Suzanne Taylor

IPv4-only RIPE Atlas Anchors Now Supported

Suzanne Taylor

Until now, native IPv4 and IPv6 has been one of the conditions of hosting a RIPE Atlas anchor. However, we realise that IPv6 simply isn't available in some would-be anchor hosts' ASNs. As a result, we've decided to support IPv4-only anchors.


RIPE Atlas anchors are the powerhouses of the RIPE Atlas network, providing a huge amount of data about regional connectivity wherever they are deployed. Whenever possible, we want to use anchors to measure both IPv4 and IPv6 connectivity. However, sometimes this is simply not possible because IPv6 is not available in a given ASN thanks to a lack of upstream providers offering it.

Although we want to do everything possible to encourage IPv6 deployment in networks around the world, the aim of RIPE Atlas is to measure the entire Internet. Until now, we were missing a lot of IPv4-only networks that we could have been measuring with RIPE Atlas - which is why we made the decision to support IPv4-only anchors. 

However, we will only support IPv4-only anchors hosted in ASNs that cannot announce IPv6 for technical reasons. We will automatically check for IPv6 capability during the anchor application process using the RIPEstat Announced Prefixes tool.

We've already been approached by several would-be anchor hosts who were eager to host an anchor in their networks but were technically unable to provide IPv6, and we'll do our best to reach out to them to let them know that they will now be able to host an anchor. If you or anyone you know falls into this category, please get in touch with us at atlas [at] ripe [dot] net. And if you have any feedback about this particular topic, be sure to log in to RIPE Access and then leave a comment below.


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About the author

Suzanne Taylor is a Public Policy & Internet Governance Consultant. In her work with the RIPE NCC, she engages with a broad range of Internet stakeholders including the RIPE NCC membership, governments, law enforcement and intergovernmental organisations. From 2012 to 2016, she worked in communications at the RIPE NCC and has previously worked as a journalist and in media relations and science communications.

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