for Network Protection Devices (NPD), such as firewalls, intrusion prevention systems and intrusion detection systems. Additionally, the UNH-IOL has expanded the UNH-IOL IPv6 team to support a growing interest in interoperability testing for IPv6 routing.
As part of the lab's ongoing industry involvement, UNH-IOL executives have offered their perspectives based on first-hand experience working with IPv6 at various technology forums. Last week, Timothy Winters, senior manager for the UNH-IOL, joined industry and government leaders for the executive roundtable, "Making a Successful Transition to IPv6," presented by Federal Computer Week and Cisco, to discuss steps that must be taken to prepare for the transition and to share lessons learned. Mr. Winters also spoke about the UNH-IOL's IPv6 Ready Logo Program at the IPv6 Consumer Electronics Summit, which was hosted by CableLabs, the cable industry's research and development consortium, and held in San Jose, CA. In addition, Erica Johnson, director of the UNH-IOL, discussed the importance of IPv6 interoperability testing at the 2010 Rocky Mountain IPv6 Summit, held in Denver, CO, in May of 2010.
The UNH-IOL has been testing IPv6 since 1996 and remains an industry leader. From 2003 until 2010, the UNH-IOL collaborated with the North American IPv6 Task Force (NAv6TF), Department of Defense (DoD), equipment vendors and government agencies to host the Moonv6 test events, which spearheaded IPv6 testing worldwide. Highly involved in the IPv6 Ready Logo Program, as the North American regional officer and a technical contributor, the UNH-IOL currently offers accredited testing for the IPv6 Ready Logo Program.
The UNH-IOL collaborative testing model distributes the cost of performing trusted, independent testing and validation through an annual membership. The fee for participation in the IPv6 Consortium is $25K. More information on becoming a member of the IPv6 Consortium at the UNH-IOL can be found at http://www.iol.unh.edu/services/testing/ipv6/.
About the UNH-IOL
Founded in 1988, the UNH-IOL provides independent, broad-based interoperability and standards conformance testing for data, telecommunications and storage networking products and technologies. Combining extensive staff experience, standards bodies participation and a 32,000+ square foot facility, the UNH-IOL helps companies efficiently and cost effectively deliver products to the market. For more information, visit http://www.iol.unh.edu/.
UNH-IOL Communications Coordinator
Jason Walls, +1-603-862-5051
Subudhi Consulting Group, Inc. for UNH-IOL
Christine Carlson, +1-804-612-5394