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IPv6 - Google ranking site higher?

     
3:29 pm on Nov 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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A client today sent me an email asking me to convert his website to IPv6 as he'd read that Google is ranking IPv6 sites higher.

My understanding is that IPv6 is the IP address given for a domain/site and that most servers are not yet using this and that many ISPs aren't capable of handling these addresses.

How, apart from on the server end, can you make a site IPv6 enabled?
I can't find any reference to Google ranking sites higher/better because of this, have I missed something?

Advice/comments?
7:59 pm on Nov 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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No there is no evidence of this but to appease your client I would just do it as they obviously think its the case and no amount of telling them otherwise will convince them.
8:39 pm on Nov 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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convert his website to IPv6

It kinda sounds as if the client doesn't actually know what this means.

:: detour here to confirm earlier impression that IPv6 includes a sliver that duplicates IPv4 addresses, but IPv4 as such is not likely to disappear in the foreseeable future ::

If they insist on making a wholly unnecesssary change, charge them a wildly inflated price using your personal Silliness Tax. You may call it by a different name, but everyone's got one.
8:56 pm on Nov 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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There is a good article here about ipv6 [moz.com...]

I cant see any logical reason why ipv6 address would give a solid clue to Google about a site's quality but I guess its a similar story to the https debacle. If you read the above link, it mentions that the ipv6 protocol is currently being bottlenecked by the ISPs. If the word goes round that ipv6 ip gives you a Google performance boost, I can see thousands of clients knocking on the doors of the hosting companies demanding ipv6 for their site. Nothing is quicker at bringing about change than a financial opportunity.
10:15 pm on Nov 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I'm confused. i thought that the existing IpV4 set of addresses will be a subset of the new IpV6 set, and will therefore automatically be treated as IpV6 addresses when the time comes.
10:19 pm on Nov 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I cant see any logical reason why ipv6 address would give a solid clue to Google about a site's quality but I guess its a similar story to the https debacle.

And the info that was prominently circulated about a dedicated IP ranking better than shared, contrary to much evidence of sites on shared IPs ranking just fine.
11:35 pm on Nov 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

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i thought that the existing IpV4 set of addresses will be a subset of the new IpV6 set, and will therefore automatically be treated as IpV6 addresses when the time comes.

Sort of. Since there are vastly more IPv6 addresses than IPv4 addresses, one sub-range of IPv6 has been set aside as a duplicate of existing IPv4. (It may actually be five subranges, a different one for each registry. I looked it up once but didn't bookmark it. Probably somewhere at IANA* though.)

It's kind of like phone numbers. When your town was small, everyone's number was 4 digits. When the number of telephones passed 10,000, all the old numbers became, say, 753-\d\d\d\d while the new numbers were 756-\d\d\d\d from the beginning. And there had to be a transition period when you could use either 4 numbers or 7.

Is it possible that OP's client is afraid the IPv6/IPv4 pairing means everyone on an existing IPv4 will be slapped with Duplicate Content (because we have two IP addresses) and the only way to be safe is to move over to a strictly-IPv6 address? One never knows with clients.


* I tried [tools.ietf.org], honest, but the discussion of "Well-Known Prefix" vs. "Network-Specific Prefix" is so much Hungarian to me.
5:19 am on Nov 24, 2014 (gmt 0)

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IPv6 or IP version 6 is the next generation Internet protocol which will eventually replace the current protocol IPv4. IPv6 has a number of improvements and simplifications when compared to IPv4. The primary difference is that IPv6 uses 128-bit addresses as compared to the 32-bit addresses used with IPv4. Among other things, this improvement is expected to make assigning address to wireless devices easier and accommodate the myriad smart network enabled devices that will surround us in the future.

IPv6 and IPv4 will coexist on the Internet for quite a while. Currently some of the IPv6 Internet exists as tunnels over the existing IPv4 Internet.


From one of my hosts, feel free to chase them down, you'll be happy.

Customer who thinks IPv6 will improve their rankings doesn't have the slightest clue about ranking.
2:55 pm on Nov 24, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Thank you, I'm glad that you people posted since I suddenly thought, like juliat72, that I had completely missed something in my understanding of IPv6.
3:05 pm on Nov 24, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Thanks all, I've told him to stop listening to 'so called experts' as all the hosting companies I have spoken to say he would need a dedicated IP on a dedicated server which would be cost prohibitive for a small company and there is absolutely no need to do anything about this now...
2:39 am on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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(...) all the hosting companies I have spoken to say he would need a dedicated IP on a dedicated server (...)


It sounds as if you've been talking to the wrong hosting companies. There are plenty of shared hosts offering IPv6, including many well-known hosting companies in North America and Europe.

There is absolutely no obligation to have a dedicated IPv4 address, an IPv6 address would be dedicated by design. There is no correlation between the two addresses.

Will IPv6 help ranking in Google? Absolutely not. But supporting IPv6 is a good idea in general. Assuming you find a hosting company to your liking which will set it up for you, your main challenges include ensuring your tools such as analytics, or IP address logging functionalities within your CMS (if you have one), or your IP-blocking code (.htaccess etc.) can handle IPv6 connections.

IPv6 is not the future - increasingly it is the present. My ISP (a major one in Canada) offers native IPv6 capability, as does my router, and all but one of my websites are available via IPv6 (only an outdated CMS is stopping the one site).

There is little need for a dedicated IPv4 address for most websites these days, it's wasteful and pointless. SSL (https) over a shared IPv4 address, with SNI and an IPv6 address is the way to go. Cheap, secure, forward-looking, and fully-supported by Google.
11:26 am on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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He has now said "What I had heard is that websites with an AAAA tag properly configured will soon get an advantage"

?
1:23 pm on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I had the impression that they will make IPv6 backward-compatible with IPv4, which they will grandfather in by programming everything to add a string of zeroes to the front of every IPv4 address.
2:17 pm on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I don't think it's that far fetched that Google might use "presence of an AAAA dns record" (the DNS record for your IPV6 address) as a ranking factor. Perhaps not a strong signal, but who knows?

Especially since they've moved much of their work to machine learning. Remember that they have a set of quality raters judge websites based on one set of criteria...then the machine learning algorithm tries to find things that "good" or "bad" sites have in common. And, the algorithm doesn't care if a signal seems to make sense or not.

I would bet that at the moment, most sites that have an IPV6 AAAA record are high quality sites. Google.com, Facebook.com, YouTube.com, Wikipedia.org, etc, all have IPV6 addresses published.
4:20 pm on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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What's the difference between a "AAAA" dns record and a non-AAAA?
4:32 pm on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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From what I understand AAAA is the IPv6 version of an A record
6:00 pm on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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What's the difference between a "AAAA" dns record and a non-AAAA?


As mentioned above, it's the IPV6 version of an A record. DNS records are basically a simple key -> value pair, and you can have more than one value for a key.

Some examples:

# a couple of google's many A records
google.com. A 74.125.198.113
google.com. A 74.125.198.139
# 1 AAAA record for google.com (AAAA is the IPV6 version of an A record)
google.com. AAAA 2607:f8b0:4003:c07::65
# A CNAME record for mail.google.com (CNAME is an alias hostname)
mail.google.com. CNAME googlemail.l.google.com.
# 2 of 5 MX records (where mail to that domain should go) for google.com
google.com. MX 10 aspmx.l.google.com
google.com. MX 40 alt3.aspmx.l.google.com.


There are many other DNS record types, here's a few:

TXT - Used for many things, including SPF and DKIM (both email anti-spam measures)
TYPE257 - For DNSSEC
SOA - "Start of Authority"
NS - Denotes authoritative nameserver for a domain
7:40 pm on Nov 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Well I just logged in to my domain registrar (one of the best-known), but couldn't find any options for a AAAA dns record. In any case I don't see any reason to spend any time on this matter right now.,
 

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