Internet Protocol version 6 is the successor of the widely deployed version 4. Thus far, adoption of IPv6 in cellular networks and on the internet has been slow. Lately, however, the industry’s interest in IPv6 deployment has increased significantly as the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) and Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC) IPv4 address pools have already dwindled. IPv6 deployments for cellular networks have already started and will gain significant traction during 2012. It is important that all devices and IP-version aware applications are enhanced with support for IPv6.
The latest developer-mode update for Harmattan includes beta-level support for IPv6 targeted for developers’ and IPv6 experimenters’ needs. Enabling this will allow users and network operators to take advantage of IPv6 support in the Nokia N9, in order to test applications as well as network deployments. The IPv6 enabler package can be installed on the device by going to “Settings->Security->Developer mode”-view and selecting “Install” for IPv6 at the bottom of the view.
Once installed, this feature loads an IPv6 kernel module and enables IPv6 for WiFi and cellular network interfaces. In the case of WiFi, IPv6 addresses are configured whenever the attached WiFi network is IPv6 enabled. In the case of cellular networks, whenever an Internet connection with IPv4 type of Packet Data Protocol (PDP) context is activated also IPv6 type of PDP context activation is attempted to the same Access Point Name (APN) as IPv4 was. Please note that the IPv6 on the cellular networks usually requires special service subscription and is not currently available at all on most cellular operators’ networks.
The IPv6 module does support cellular network setups that use different APNs for IPv6 than for IPv4. However, that requires manual creation of a file called “/etc/v6apn” that shall contain the IPv6 APN name, and nothing else. IPv6-only networks are not supported.
After the installation of this package, and when connected to IPv6 enabled networks, it is possible, for example, to use Web browser to surf to IPv6 enabled websites. More importantly, also Qt supports IPv6 and it is possible, for example, to explicitly open IPv6 socket connections with QAbstractSocket::connectToHost or utilize QNetworkAccessManager to load content over IPv6. This IPv6 feature enables addition and verification of Qt applications’ IPv6 support on Harmattan.
For more information about Nokia’s views on IPv6 transition, please see Forum Nokia document entitled: ”Nokia Views on IPv6 Transition”.
Source Nokia Developer Blogs