Solved Windows 7 Connectivity Question: Am I using IPv6 ?

October 9, 2013 at 08:15:52
Specs: Win 7
Is there an easy way to determine whether I'm using IPv6 when
connected to the Internet?

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


See More: Windows 7 Connectivity Question: Am I using IPv6 ?

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✔ Best Answer
October 10, 2013 at 07:07:56
There could be (and probably are) IPv6 only sites. If your ISP doesn't support routing over IPv6 (it doesn't), you won't be able to get to them. If you really want to get to them, you are going to have to find one of the services that will tunnel IPv6 traffic over IPv4.

Unless you actually need IPv6, your best bet would be to make sure your PC and router are IPv6 compatible. Then, when (if, really) your ISP turns on IPv6, you'll pick up the benefits of IPv6 without acting.

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#1
October 9, 2013 at 08:27:21
Hi Jeff,

Click the link given below to determine if you have IPv4 or IPv6:

http://bit.ly/9gwco5

Hope it helps.

Thanks & Regards
Manshu S
#iworkfordell


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#2
October 9, 2013 at 09:14:53
I don't want to know if it is installed, enabled, and functional,
I want to know if and when it is actually being used.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#3
October 9, 2013 at 10:51:42
The easy answer is to disable IPv4. If you can still surf, you're using IPv6. (You're using v4)

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Related Solutions

#4
October 9, 2013 at 12:25:40
I gathered that some websites would connect via IPv4 and others
via IPv6. If it is all one or all the other, then I don't understand what
determines which is used. Can you explain that a bit?

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis

message edited by Jeff Root


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#5
October 9, 2013 at 13:06:48
Assuming that IPV6 is enabled I expect that both IPV4 and IPV6 would be used. Which one is used in specific cases would depend on the configuration of the DNS servers (not just the one you are using) involved. Other than disabling IPV6 you have no control.

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#6
October 9, 2013 at 22:50:19
You can install a browser extension to show which protocol is being used to access the current website.

For Chrome: IPvFoo
For Firefox: SixOrNot, IPvFox


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#7
October 10, 2013 at 05:32:13
It's really up to the ISP in question. If it doesn't allow routing across via IPv6, then you'll be using IPv4. ISPs don't allow routing across IPv6 because that would require new hardware, and at this point there's no appreciable gain.

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#8
October 10, 2013 at 06:20:10
Does that mean that any website I can reach with IPv6 I can instead
reach with IPv4 by disabling IPv6 ? Or are there places I can go only
if IPv6 is enabled?

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#9
October 10, 2013 at 07:06:24
Most places you navigate to will either have a duel stack setup(both IPv4 and IPv6). Even if they don't your provider probably has a tunnel broker set up to handle IPv6. At this point, you shouldn't be denied access to anywhere you want to go.


::mike

http://www.computing.net/howtos/sho...

message edited by mikelinus


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#10
October 10, 2013 at 07:07:56
✔ Best Answer
There could be (and probably are) IPv6 only sites. If your ISP doesn't support routing over IPv6 (it doesn't), you won't be able to get to them. If you really want to get to them, you are going to have to find one of the services that will tunnel IPv6 traffic over IPv4.

Unless you actually need IPv6, your best bet would be to make sure your PC and router are IPv6 compatible. Then, when (if, really) your ISP turns on IPv6, you'll pick up the benefits of IPv6 without acting.

How To Ask Questions The Smart Way


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#11
October 10, 2013 at 08:18:04
How are you able to know that my ISP doesn't support IPv6 ?
Do you have access to computing.net's server or something?

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#12
October 10, 2013 at 09:00:38
I don't, but since you're asking us and not your ISP, you don't either. I'm mostly just making an educated guess. As I said, there's no appreciable benefit to the ISP to support IPv6 yet, and the cost is high.

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#13
October 10, 2013 at 10:25:50
I don't want to know if it is installed, enabled, and functional,
I want to know if and when it is actually being used.

Just out of my own morbid sense of curiosity, why do you want to know this?

As has been pointed out, "you" don't use IPv6 to connect to the internet. Your ISP can but probably doesn't. I say this because you don't actually connect directly to the internet. Your ISP does. You connect to your ISP and through them get your internet access.

You could enable IPv6 on your PC (if it's windows 7, chances are it is by default) and you could disable IPv4 but your PC would only then be able to communicate with other IPv6 devices. Chances are your SOHO router is only using IPv4, and if it is, you'd lose your ability to communicate with the internet if you did so.

Very few (if any) ISP's have changed over to IPv6 as of yet. Really, they don't need to completely change over to IPv6 any more than places of business need to. All you need is to NAT between IPv4 internally and IPv6 at your point of presence to have your external interface be on IPv6

This isn't necessarily expensive either as most IPv4/6 NAT devices can do the necessary translation between versions already. I suspect one could quickly setup a Linux or Unix box to do this and it wouldn't cost you any more than the computer running the OS.

Here's a link to an article that gives you brief and simple overview of the different methods of deploying IPv6 in a mixed environment.

http://www.dummies.com/how-to/conte...

I know where I work, we'll stick to IPv4 internally and only have IPv6 at our point of presence. Since we're an AS, all our BGP routers are already IPv6 capable (we're using Linux) but the IPv6 is not enabled at this time. When the time comes to switch over, we'll enable the NAT, make the external interfaces IPv6 and leave the internal ones on IPv4.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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#14
October 10, 2013 at 18:35:20
>> I don't want to know if it is installed, enabled, and functional,
>> I want to know if and when it is actually being used.
>
> Just out of my own morbid sense of curiosity, why do you
> want to know this?

What I've read about IPv6 suggests that it provides new ways
to extract info from my computer without my knowing about it.
If I don't get any advantage from having IPv6 enabled, then I can
just disable it and don't have to worry about it. But if there are
websites I can only reach with IPv6, then I need to put time and
effort into learning enough about IPv6 to determine whether it
actually poses any risks for me, and then I'll have to decide
whether it is worth those risks.

> As has been pointed out, "you" don't use IPv6 to connect to
> the internet. Your ISP can but probably doesn't. I say this
> because you don't actually connect directly to the internet.
> Your ISP does. You connect to your ISP and through them
> get your internet access.

If that was pointed out here, I didn't catch it. It is a surprise, and
doesn't make sense to me.

If ISPs use Internet Protocol but end users like me don't, then
why do end users like me have the ability to enable and disable
use of those Internet Protocols on our computers?

> You could enable IPv6 on your PC (if it's windows 7, chances
> are it is by default)

It was enabled by default. I disabled it. I can't tell whether I'm
missing anything I want as a consequence.

> Very few (if any) ISP's have changed over to IPv6 as of yet.

That was what I understood the situation to be three or four
years ago. I'm asking now because I figured that might be
considered ancient history, with most ISPs having long since
switched over to IPv6 as their default IP.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#15
October 10, 2013 at 18:59:18
If ISPs use Internet Protocol but end users like me don't, then why do end users like me have the ability to enable and disable use of those Internet Protocols on our computers?
For the same reason you could enable IPX in WinXP. It's one of those, "why limit your options?" moves. It hurts nothing to have it there, and it gives you the option to run IPv6 on your home network. Also, Mac and Linux supported IPv6, and you know MS wasn't going to let their competitors have a feature that wasn't in Windows.

That was what I understood the situation to be three or four years ago. I'm asking now because I figured that might be considered ancient history, with most ISPs having long since switched over to IPv6 as their default IP.
For the past decade, I kept hearing we're at the tipping point. We haven't tipped yet.

What I've read about IPv6 suggests that it provides new ways to extract info from my computer without my knowing about it.
Such as? Surely you're not worried about having a publicly unique IP, are you?

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#16
October 10, 2013 at 22:41:06
> As has been pointed out, "you" don't use IPv6 to connect to
> the internet. Your ISP can but probably doesn't. I say this
> because you don't actually connect directly to the internet.
> Your ISP does. You connect to your ISP and through them
> get your internet access.

You are spreading inaccurate information. In order to exchange packets with a public website, you have to be "on the Internet". Your ISP just provides a means for connecting your network to all the other networks in the world. NAT and firewalls muddy the picture a bit, but that's still the fundamental architecture.

This is especially true in the IPv6 world, which is mostly NAT-free because everyone has plenty of addresses. Thus, in order to use IPv6, you need to have IPv6 on your computer, the server you're talking to, and every router in between.

Creating a network with IPv4 on the "inside" NATted to IPv6 on the "outside" is possible in theory, but I've never heard of anyone actually deploying such a monstrosity. (T-Mobile is working on the opposite of that, with IPv6-only phones and a NAT64 gateway to reach legacy services.)

> Very few (if any) ISP's have changed over to IPv6 as of yet.

Currently, IPv6 has been deployed to 4.5% of users in the United States, and 2% globally, which works out to at least tens of millions of people. In the US, the heavy lifters are Comcast, Verizon LTE, and AT&T U-Verse.

Stats: http://www.google.com/intl/en/ipv6/...

message edited by pmarks


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#17
October 10, 2013 at 23:39:00
Thanks, pmarks. It looks like I can probably ignore IPv6 for a
few years, but not much more than a few.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#18
October 11, 2013 at 05:44:14
What I've read about IPv6 suggests that it provides new ways
to extract info from my computer without my knowing about it.
If I don't get any advantage from having IPv6 enabled, then I can
just disable it and don't have to worry about it

I've never heard that IPv6 could provide new ways to extract info from your computer without you knowing. I don't see how it could provide new ways to do so. It's just a communication protocol like IPv4 is. It facilitates communication, nothing more. Getting info from somebody elses PC is going to require software of some sort. Typically, located on the targets computer (ie: trojan).

I won't bother repeating what Razor2.3 said in her response (#15) as it's all accurate and answers your questions.

pmarks

You are spreading inaccurate information. In order to exchange packets with a public website, you have to be "on the Internet".

This is correct. But you don't have a "point of presence" in your home. Your ISP has that. While you are technically "on the internet" you're not attached directly to it. Again, your ISP is. They provide your connection to the internet.

We have a point of presence at my work. In fact, we have two, from two different providers connected redundantly to our BGP routers. Should one fail, the other seamlessly takes over. We are an AS. That's an "autonomous system" on the internet. Your ISP most likely is an AS too.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autono...

Are you an AS at home? No. So you're not actually connected directly to the internet but instead are getting your feed from a provider who is. Maybe it's a fine distinction, but what I said was accurate.

Creating a network with IPv4 on the "inside" NATted to IPv6 on the "outside" is possible in theory, but I've never heard of anyone actually deploying such a monstrosity

Possible in theory?!?! I'm sorry but, you should really get some IPv6 training if you think it's only possible in theory. It's the simplest way for anybody running an IPv4 network to connect to an IPv6 network. As I said, our BGP routers are capable of doing IPv4-IPv6 (and back) translation already. That feature needs only be turned on. We've had discussions about this, during and after our IPv6 training and decided we'll stay IPv4 internally, but enable the NAT at our point of presence.

Monstrosity? No, not really. Monstrously easy from our point of view, hell yes! Flip one switch (so to speak) and we're now IPv6 at our point of presence. Or, run around converting our entire network to IPv6.

Currently, IPv6 has been deployed to 4.5% of users in the United States, and 2% globally, which works out to at least tens of millions of people. In the US, the heavy lifters are Comcast, Verizon LTE, and AT&T U-Verse.

I wonder though if the ISP's you mention, and the others that are running IPv6 that you didn't mention, are only running it at their point of presence or if their clients are also IPv6?? As I said, it's a lot easier for the ISP's to just do IPv6 at the edge than convert their entire networks. I wager most of their clients are still connecting to them via IPv4. How else are they going to provide service to people with computers that aren't IPv6 capable if they don't still run IPv4 out to their clients? I'm sure you're aware not everybody on earths computers are IPv6 capable at this point in time.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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#19
October 11, 2013 at 06:22:02
Curt> I won't bother repeating what Razor2.3 said in her response (#15)
Curt> as it's all accurate and answers your questions.

I wasn't able to make sense of what Razor2.3 said in reply #15.
Starting with your reply #13:

Curt> As has been pointed out, "you" don't use IPv6 to connect to
Curt> the internet. Your ISP can but probably doesn't. I say this
Curt> because you don't actually connect directly to the internet.
Curt> Your ISP does. You connect to your ISP and through them
Curt> get your internet access.

Jeff> If ISPs use Internet Protocol but end users like me don't, then
Jeff> why do end users like me have the ability to enable and disable
Jeff> use of those Internet Protocols on our computers?

Razor> For the same reason you could enable IPX in WinXP.

I've never used XP, so that doesn't tell me anything.

Razor> It's one of those, "why limit your options?" moves. It hurts nothing
Razor> to have it there, and it gives you the option to run IPv6 on your home
Razor> network. Also, Mac and Linux supported IPv6, and you know MS
Razor> wasn't going to let their competitors have a feature that wasn't in
Razor> Windows.

What the two of you say clearly implies that my computer does not
need an IP when connecting to my ISP. It is an option provided for
use on local networks.

Yet when I disable both IPv4 and IPv6, I cannot connect to my ISP.
Clearly you are both wrong -- my computer uses an IP to connect
to my ISP.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#20
October 11, 2013 at 07:24:48
You're getting defensive. Just settle down and tell yourself life isn't worth spending angry at the Internet.

Jeff> If ISPs use Internet Protocol but end users like me don't, then
Jeff> why do end users like me have the ability to enable and disable
Jeff> use of those Internet Protocols on our computers?

Microsoft wasn't in the business of limiting what a person could do with their PC. (Except for when they were.) Just because you're unable to utilize IPv6 doesn't mean everyone everywhere has no need for IPv6.

I've never used XP, so that doesn't tell me anything.
Fair enough. It was a version of Windows released by Microsoft (of course) in 2001. It's remembered fondly because (1) it introduced the WinNT line to residential customers, and (2) it was released roughly 6 years before its successor, Vista. It had three major overhauls in those 6 years, and it had a number of spin off products, including an initially half-hearted x64 release and a version intended for home theater PCs. It also introduced some more annoying practices by Microsoft, including multiple SKUs and on-line activation. It also was the initial target of Microsoft's "Trusted Computing" push. The limitations of which pushed Microsoft to insist on signed drivers and UAC.

What the two of you say clearly implies that my computer does not
need an IP when connecting to my ISP. It is an option provided for
use on local networks.

We never said that at all. If you disable your network, how are you going to talk to your router?

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#21
October 11, 2013 at 09:07:21
Jeff> What the two of you say clearly implies that my computer does not
Jeff> need an IP when connecting to my ISP. It is an option provided for
Jeff> use on local networks.

Razor> We never said that at all.

Curt said it in reply #13:

Curt> As has been pointed out, "you" don't use IPv6 to connect to the
Curt> internet. Your ISP can but probably doesn't. I say this because
Curt> you don't actually connect directly to the internet. Your ISP does.
Curt> You connect to your ISP and through them get your internet access.

So I asked:

Jeff> If ISPs use Internet Protocol but end users like me don't, then
Jeff> why do end users like me have the ability to enable and disable
Jeff> use of those Internet Protocols on our computers?

And you replied:

Razor> For the same reason you could enable IPX in WinXP.
Razor> It's one of those, "why limit your options?" moves. It hurts nothing
Razor> to have it there, and it gives you the option to run IPv6 on your home
Razor> network. Also, Mac and Linux supported IPv6, and you know MS
Razor> wasn't going to let their competitors have a feature that wasn't in
Razor> Windows.

Apparently agreeing with Curt.

Razor> If you disable your network, how are you going to talk to
Razor> your router?

I don't use a router.

But yes, if I disable Internet Protocol on my computer, how am I
going to talk to the Internet? I'd say I can't talk to the Internet in
that case. That's what I found when I tried it.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#22
October 11, 2013 at 11:38:30
There seems to be some fundamental disconnect here, and I think I've identified it.

A network protocol needs buy in from all relevant parties. This includes you, the site you're trying to reach, and enough buy in from your ISP and the Internet at large to route the data. The choice is not yours alone to make, but that doesn't mean you don't have a choice.

It's like the early days of telephones, where you had to tell the operator how to route your call. You could speak English to the operator and your call would get routed; everyone understood each other. You could speak Spanish to the operator, but if the operator didn't speak Spanish, you'd get nowhere. This doesn't preclude you from speaking Spanish to someone in the same room, however.

I'm not sure how we got from, "Don't worry about speaking Spanish to the telephone operators; they don't know the language," to "Don't speak at all, and the telephone will physically know who you want to talk to."

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#23
October 11, 2013 at 21:10:45
I would have to agree a second time with Razor2.3 but I think the disconnect is a lack of understanding of the techonolgy on your part Jeff.

I mean no offense but what it amounts to is, Razor and I are speaking Spanish and you don't. Which is to say, we understand the technology and the nomenclature. You do not. This doesn't make you stupid, it just means we have more training/experience in this area.

It doens't help when I can't translate what I know and understand into "plain English" I'm too used to speaking the appropriate language with others who also speak it.

I'm going to try again to explain in simpler terms....wish me luck! :)

While you probably have IPv6 enabled by default on your computer's network interface. That does not mean it's actually being used. You can test this for yourself. First, let's get your adapter open. Go to:

Control Panel >> Network and Sharing Center >> Change Adapter Settings >> Right click on adapter and select "Properties" from the pulldown menu.

In the window that open's you should see both "Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6)" and "Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)" Chances are they are both checked. They should be by default. This does not mean you're actively using both, it just means both are available for use. I have the "Version 6" disabled on my interface because the router I connect to is not IPv6 capable and I've experienced occasional problems with PC's that have both enabled. My computer obviously runs just fine as I'm able to connect to this site and respond to you.

It's worth noting that since my router is not IPv6 capable, it connects to my ISP using IPv4. They (my ISP) may be using IPv6 where they join the internet (ie: their "point of presence") but I have no way of knowing that. I do know that if I go to one of the "what's my ip" websites on the internet it reports my IP in dotted decimal format which is IPv4. IPv6 would be a hexidecimal address.

You could uncheck "Version 6" on your adapter and disable it and see if you still able to browse the internet? If so, then you're not using it, even if it's enabled.

You say you're not using a router. Before I say anything else I'm going to highly recommend you spend the money and get one. For your own security as well as making it easier to connect any wireless devices you may own (like a pad or smartphone). But mostly because of secrurity.

Now, having said that, you could still do the above test. Disable IPv6, leave IPv4 enabled and what happens? If you can still access the internet, then you're using IPv4 and not 6. If however, you stop communicating, then reverse that and disable IPv4 and enabled IPv6. Does it work now? It should if it didn't the other way.

If you'd rather not do that then google "what's my ip" and copy the external IP address and post it in a reply here. If you do that, please replace the last three digits with X's so you're not broadcasting your IP. That could lead to problems for you, especially if you don't have a router.

In any case you require some kind of communication protocol in order to be able to access the internet. My favorite example is to think of your home. You have an address. If someone wants to send you a letter, they need to know that address. To sned you a letter they put that address on an envelope, attach appropriate postage and a few days (weeks) later, the envelope arrives at your door. What happens if you have no address (or your computer has no protocol)? Obviously, nobody can send you anything. In the case of your computer, they're sending you data in the form of packets (envelopes) to your IP address.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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#24
October 11, 2013 at 22:41:51
I have a fairly good understanding of what a protocol is for and
how it works. I just wasn't familiar with which protocols are used
for connecting which segments of the Internet together. The fact
that IPv4 and IPv6 are on my computer strongly suggested that
they are used to connect my computer to my ISP, so I was very
surprised when you indicated that they aren't. But apparently
your techno-speak way of saying that they are used is to say
that they aren't used.

An Internet acquaintance related this story about himself:

* * * *
Many years ago, I'd been the lead on a particular software
system, and moved on to be replaced by an exceptionally
geeky guy. Well after this happened, our common manager
asked me to sit in on a meeting with her and this guy. I didn't
understand why she needed me there, but after a while it
became clear: Whenever she asked a question, the guy
would answer it. Then I had to translate what he said into
language she could understand.

* * * *
The analogies don't help me much, though they might help
someone who has no idea what a protocol is. In particular,
the idea of "buy in" is terribly vague compared to just saying
in an unambiguous way which protocols are used where.

Curt> While you probably have IPv6 enabled by default on
Curt> your computer's network interface. That does not mean
Curt> it's actually being used. You can test this for yourself.

I told you in reply #14 that I disabled IPv6. I did that shortly
after installing Windows. The reason for this thread was to
find out if that was a bad move. I couldn't tell whether I was
missing anything as a consequence.

Curt> You could uncheck "Version 6" on your adapter and
Curt> disable it and see if you still able to browse the internet?
Curt> If so, then you're not using it, even if it's enabled.
Curt> ...
Curt> Now, having said that, you could still do the above test.
Curt> Disable IPv6, leave IPv4 enabled and what happens?
Curt> If you can still access the internet, then you're using IPv4
Curt> and not 6. If however, you stop communicating, then
Curt> reverse that and disable IPv4 and enabled IPv6. Does
Curt> it work now? It should if it didn't the other way.

I would expect the ISP to try IPv6 first, if it is set up to use IPv6,
and if it finds that it can't communicate with my computer with
IPv6, then it would try IPv4.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis


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#25
October 12, 2013 at 08:01:03
But apparently your techno-speak way of saying that they are used is to say
that they aren't used.

*sighing*

I never said any such thing. What I said was, it's unlikely you're using IPv6

Just FYI, unless your system is a NAT box that translates between both IPv4 and IPv6, you can't use both at the same time. It's a "one or the other" situation. Your computer connects to your ISP using either IPv4 or IPv6. It's not using both. Neither is your ISP in relation to their connection to you.

I told you in reply #14 that I disabled IPv6. I did that shortlyafter installing Windows. The reason for this thread was to find out if that was a bad move. I couldn't tell whether I was missing anything as a consequence.

I probably saw that the first time I read that response but by the time I got down to #22, had forgotten it. Regardless, you've already partially proved my point. If you now enable IPv6 and disable IPv4, you'll find out whether or not that works. If it doesn't, as I suspect it won't, then you've confirmed you, and your ISP, are only using IPv4 between yourselves at this point in time.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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