"Although IPv6 addresses look nothing like IPv4 addresses, they do have their similarities. The biggest differences are that IPv4 addresses are 32 bits long, and IPv6 addresses are 128 bits long. Because of the excessive length of an IPv6 address, they are represented in an abbreviated form that will probably look completely foreign to anyone who has never used them before.
Any time a seasoned network administrator sees an address like 192.168.1.1, they instantly recognize it as an IPv4 address. This address contains four, eight bit numbers separated by periods. In order to understand how IPv6 addressing works, it is important to realize that when you see an IPv4 address, the address is being expressed in decimal form. This decimal form is a shortcut to expressing a 32 bit binary number. For example, the IP address 192.168.1.1 expressed in binary form looks like this:
11000000.10101000.00000001.00000001In the interest of saving space, I don’t want to get into how I did the conversion, but if you need help converting from a decimal number to a binary number, you can use the Windows Calculator.
Hopefully, my example above helps you to understand that even a simple IPv4 address is really long when you convert it to binary form. This problem is compounded when we start talking about IPv6 addresses though. Like an IPv4 address, an IPv6 address is an abbreviated form of a binary number. For example, here is what a 128 bit binary number looks like:
1111111010000000 0000000000000000 0000000000000000 0000000000000000 0000001000001100 0010100111111111 1111111001000100 0111111000111111When an IPv4 address is expressed in binary form, it is expressed in eight digit chunks called octets. Each of these octets corresponds to one of the numbers in the address (when it is displayed in digital for"