In the Information Technology world, you often hear people say that IPv6 is “the worst” or it causes problems and breaks things with the high recommendation of disabling it.  However, the source of this recommendation is never clearly specified nor validated and there is significant reason to leave it enabled.

When you talk to Microsoft or attend seminars, you always hear them recommend to not to disable IPv6.  The explanation is located at the link below.  I love how Microsoft begins the explanation in this Q&A.

IPv6 for Microsoft Windows

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/network/cc987595.aspx

Q. What are Microsoft’s recommendations about disabling IPv6?

A.

It is unfortunate that some organizations disable IPv6 on their computers running Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008 R2, or Windows Server 2008, where it is installed and enabled by default. Many disable IPv6-based on the assumption that they are not running any applications or services that use it. Others might disable it because of a misperception that having both IPv4 and IPv6 enabled effectively doubles their DNS and Web traffic. This is not true.

From Microsoft’s perspective, IPv6 is a mandatory part of the Windows operating system and it is enabled and included in standard Windows service and application testing during the operating system development process. Because Windows was designed specifically with IPv6 present, Microsoft does not perform any testing to determine the effects of disabling IPv6. If IPv6 is disabled on Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008 R2, or Windows Server 2008, or later versions, some components will not function. Moreover, applications that you might not think are using IPv6—such as Remote Assistance, HomeGroup, DirectAccess, and Windows Mail—could be.

Therefore, Microsoft recommends that you leave IPv6 enabled, even if you do not have an IPv6-enabled network, either native or tunneled. By leaving IPv6 enabled, you do not disable IPv6-only applications and services (for example, HomeGroup in Windows 7 and DirectAccess in Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 are IPv6-only) and your hosts can take advantage of IPv6-enhanced connectivity.

 

 

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