Thursday, May 31, 2012

North American IPv6 Summit - Advanced IPv6 design and deployment items for enterprise networks that are Microsoft technology focused

Back on April 9 through the 11th was the North American IPv6 Summit in Denver, CO. I presented on "Advanced IPv6 design and deployment items for enterprise networks that are Microsoft technology focused" and my presentation is now posted up on the site.

In addition to presenting I also had the opportunity to build out the Cisco wireless network that was used for the conference. It was an interesting experience due to the fact that the wireless was dual stacked and we made SSID's available for each of the carriers brought in for the conference. To top it off, we also made IPv6 only SSID's for each of the carriers allowing conference attendees the chance to test out what IPv6 only connectivity was like. Of course the other SSID's were dual stacked.

The Cisco Wireless LAN Controller required the newest software release of 7.2.103 in order to properly support IPv6. After a few early bumps (and reboots) everything worked as expected and we had several hundred folks up and running on wireless for the duration of the conference. Some interesting IPv6 deployment caveats came out from doing this work. First, due to older Mac OSX and Linux clients not having a DHCP client in the OS it meant that we ended up having to run both DHCPv6 and SLAAC on the same network. Effectively were had to set the A, M and O flags all at the same time. This meant that Windows 7 client machines ended up with three global unicast IPv6 addresses and their link local addresses. One from DHCPv6, one from a the privacy address that is dynamically built (instead of EUI-64) and a temporary address built for the random privacy address to do outbound sessions. Mac OSX and Linux clients built out SLAAC EUI-64 addresses as expected but were unable to obtain DNS information unless they ran a DHCPv6 client as we did not have RFC 6106 set up at all.

Overall, it was functional, but far from perfect. Given we had less then 8 hours to turn the whole thing up I was not disappointed because we had a working network built by a diverse group of engineers who all came together in one day. I would consider that a pretty impressive feat.
- Ed

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