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Configuring and Troubleshooting IPv6 in Windows Vista (part 1) - Displaying IPv6 Address Settings

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While IPv6 is designed to allow IPv6-enabled nodes such as Windows Vista computers to automatically configure their interfaces with link-local addresses, these autoconfigured addresses are not registered in DNS servers and can be used only for communicating with other nodes on the local link. Alternatively, by using a DHCPv6 server, you can automatically assign global, site-local, or unique local IPv6 addresses to IPv6-enabled interfaces of link-attached nodes. This is the preferred scenario for end-to-end IPv6 connectivity in enterprises that have a native IPv6-only network infrastructure.

However, you can also use two methods to configure IPv6 settings manually on Windows Vista computers:

  • Using the new IPv6 user interface

  • Using the netsh interface ipv6 command context

In addition, it is important to understand the different kinds of IPv6 addresses assigned to Windows Vista computers so that you can troubleshoot IPv6 connectivity when problems arise.

Displaying IPv6 Address Settings

To display the IPv4 and IPv6 address configuration of the local computer, open a command prompt window and type ipconfig /all at a command prompt. The following is an example of the information displayed by running this command on a domain-joined Windows Vista computer with a single LAN network adapter, no IPv6 routers on the attached subnet, and no other configured network connections:

Windows IP Configuration

Host Name . . . . . . . . . . . . : KBERG-PC
Primary Dns Suffix . . . . . . . : contoso.com
Node Type . . . . . . . . . . . . : Hybrid
IP Routing Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
WINS Proxy Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
DNS Suffix Search List. . . . . . : contoso.com

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Realtek RTL8139/810x Family Fast Ethernet NIC
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-13-D4-C2-50-F5
DHCP Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
Link-local IPv6 Address . . . . . : fe80::3530:6107:45a2:a92c%8(Preferred)
IPv4 Address. . . . . . . . . . . : 172.16.11.13(Preferred)
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0
Lease Obtained. . . . . . . . . . : Sunday, October 29, 2006 9:38:02 AM
Lease Expires . . . . . . . . . . : Wednesday, November 08, 2006 12:38:00 PM
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 172.16.11.1
DHCP Server . . . . . . . . . . . : 172.16.11.32
DHCPv6 IAID . . . . . . . . . . . : 201331668
DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 172.16.11.32
NetBIOS over Tcpip. . . . . . . . : Enabled

Tunnel adapter Local Area Connection* 6:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : isatap.{1F1E1761-FF83-4866-AE6C-9FCEE1E49099}
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-00-00-00-00-00-00-E0
DHCP Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : No
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
Link-local IPv6 Address . . . . . : fe80::5efe:172.16.11.13%9(Preferred)
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . :
DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 172.16.11.32
NetBIOS over Tcpip. . . . . . . . : Disabled

Tunnel adapter Local Area Connection* 7:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Teredo Tunneling Pseudo-Interface
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 02-00-54-55-4E-01
DHCP Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : No
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
IPv6 Address. . . . . . . . . . . : 2001:0:4136:e37c:4e8:3426:53ef:f4f2(Preferred)
Link-local IPv6 Address . . . . . : fe80::4e8:3426:53ef:f4f2%10(Preferred)
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : ::
NetBIOS over Tcpip. . . . . . . . : Disabled



The preceding command output displays three interfaces on this computer:

  • Local Area Connection (the installed network adapter)

  • Local Area Connection* 6 (a tunneling interface for ISATAP)

  • Local Area Connection* 7 (a tunneling interface for Teredo)

The Local Area Connection interface is an Ethernet network adapter and has both an IPv4 address (172.16.11.13) assigned by DHCP and a link-local IPv6 address (fe80::3530:6107:45a2:a92c) that has been automatically assigned using IPv6 address autoconfiguration. (You can recognize the link-local address by its address prefix, FE80::/64.)

The “%8” appended to this address is the zone ID (or scope ID) that indicates which connected portion of the network the computer resides on. This zone ID corresponds with the interface index for the Local Area Connection interface. To view a list of interface indexes on a computer, type netsh interface ipv6 show interface at a command prompt. For the preceding example computer, the output will be:

Idx  Met   MTU   State        Name
--- --- ----- ----------- -------------------
1 50 4294967295 connected Loopback Pseudo-Interface 1
9 25 1280 connected Local Area Connection* 6
10 10 1280 connected Local Area Connection* 7
8 20 1500 connected Local Area Connection

The Idx column indicates the interface index. The zone ID might be needed when testing network connectivity with this computer from other computers using the ping and tracert commands.

The state of the link-local address assigned to the LAN connection is Preferred, which indicates a valid IPv6 address you can use to send and receive unicast IPv6 traffic.

The ISATAP tunneling interface has an autoconfigured link-local address of fe80::5efe:172.16.11.13. The format for an ISATAP address is:

  • The first 64 bits are a unicast prefix that can be a link-local, global, site-local, or unique local unicast IPv6 address prefix. This example uses the link-local address prefix because no ISATAP router is present on the network. This means that the resulting ISATAP address can be used only for communicating with other ISATAP hosts on the IPv4 network, and this ISATAP address is not registered in DNS servers.

  • The next 32 bits are usually 0:5EFE in an ISATAP address. (RFC 4214 also allows 100:5EFE, 200:5EFE, and 300:5EFE in this portion of an ISATAP address.)

  • The final 32 bits consist of the 32-bit IPv4 address of the host in dotted-decimal form (172.16.11.13 in this example).

The Teredo tunneling pseudo-interface displays the IPv6 address of the Teredo client as 2001:0:4136:e37c:4e8:3426:53ef:f4f2. The format for a Teredo client address is:
  • The first 32 bits are always the Teredo prefix, which is 2001::/32.

  • The next 32 bits contain the public IPv4 address of the Teredo server that helped in the configuration of this Teredo address (here 4136:E37C hexadecimal, which converts to 65.54.227.124 in dotted-decimal format). By default, the Teredo client in Windows Vista and Windows Server Code Name “Longhorn” automatically tries to determine the IPv4 addresses of Teredo servers by resolving the name teredo.ipv6.microsoft.com.

  • The next 16 bits are reserved for various Teredo flags.

  • The next 16 bits contain an obscured version of the external UDP port number that corresponds to all Teredo traffic for this Teredo client. (The external UDP port number is obscured XORing it with 0xFFFF, and in this example 0x3426 XOR 0xFFFF = 0xCBD9 or decimal 52185, meaning UDP port 52185.)

  • The final 32 bits contains an obscured version of the external IPv4 address that corresponds to all Teredo traffic for this Teredo client. (The external IPv4 address is obscured XORing it with 0xFFFF FFFF, and in this example 0x53EF F4F2 XOR 0xFFFF FFFF = 0xAC10 0B0D or dotted-decimal 172.16.11.13.)


Another way to display the IPv6 settings on a Windows Vista computer is to type the netsh interface ipv6 show address command. The result for the same computer as in the preceding example are:

Interface 1: Loopback Pseudo-Interface 1

Addr Type DAD State Valid Life Pref. Life Address
--------- ----------- ---------- ---------- ------------------------
Other Preferred infinite infinite ::1

Interface 9: Local Area Connection* 6

Addr Type DAD State Valid Life Pref. Life Address
--------- ----------- ---------- ---------- ------------------------
Other Preferred infinite infinite fe80::5efe:172.16.11.13%9

Interface 10: Local Area Connection* 7

Addr Type DAD State Valid Life Pref. Life Address
--------- ----------- ---------- ---------- ------------------------
Public Preferred infinite infinite 2001:0:4136:e37c:1071:3426:31d2:bfce
Other Preferred infinite infinite fe80::1071:3426:31d2:bfce%10

Interface 8: Local Area Connection

Addr Type DAD State Valid Life Pref. Life Address
--------- ----------- ---------- ---------- ------------------------
Other Preferred infinite infinite fe80::3530:6107:45a2:a92c%8



Note

An advantage of displaying IPv6 address settings using netsh interface ipv6 show address command instead of ipconfig is that you can execute netsh.exe commands remotely against a targeted computer by using the –r RemoteComputerName option.


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