The Internet is still alive and kicking even though the world has run out of IP addresses. There was some craze about this some time ago but it has somehow died off again. That does not mean that the situation is improving by any means. Quite the contrary: many companies use trickery to work with the IPv4 address pool and it is only a matter of time before the majority of Internet users are using IPv6.
You do not have a lot of control over the process though as a user, despite making sure that your operating system and Internet Service Provider switch you to IPv6 in time or provide you with alternatives so that you do not run into any connection issues.
SixOrNot has been primarily been designed to check if the sites and servers you are connecting to support IPv6. This in itself may be useful to find out if your favorite websites, or your own, do support the Internet Protocol.
That's however not the only feature of the extension, but more about that later.
First thing you need to do after installing it in Firefox and restarting the browser is to either open its options to enable its address bar icon, or open the customize menu of the browser and move the icon manually to a toolbar of your choosing.
The easiest way to do the latter is to tap on Alt to bring up the old menu bar, and select View > Toolbars > Customize from the options to do so.
The icon itself acts as an indicator right away. If displays either a 4, a 6, or 46 as its label indicating whether the website in question supports IPv4 or IPv6 only, or both protocols.
When you click on the icon you get a detailed listing of all connections both as domain names if available and as IP addresses. The IP address will highlight the IPv4 or IPv6 address so that you know which addresses the domain can be reached under.
A click on an IP address here copies it directly to the clipboard which can be useful if you want to keep it for record keeping, add it to your firewall or other security software, or disable or enable it in an ad blocker or other privacy related program.
The extension highlights all connections that are made when you connect to the site in question, which can be quite useful for several purposes. First, you can see what kind of connections are being made. Is it only connecting to legit servers or are connections being made to servers of questionable origin.
Here you find the 2o7.net connection that is being made when you are connecting to PayPal for example listed. While that is being harmless, it helps you spot connections that do not look legit so that you can investigate them before you type in account information or other data.
The plus numbers behind select addresses indicates that there are more IP addresses, with the number indicating how many more. A click on the number displays them all in the interface.
If a site or server is supporting both IPv4 and IPv6, both addresses are highlighted here so that you know that it is supported.
What is interesting is that the extension does not use external services to look up the information. It is also capable of determining local IP addresses besides resolving remote ones, so that you can also make use of it in your development environment.
If you need information about a site's or server's IPv6 connectivity, then you can use SixOrNot for that purpose. Even if this is only of slight interest to you, it may prove useful as it highlights all connections the browser makes.Advertisement
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.