IP address allocation by ISP's

  CurlyWhirly 17:29 22 May 2005

I don't know whether this is classed as a 'silly' question but is it possible that ISP's could ever run out of IP addresses for it's customers?

The reason why I am asking is that I know that the internet has a finite number of IP addresses which are arrived at by having different combinations of numbers ranging between 0 and 255 for example, IP address

Does anyone know how many combinations of numbers this can produce?
It's just with internet subscriber numbers continually rising worldwide due to the increasing popularity of ADSL connections and the fact that people on broadband generally stay online for MUCH longer periods of time, is it possible that ISP's would eventually run out of IP address allocation numbers or has this contingency already been thought of?
Just curious!

  bremner 17:38 22 May 2005

IP addresses have in effect run out which is why we are moving to IPv6

IPv4 uses 32 bit addresses giving a total of 2^32 = 4,294,967,296 addresses

IPv6 will give 128 bit addresses giving a total of
2^128=340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 addresses

  bremner 17:39 22 May 2005
  Djohn 17:41 22 May 2005

Not a silly question, quite a good one in fact. I believe there are no worrys at the moment with trillions available and only millions in use but there will be a time when its possible to run out on the current format.

It seems as though the people who know about these things are already working on the issue in case it ever arises. Have a look at this google page for plenty of links to your question. click here

  Djohn 17:42 22 May 2005

Didn't see your reply before posting, me forgetting to refressh the page again after going off to do a search. ;o)

  Belatucadrus 17:47 22 May 2005
  CurlyWhirly 17:48 22 May 2005

Thanks Djohn and bremner.
I didn't know that we were on IPv4 and we were planning on going onto IPv6.
It makes me wonder what happened to IPv5 but not to worry.

I forgot to mention in my original post that it isn't JUST home users that get allocated IP adresses but ALL websites including commercial ones so it's no wonder that the limit have more or less run out and we are moving onto a new format with more combinations of IP addresses!
Thanks resolved now and I will be having a read of the links which may take me some time! LOL

  CurlyWhirly 17:49 22 May 2005

Also thanks to Belatucadrus.

I will read all the links. Cheers.

  bremner 17:51 22 May 2005

Did exactly the same myself on a thread this morning.

IPv6 is going to revolutionise the way we live if the 'experts' are to be believed. Every appliance, vehicle and person in the world can have a static IP address.

Telephone numbers will be a thing of the past, you will simple log your IP address into any phone and you will be contactable.

Your cooker can be connected to your wireless network and you will be able to tell it to switch on off from anywhere you can connect. etc etc.etc

  CurlyWhirly 17:54 22 May 2005

p.s. I just found out WHY IPv5 was left out in the upgrade from the current version and that is because:

"Version 5 was used for an experimental stream protocol."

This I read from one of the links given to me.

  Belatucadrus 17:55 22 May 2005

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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