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IPv6 – It’s Not An Option

by Jeremy L. Gaddis on May 11, 2012 · 5 comments

in Off-topic

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Those of you who know me in real life are probably quite aware of just how much of a dislike I have for sales and marketing people. That’s why whenever they make themselves look like idiots, I like to acknowledge it and recognize them for it. Besides, marketing folks tend to believe that any publicity is good publicity so I’m certain that they don’t mind me pointing out just how retarded they so often are.

Today’s winner is BT Diamond IP (the missing hyperlink is intentional), who obviously bought my e-mail address from some other assholes a while back. With the World IPv6 Launch now less than a month away, somebody in marketing at BT Diamond IP apparently decided to try to capitalize on the occasion. Thus, they’ve put together an event where they’ll graciously give us, among other things, “recommendations from our experts on how to address” “the key issues that we are all facing as we move to IPv6″ as well as explain “how BT Diamond IP can help you through your migration plan”. How nice of them.

Claire Ritchie, who probably wouldn’t know an IPv6 address from a type 5 LSA, is the “Head of Network Services Marketing” for BT Global Services and the individual responsible for the most recent spam e-mail to land in my inbox. The e-mail attempts to catch our attention with a large graphic at the top by asking “Are you ready for IPv6?” and then declaring quite loudly that “IPv6 — it’s not an option”.

IPv6 -- it's not an option

Later in Claire’s e-mail, we’re reassured that BT Diamond IP “has vast experience on a global scale …”.

I was almost impressed. Even this late in the game, it’s quite uncommon for a large enterprise (such as BT) to have even started deploying IPv6. I mean, to have “vast experience on a global scale” and be in a position to offer up “experts” and IPv6 deployment advice, they must certainly be way ahead of the curve and miles ahead of their competitors, right?

Yeah, um, about that… well, let’s use the UNIX dig command to find out!

$ dig +short btdiamondip.com. AAAA
$ dig +short www.btdiamondip.com. AAAA

Hmm, that’s weird. dig doesn’t return any output. Normally it would return the associated IPv6 addresses (the “AAAA” resource records). Perhaps I’m a little rusty or maybe I’m just straight up using it wrong — let’s try the host command instead. It will either return the records we’re looking for or explicitly tell us that they simply don’t exist.

$ host -t AAAA btdiamondip.com.
btdiamondip.com has no AAAA record
$ host -t AAAA www.btdiamondip.com.
www.btdiamondip.com has no AAAA record

No AAAA resource record for their website? That’s not quite what I expected. Hmm, well, certainly their e-mail system supports IPv6! Claire’s e-mail address is claire.ritchie@bt.com so let’s check what mail servers handle e-mail for the bt.com domain.

$ host -t MX bt.com.
bt.com mail is handled by 10 smtp61.intersmtp.com.
bt.com mail is handled by 10 smtp62.intersmtp.com.
bt.com mail is handled by 10 smtp63.intersmtp.com.
bt.com mail is handled by 10 smtp64.intersmtp.com.
bt.com mail is handled by 10 smtpe1.intersmtp.com.

Wow, five MX hosts — with that many set up it’s obvious they want you to be able to e-mail them and considering the “vast experience on a global scale” that BT has, I bet they’re all running IPv6!

$ for S in `host -t MX bt.com.|awk '{ print $7 }'`
> do
> host -t AAAA $S
> done
smtp64.intersmtp.com has no AAAA record
smtpe1.intersmtp.com has no AAAA record
smtp61.intersmtp.com has no AAAA record
smtp62.intersmtp.com has no AAAA record
smtp63.intersmtp.com has no AAAA record

Interesting, I guess they were right after all. If you’re on an IPv6-only network or want to access their website or send them e-mail over IPv6, well…

IPv6 -- it's not an option

Yep, BT, the company with “vast experience on a global scale”, the ones who are offering up recommendations from their “experts”, the ones who “can help you through your migration plan”, are not even running IPv6 on their public network. Since most of the real experts that I’ve talked to generally recommend beginning your IPv6 deployment with your public-facing servers, it’s probably safe to assume that they’re not running IPv6 internally either. That doesn’t make me feel very confident about their services, what about you?

And yet, at the same time, evilrouters.net has been accessible over IPv6 since last year.

For spamming me, BT, I sentence you to 40 lashes with my clue-by-four.

Now, if you’re interested in IPv6 advice from guys who really know what they’re talking about, check out Ivan Pepelnjak’s IPv6 webinars and Brandon Carroll’s IPv6 video tutorials.

Note: I absolutely hate vendors cold calls and unsolicited spam and the sales and marketing people behind them (and, yes, I absolutely do keep a “do not ever buy from” list). While you may think that I’ve written this article just to be or because I am an asshole, rest assured that it isn’t true! I used to think I was an asshole too, but Mrs. Y informed me at Net Field Day 3 “you’re not really an asshole” and, although most of my ex-girlfriends would disagree, I’m not going to argue with her. If you’re smart, you won’t either.

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