AT&T, Global Crossing team to aid IPv6 transition

AT&T and Global Crossing have created a peering arrangement, establishing interconnections between their networks with an eye toward capitalizing on federal mandates regarding the next-generation Internet protocol.

Agencies have until June 2008 to upgrade their network backbones to IP Version 6, which will support a vast increase in the number of unique IP addresses available and bring other advances over the current IPv4 as well.

"The government, and the world, is moving very slowly down this path" to IPv6, said Hank Beebe, vice president in charge of the Networx contract bid at AT&T Government Solutions. "This gives agencies the ability to test [their new networks] in a real-world environment."

Agencies are making progress toward meeting the target date at various rates, but only a few of them have established test beds, Beebe said. "It's one thing to plan it, but the devil is in the details," he added.

Having a way to test upgrades in the real world will help agencies ensure that they can migrate smoothly from the old to the new, said Alan Rosenberg, Global Crossing's global vice president of business development.

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