Internet’s ‘Next Generation’ On Display In Beijing
Posted by Bob Violino, Sep 5, 2008 09:16 AM
Some of the latest computing and networking technologies were on display or in use during the Olympic Games in Beijing this summer, and IPv6, the so-called "next generation" Internet Protocol, was one of them.
IPv6 (Internet Protocol Version 6) was developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force to slowly replace the current IPv4, with the two protocols coexisting during a transition period of several years. Among the potential benefits of the newer protocol are a substantial increase in the number of IP addresses available for devices such as mobile phones, and easier administration of networks.
The official Web site of the Beijing Games (www.beijing2008.cn) upgraded to IPv6 in May, well in advance of the start of the Olympics. This marked the first time that an Olympics Web site had been developed using high-speed IPv6 technology, according to the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad.
The Web site was jointly designed by BOCOG, the China Education and Research Network (CERNET) and Sohu.com, a Chinese online media, communications, and mobile services company. It provided faster and more secure services for users worldwide, the organizing committee says, thanks to an additional 12 servers that were deployed at Tsinghua University, where CERNET’s national network center is located.
Olympics officials say the new technology was expected to help alleviate traffic pressures on the current servers in use by diverting part of the traffic from international visitors to IPv6 servers.
BOCOG says China has built the largest "pure IPv6 system," called CNGI (China Next Generation Internet)-CERNET2, which links 25 network nodes in 20 major cities around the country. The development of the Olympics Web site under the framework of CNGI-CERNET2 will play a key role in promoting China’s native IPv6 backbone to the world, the organizing committee says.
The CNGI project is a five-year plan launched by the Chinese government to give the nation an early entry into using the technology to promote and implement IPv6.
In addition to the Web site, IPv6 played other roles during the Olympics, such as providing the network technology for such applications as security cameras, lighting in Olympics venues, video streaming, and high-definition TV.