GEN6 - Greek IPv6 Pilot

The exhaustion of the central IANA IPv4 address pool has happened on the 3rd of February, 2011 while the upgrade and deployment of IPv6 in Europe has not progressed as anticipated, putting thereby Europe at risk of discontinuity of the Internet growth and business sustainability. This is essentially true for the Public Administrations and eGovernment services, a critical driving force in this multi-stakeholder value chain.

The GEN6 project has an ambitious mission in addressing this fundamental issue by setting up complementary and interoperable national and cross-border pilots across different EU States, in order to validate and catalyze the deployment of IPv6 in the existing EU government infrastructures, services and applications. Expertise, guidelines, best practices and impact studies will be established for forceful dissemination and exploitation at different stages and levels, contributing thereby to a swifter uptake of IPv6 also in the rest of the EU Member States and Associated States.

GEN6 will have 4 different national pilots, some of them replicated in a complementary way in different countries, considering different existing approaches with IPv4:

  1. IPv6 upgrade of eGoverment Network Infrastructures, e-Identification, Services and Applications (Germany, Spain, Netherlands, Czech Republic and Turkey).
  2. IPv6 upgrade of Secure Cloud Services (Luxembourg).
  3. IPv6 upgrade of Energy Efficiency in School Networks (Greece).
  4. IPv6 upgrade of Emergency Response Environments (Slovenia).

The idea for the Greek pilot was based on recent statistics that indicate a high potential for energy saving in public schools in Greece and potentially in public infrastructures. Indicatively, reduction of more than 30% in the carbon footprint is stated in most cases. Through the implementation of the Greek IPv6 pilot, the deployed infrastructure will be extended and many problems that are related with the use of IPv4 for access to the smart energy meters will be outreached. This extension will provide a signal to European stakeholders that IPv6 technology can be “green” enabler.

The pilot will provide an IPv6-only service targeting to end-users and will stimulate end users to use IPv6. In parallel to the increase of the energy awareness of the school communities, IPv6 awareness will be also increased based on the proper dissemination of the selected technologies for the implementation of the pilot and the provision of direct access to the students for viewing real time energy consumption from the smart meters.

The pilot will interconnect a large number of devices placed in different geographical areas, creating an IPv6 network of Internet connected objects. Over this network an IPv6-only service targeting to end-users will be provided, stimulating end users to use IPv6. Through the deployment of the monitoring and management infrastructure, administration overhead and complexity will be reduced and thus operational and management costs will be minimized. IPv6 operational knowledge of GSN as well as of the network administrators of the Greek Ministry of Education, Lifelong Learning and Religious Affairs will be enriched. An official IPv6-enabled web site will be developed by the Ministry, disseminating the project results to a wider community.

Technical challenges for implementing and providing IPv6 services in large-scale networks will be documented. The pilot, upon successful implementation and dissemination of the results, may constitute a point of reference for wider implementation in Greece and worldwide, targeting at reducing energy consumption based on the provision of IPv6-only services.