IPv6 for Enterprise Networks

Authors: Shannon McFarland, Muninder Sambi, Nikhil Sharma and Sanjay Hooda.
Pages: 400
Publisher: Cisco Press
ISBN: 1587142279


The February news that the last batch of IPv4 addresses has been distributed has resounded across the Internet as a final wake up call. It made everybody aware of the fact that IPv6 will very soon become the prevalent standard, and that the time has come to think about deploying it within the enterprise. This book explains why and most especially how to make that transition seamless.

About the authors

Shannon McFarland is a Corporate Consulting Engineer for Cisco serving as a technical consultant for enterprise IPv6 deployment and data center design with a focus on application deployment and virtual desktop infrastructure.

Muninder Sambi is a Product Line Manager for Cisco Catalyst 4500/4900 series platform, is a core member of the Cisco IPv6 development council, and a key participant in IETF’s IPv6 areas of focus.

Nikhil Sharma is a Technical Marketing Engineer at Cisco Systems where he is responsible for defining new features for both hardware and software for the Catalyst 4500 product line.

Sanjay Hooda, a Technical Leader at Cisco, works with embedded systems, and helps to define new product architectures.

Inside the book

This book will not attempt to teach you about networking technologies and deployment – you’re supposed to know that already. It is also helpful if you have a general idea of what IPv6 means and which problems it aims to solve.

The book starts with a helpful chapter on the IPv6 market drivers and a number of frequently asked questions and, of course, answers about the technical benefits of the standard. If you already know all this, you can skip this chapter. And probably the next, too, because you’re supposed to know about network design for various parts of the enterprise network and the various topologies.

IPv4 and IPv6 will probably coexist for quite some time yet, and here is your chance to learn about the mechanisms that will allow them to do it without creating problems for the users. Also very handy is a chapter on network services, that answers the question of how to use and configure multicast, QoS and routing with IPv6, by comparing the process to that in IPv4.

The chapter on planning and IPv6 development is a must – it tells you how to decide where to begin by doing some benefit, risks and cost analysis, and how to plan (and execute) a pilot phase of the deployment so that you can experiment addressing internally.

The remaining chapters deal with deploying IPv6 to the various modules that make a corporate network: campus networks and virtualized networks, WAN/branch networks and remote access VPN, and the data center.

These chapters are extremely technical and make the most valuable part of the book. They effectively translate all those IPv6 concepts into usable configurations complete with a list of benefits and drawbacks of each of the topologies presented.

Each of these modules have their specific idiosyncrasies, and each is thoroughly examined. In the end, you will be able to learn how to manage and monitor the modules effectively with a string of applications and tools helpfully presented here.

Final thoughts

IPv6 for Enterprise Networks is an easy-to-read book and very thorough in its explanations. The authors have recognized the fact that the most difficult part for projects of this size is to choose an appropriate starting point, and have offered a constructive chapter on how to do that.

The technical chapters are also very detailed and extensive, making this book a handy tome for anyone that is charged with ushering the corporate network into the age of IPv6.

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