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How to identify IPv6 Link Local Addresses

Posted On 2007-02-13 by FortyPoundHead
Keywords: IPv6
Tags: General Networking Tip Vista
Views: 1618


It's important to start learning how to identify IPv6 addresses if you want to be able to troubleshoot network connectivity issues on IPv6 networks, and this is especially important as IPv4 to IPv6 migrations accelerate in different parts of the world.

One common type of IPv6 address is the link-local address, a unicast address that is used by neighboring nodes on the same network link (that is, not separated by routers). Think of link-local addresses as the IPv6 form of Automatic IP Address Allocation (APIPA), a mechanism used by Windows computers to automatically assign themselves address of the form 169.254.x.y when a DHCP server is unavailable and no static addresses have been assigned. Link-local addresses are similarly self-assigned, and you can always recognize them by opening a command prompt on your computer and typing ipconfig. If the IP address displayed for your computer starts with fe80:: then you''ve got a link-local address that has been self-assigned using the Neighbor Discovery process used by IPv6.

You can test this in Windows Vista, for example, since this platform has IPv6 enabled by default. The limitation of link-local addresses is that IPv6 routers cannot forward link-level traffic outside the link.


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