Each year, Infoblox commissions a “survey” of the Internet’s DNS infrastructure by The Measurement Factory. The survey turns up lots of interesting statistics (well, interesting to me, anyway), including our estimate of how many name servers there are on the Internet, and what percentage of com, net and org subzones are signed with DNSSEC.
This year, we broke out the portion of the survey that has to do with IPv6. The most significant IPv6 measurement in the survey is the percentage of zones whose name servers support IPv6. We look at a random sample of millions of subzones of the big gTLDs and check how many have name servers with at least one AAAA record, indicating IPv6 support.
Last year, the stat was a paltry 1.27%. This year, frankly, I expected a marginally better result, what with the World IPv6 Day hubbub, but nothing miraculous. But miracles have a way of taking you by surprise. I suppose they’d hardly be miracles otherwise.
The agent of this year’s miracle was Go Daddy, the big registrar. Say what you want about their CEO’s hobbies, but Go Daddy’s adoption of IPv6 in their zone hosting infrastructure produced a stunning boost to our stat: The needle leapt from our measly 1% number to 25.4%. Most of that was attributable to Go Daddy, but a few other registrars helped, including OVH, Gandi and Active 24 (which is not, as I’d originally thought, a European competitor to 24-Hour Fitness).
I had no idea there was so much concentration in the zone hosting business. Honestly, I’d worried about the long tail swishing around to smack us in the collective IPv6 adoption butt: Getting that legion of individual zones owned by small companies to deploy IPv6 would take forever. But in fact, the tail wasn’t so long after all, and the actions of a few registrars has improved IPv6′s fortunes with respect to DNS considerably. So much so, actually, that I think IPv6 support among gTLD subzones now leads all other IPv6-related adoption stats.
If I were a betting man (bug, whatever), I’d wager that in the next 12 months, we’ll see a few more leading registrars and zone hosting companies adopt IPv6 to keep up with the Go Daddies, which in turn could drive IPv6 support in gTLD subzones to 50% or more. Wouldn’t that be something?