cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?



  • Hi all,
    I'm contemplating setting up cellular WAN as a backup for my wired WAN. Does anyone know what the status of cellular ipv6 in the USA is (particularly AT&T)? On my iphone, I can see an IPV6 address assigned, but it's unclear if there's a prefix delegation. Iphone tethering does not assign an IPV6 address.
    I was looking at getting a Netgear LB1120, but the instructions for those units only reference IPv4. Can anyone share their experience?
    Thanks!



  • iPhones will provide IPv6 addresses to tethered devices, if available. My work iPhone certainly does. When you say you see an IPv6 address assigned, do you mean a routeable address, which starts with 2: or 3:? Or a link local addres that starts with fe80:?



  • @jknott
    Thank you for the response. I think I had mis-remembered and used an older android rather than my iphone for the initial test. I retested and was able to get a 2600:387 address on my iphone and a 2600:380 on the tethered computer.
    Now, I need to figure out which Ethernet or USB dongles actually pass IPV6 to the connected devices.



  • @gzorn
    I'm using a Netgear Nighthawk and it does not get an IPv6 address like my iPhone does. It will be the same for the 1120 and by the way, the 1120 is very limited on bands. You might want to check what you have in your area versus what it can provide by using the service menu on your phone. The Nighthawk has an ethernet port which I use as my connection for second WAN, it works fine when I test it but I pretty much never need it since my main connection has been solid.



  • @gzorn said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    @jknott
    Thank you for the response. I think I had mis-remembered and used an older android rather than my iphone for the initial test. I retested and was able to get a 2600:387 address on my iphone and a 2600:380 on the tethered computer.
    Now, I need to figure out which Ethernet or USB dongles actually pass IPV6 to the connected devices.

    As I mentioned I have an iPhone at work. I also have an Android phone of my own. My current Pixel 2 provides IPv6 tethering, but my previous phone, a Nexus 5, did not, though it did get an IPv6 address for itself. I have no idea about the "dongles" as I have never had a need to use one. However, an Ethernet NIC, USB or other, should behave just like any other Ethernet NIC. That is the layer 3 protocol is irrelevant, since it works at layer 2. It should even be able to pass IPX or DECNET, provided suitable drivers are available in the OS. Any Ethernet NIC that doesn't support IPv6 should be tossed or used as a paper weight.



  • @gsmornot said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    ’m using a Netgear Nighthawk and it does not get an IPv6 address like my iPhone does.

    According to this it should. Check your config.


  • Rebel Alliance Global Moderator

    Your link has an extra c in the com jknott, but think your confusing their normal nighthawk wifi routers and their LTE modem/routers - they call it nighthawk as well which is pretty stupid if you ask me ;)

    I believe he is talking about
    https://www.netgear.com/support/product/MR1100.aspx
    MR1100 – Nighthawk M1 Mobile Router

    But in the big picture - why would your "backup" require ipv6 to be honest? What resources are you accessing that "require" ipv6?? Unless your talking to some darkeweb or p0rn shit.. What resource is only available via ipv6?

    Its a backup!!! so you live without ipv6 for a short time.. Anyway since ipv6 doesn't nat - rolling over all clients to knew ipv6 prefix when moving to backup brings its own complexity to the table.



  • @johnpoz

    My mistake. I also notice that link problem (no idea how it got there) and fixed it while you were posting. I have a bad habit of checking every time I post a link, as I've seen them fail before.



  • @johnpoz
    Yes, correct, MR1100. I should have specified that. It has the capability of IPv6 but the field is blank so it is not getting a v6 address. None the less I only use it for IPv4 because as you stated it’s backup and for me too complicated dealing with IPv6 on backup. I use it on my main link only.



  • @johnpoz
    You make a fair point. The way that I look at it, I'm putting in infrastructure, so I'd rather get something that is a little more future-proofed. Having said that, by the time ipv4 is obsolete, we'll probably have gotten rid of LTE, too. Really, I don't strictly need a backup. It falls into the 'nice-to-have' category.

    @JKnott - I appreciate that ethernet should really pass anything, but these are embedded cellular-ethernet bridges. That embedded bridge may not support passing ipv6 or do weird things. The word on the LB1120 is that it even in ipv4, it passes some weird DHCP settings (netmask 255.255.255.255 rather than setting a point-to-point link) that make most standards-compliant *nix unhappy (but can probably be fixed manually). The manual for that modem doesn't even touch on IPV6, so I'm suspicious. It seems that the APN settings for cellular matter a LOT for IPV6.



  • ^^^^
    IPv4 was obsolete the day it became necessary to use NAT to extend the addresses. With those devices, it is something above the Ethernet NIC that blocks whatever. All an Ethernet NIC does is pass Ethernet frames, without regard to what they contain.

    In this day & age, any manufacturer that doesn't support IPv6 is incompetent.

    BTW, I first read about IPv6 in the April 1995 issue of Byte magazine, which I happen to have on the shelf behind me. I have every paper issue of Byte, going back to Vol. 1, #1, Sept. 1975.


  • Rebel Alliance Global Moderator

    @jknott said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    In this day & age, any manufacturer that doesn’t support IPv6 is incompetent.

    Agree with you - problem is to be honest its not really ready for prime time... Until the majority of ISPs get their shit together its not really ready.

    And sorry the enterprises will drag and drag and drag their feet on this - since there is not advantage moving to it. NONE!!! Until there are resources that require you to have IPv6 there is never going to be a "NEED" to have it..

    I have been playing with ipv6 for years and years as well - guess what I will be retired before its actually the mainstream connectivity no matter how much you want it to happen..

    Where it is actually deployed an used is devices like cell phones - because there is million and million of them.. And they use a gateway to talk to ipv4.. So not even like you need ipv6 to let mobile devices talk to your resources.



  • @jknott Poor choice of words on my part. I meant to imply that IPV4 use on the internet will probably drag on for about as long as cellular LTE is available, regardless of the technical advantages of IPV6. You don't have to like it, but there it is.
    The lack of good documentation of IPV6 support for recent cellular modems is certainly disappointing, but the customer base really isn't calling for it.



  • Actually, the cell hardware has long been ready for IPv6. I'm on Rogers and I have it on my cell phone, including tethering. I first started running IPv6, via tunnel, over 8 years ago and my Nexus 1 supported it, as did my computers running Linux or Windows, including virtual machines. Back in 2010, I was working on the Rogers LTE rollout and everything we put in was IPv6 ready In Canada, there are several ISPs and carriers supporting IPv6, but for some reason the biggest, Bell Canada, doesn't. A few months ago, I spent about 1.5 weeks working in their "Wireless Technology Innovation Centre", in Mississauga, Ont. One person I was talking with hadn't even heard of IPv6 and they're working on future products there!!! After he said he had it on his cell phone, I had to explain to him the difference between a link local and global address. I read some articles, a couple of years back, about how Comcast was moving their entire network to IPv6, as they didn't have enough addresses, even with RFC1918, to seamlessly managed all the devices in their network. Both Comcast and Rogers use 464XLAT to provide IPv4 over the IPv6 only network.

    @johnpoz

    My carrier/ISP supports IPv6 on the cell and cable networks, so I can directly access any IPv6 site on the 'net. 464XLAT is used on the cell network for accessing those sites or services that are IPv4 only. I get 2 public IPv4 addresses on my cable modem and 2^72 IPv6. Adoption of IPv6 is taking far too long due to those who insist IPv4 is good enough, even though there aren't enough IPv4 addresses for every mobile device, let alone anything else.

    BTW, on cable networks, there are a lot more addresses than what the customer sees. In addition to the routers, servers, switches etc., inside the ISPs. just about every piece of equipment on the cable network, other than line amps, splitters and taps, has an address for management purposes. I am currently doing some work for the cable company in my area, which also happens to be my ISP. One app we have reports things like signal and noise levels, among other info, for every single device, right on down to the cable modem, PVR or VoIP terminal. There are hundreds of devices on each node which serves a neighbourhood and many nodes around the city, along with a few "head ends".



  • @jknott Try to find an AAAA record for forum.netgate.com or www.netgate.com



  • @isaacfl said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    @jknott Try to find an AAAA record for forum.netgate.com or www.netgate.com

    Kinda pathetic. A company that sells network gear is stuck in the past. Back when I was working on that Rogers LTE rollout, we were putting in Cisco switches at the sites. I had a call from a guy at Adtran (I have a lot of experience with Adtran gear) and asked him about IPv6 support. About all he could offer was switches that passed IPv6 packets, as any Ethernet switch should. Management was still IPv4. I asked him why he was selling obsolete gear, when the customer required IPv6 support. He couldn't answer that. This would have been about 8 years ago. At that time I was running IPv6 at home and we had it in the office. I've also had it on my cell phone for well over 2 years.

    In short, whether at home or at work, I have IPv6 available, both on the network and cell phones.



  • @jknott said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    @isaacfl said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    @jknott Try to find an AAAA record for forum.netgate.com or www.netgate.com

    In short, whether at home or at work, I have IPv6 available, both on the network and cell phones.

    I have IPv6 at home and I had it at work (retired now).

    I have been using pfsense about a month now at home, for the ability to subnet, and have been considering switching totally to ipv6 only as a homelab experiment. I only have one old wifi thermostat, that doesn't support ipv6.

    I have T-Mobile for cellular and they are ipv6 only.

    I don't know if you are familiar with https://go6lab.si/current-ipv6-tests/nat64dns64-public-test/ but they have an online NAT64/DNS64 setup for testing. If HE or AWS would offer a such a service I would use it just to get rid of the single ipv4 address that is scanned constantly.


  • Rebel Alliance Global Moderator

    @isaacfl said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    I had it at work (retired now).

    And what company was that? Your saying your enterprise was IPv6.. On their LAN!!! So you desktop got and used ipv6 on the lan and could to the internet on this ipv6 address. And what advantage did that bring them - where was the cost savings in that? Management and control of dual stack is just more money and more complex.

    Not talking some ma and pap shop where they get their computers and the computer store and plug them in. Talking an enterprise with 10K some users with multiple locations. An actual IT staff with Security, policies and procedures, change control and the like. Sure you plug in your windows computer and you have IPv6 ;) It will teredo out on your ass and give you IPv6 even when you don't want it too ;)

    I have T-Mobile for cellular and they are ipv6 only.

    As I pointed out already - mobile phones is major user of IPv6.. And they talk to ipv4 with gateway.



  • @johnpoz It wasn't a company. It was a large government agency. The Administrative networks, did have some dual stack. Still a lot ipv4 only but we never had NAT because we had (have?) lots of ipv4 address space. Every computer had to be known by ip. We were under directive to start giving away our ip4 addresses, but since NAT was not an option, our mission critical systems under development were moving to ipv6.



  • @isaafl : this is science fiction for me - the world up side down. Really ?? a large government agency using IPv6 to overcome shortage of IPv4 .... Woow. Impressed.
    Most big - private companies are still treating ipv6 as a Hollywood show monkey.

    @johnpoz : The black copters are using ipv6 ... wonder how long they stay in the air.

    @isaafl : I tried that, a year ago. IPv6 only @home. It was hard .... but I could post here. Today, forum.netgate.com is IPv4 only so : no way.



  • @gertjan we didn’t have a shortage in IPv4. It was a presidential directive to move to ipv6.



  • @isaacfl said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    @gertjan we didn’t have a shortage in IPv4. It was a presidential directive to move to ipv6.

    We had a shortage the day we needed NAT to deal with all the computers. This was even before mobile devices showed up and there are more of them than IPv4 addresses.



  • @gertjan said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    Most big - private companies are still treating ipv6 as a Hollywood show monkey.

    Microsoft, Google, IBM, Cisco...



  • @johnpoz said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    And what advantage did that bring them - where was the cost savings in that?

    Getting rid of NAT eventually and all the problems it brings. You can't fix problems if you refuse to fix them.



  • @gsmornot - Thanks for the warning on the bands. One of my android devices picks up band 2, which is supported by the 1120. Although the Nighthawk seems to definitely not support IPV6, there's an ambiguous amazon review that suggests that IPV6 works on the LB1120.

    I was able to get a decent price on ebay, so I pulled the trigger on it. I'll report back when I get it.



  • @gzorn said in cellular ipv6 in USA, preferably AT&T?:

    @gsmornot - Thanks for the warning on the bands. One of my android devices picks up band 2, which is supported by the 1120. Although the Nighthawk seems to definitely not support IPV6, there's an ambiguous amazon review that suggests that IPV6 works on the LB1120.

    I was able to get a decent price on ebay, so I pulled the trigger on it. I'll report back when I get it.

    The Nighthawk does support IPv6 it’s just not given an address at the moment. The 1120 has no carrier aggregation, Nighthawk will do 4 band if available in the area.



  • @gsmornot
    I misread your comment - it's interesting because Netgear support is on record on their site saying that IPV6 isn't supported on the MR1100.
    As for carrier aggregation, I can live without blazing speeds on this. As you say, it's only going to be a backup.



  • I can confirm that the LB1120 on AT&T does receive an IPV6 address (2600:) on AT&T wireless in router and bridge modes. However, I think it uses autoconf with a single /64 rather than DHCP6 - no prefix delegation is returned. Ideally, I'd like to at least get IPV6 working enough that I can serve OpenVPN on the cellular address as a backup (IPV4 is NAT'ed).
    I'm having trouble getting PFsense configure the interface and routes. If I set the interface to configure with SLAAC, PFsense seems to assume the role of default gateway (fe80:1). I just found mention in the bugtracker of setting IPV6 configuration to DHCP6 with prefix delegation set to 'none'. I will try that and see what happens.
    From: https://redmine.pfsense.org/issues/1834

    I was able to get IPV6 pinging on my windows laptop, so I know it's at least possible to get connectivity.



  • I can confirm that it's possible to get IPV6 on the LB1120 in bridge mode with AT&T working in PFsense, but it's a VERY non-optimal configuration.
    It appears that I get a single /64 via SLAAC (as mentioned above). The default route for internet isn't fe80::1 It appears to be randomly generated and locally advertised. Here's where things get weird - although I can see the router adverts, the router won't actually pass the packets if I boot it connected to PFsense.
    Here's what did work:

    1. Hook the LB1120 (unpowered) up to a computer running windows.
    2. Turn on the LB1120 and let it boot
    3. Query the ethernet port in windows with 'ipconfig'. Record the IP address received by windows, the GW address assigned, and the ethernet address of the windows machine's ethernet port.
    4. Unplug the LB1120 from the win10 computer (don't power it off).
    5. Configure PFsense to spoof the win10 computer's HW address, set static IPV6 using the assigned address (though you can actually change it slightly, too). I'm also assigning it as a /126 (/128 might be possible), and set a static gw recorded above.
      The mac spoof is necessary to get both a DHCPv4 IP and working IPV6. Yes, this is incredibly hackish. Ideally, I'd like to figure out what magic is happening with windows that isn't happening with PFsense, so I can set this thing to autoconfig.

    So far, I see only 2 differences in the packet captures:

    1. Windows uses an AT&T-advertised nameserver on a private local address:
    fc00:a:a::300
    

    I tried hard-coding that nameserver in the config, but it did not help.

    1. Windows sends a bunch of broadcasts on ff02::16. This is multicast listener discovery. I'm not sure how to make PFsense send these, and only a few search hits for mld with pfsense. Any ideas?

    Now, I'm having some trouble getting ipv6 packets to pass the wireless WAN link when the router is set to prefer the wired IPV6. But that's a multi-WAN issue, so I'll probably start a new thread on that.