REDMOND, Wash., March 15, 2000 — Microsoft Corp. today announced it will make the technical preview of Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) available for free* download on the Microsoft Software Developers Network (MSDN TM ) Web site, for use by developers for Windows® 2000. The preview will help developers prepare their applications for smooth, successful deployments as an industrywide conversion to IPv6 nears. The code and related information will be posted and available for download on March 20, 2000.
Computers need an address on the Internet to communicate. As a result of Internet growth, early management of IPv4 deployment, and the evolving policies for address allocation, there is a shortage of addresses. IPv6 is important to the industry because it helps solve the issue of limited address capability in the IPv4 protocol. The conversion to IPv6 will require applications, operating systems and network infrastructure to be enabled, and customers will need to develop a well-planned transition — a process that five years ago the IETF predicted would take approximately 10 years. Addressing methods and tools in use today are helping defer this industrywide addressing issue while the IPv6 protocol support is developed and made available across the industry. The availability of the IPv6 preview allows developers to start the conversion process in preparation for customer testing over the next few years, well in time to meet customer needs in the coming years.
“The explosion in the number of users and devices connected to the Internet dictates the need to move to IP version 6,”
said Jawad Khaki, general manager of Networking and Communications at Microsoft.
“The significance and seriousness of this change requires responsible leadership and a sound plan to ensure a smooth transition for customers in a timely fashion. We’re pleased to be on track with a plan that helps coordinate availability of applications and infrastructure consistent with customer and industry needs.”
The Microsoft® implementation of the combined protocol stack and tools will allow a Windows 2000 operating system to connect to and communicate with other IPv6 systems on the 6Bone (an IPv6-based Internet) or on private IPv6 networks. Developers can then use the stack to begin porting and testing application operation over IPv6 networks. As applications become available, Microsoft will continue to work collaboratively with associates and customers on migration planning and test deployments, followed by general availability as part of a future release of the Windows operating system.
On March 20, 2000, developers can download the preview release of IPv6 at http://msdn.microsoft.com/downloads/sdks/platform/tpipv6.asp .
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