Based on how the internet is currently configured, the last amount of internet space was allocated today.
Space on the internet is divided up into addresses- much like space on Earth. Those addresses currently consist of 4 numbers and each number can be anything from 0-255. This method of dividing internet space into 4-part addresses is known as Internet Protocol version 4 or IPv4. An example of an IPv4 address is:
Using the IPv4 system the internet can have about 4 billion different addresses. Until recently, it was not much of concern that the number of internet addresses may eventually run out. Well-
The last block of internet addresses was allocated today.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re already being used, but they will be shortly.
Because of this, the internet as a whole will have to move to the next version of Internet Protocol- Internet Protocol version 6 or IPv6. IPv6 is similar to IPv4 except that it consists of 6 numbers ranging from 0-255 instead of only 4. An example of an IPv6 address is:
Using this address system the internet can handle more than enough addresses for every atom on the planet to have its own address!
The everyday internet user might not notice any immediate effects but, instead, subtle changes or glitches when surfing the web. Businesses, on the other hand, will have to prepare for some software changes and possibly some hardware changes depending on how their infrastructure is designed.
As everything on the internet is migrated to IPv6 instead of IPv4, users may experience trouble when accessing certain websites that may not be compatible with the version of Internet Protocol that they are using. These issues will occur because it is very difficult two use two address systems at the same time. One may relate this situation to the debate between using Celsius or Fahrenheit. There have been many scientific blunders because of the confusion between the two.
Once everyone and every website has been transferred to IPv6, the issues that users have experienced due to the existence of two different address schemas should subside. Until then be prepared for some Internet oddities!!
I would like to hear what some of my readers think so please leave comments / concerns / rants- whatever you want!
If you’re looking for more information I found this article very interesting.