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FreeBSD includes the <link xlink:href="http://www.kame.net/">http://www.kame.net/</link> <acronym>IPv6</acronym> reference implementation and comes with everything needed to use <acronym>IPv6</acronym>. This section focuses on getting <acronym>IPv6</acronym> configured and running.
Background on <acronym>IPv6</acronym> Addresses
There are three different types of <acronym>IPv6</acronym> addresses:
Unicast
A packet sent to a unicast address arrives at the interface belonging to the address.
Anycast
These addresses are syntactically indistinguishable from unicast addresses but they address a group of interfaces. The packet destined for an anycast address will arrive at the nearest router interface. Anycast addresses are only used by routers.
Multicast
These addresses identify a group of interfaces. A packet destined for a multicast address will arrive at all interfaces belonging to the multicast group. The <acronym>IPv4</acronym> broadcast address, usually <systemitem class="ipaddress">xxx.xxx.xxx.255</systemitem>, is expressed by multicast addresses in <acronym>IPv6</acronym>.
When reading an <acronym>IPv6</acronym> address, the canonical form is represented as <systemitem>x:x:x:x:x:x:x:x</systemitem>, where each <literal>x</literal> represents a 16 bit hex value. An example is <systemitem>FEBC:A574:382B:23C1:AA49:4592:4EFE:9982</systemitem>.
Often, an address will have long substrings of all zeros. A <literal>::</literal> (double colon) can be used to replace one substring per address. Also, up to three leading <literal>0</literal>s per hex value can be omitted. For example, <systemitem>fe80::1</systemitem> corresponds to the canonical form <systemitem>fe80:0000:0000:0000:0000:0000:0000:0001</systemitem>.
A third form is to write the last 32 bits using the well known <acronym>IPv4</acronym> notation. For example, <systemitem>2002::10.0.0.1</systemitem> corresponds to the hexadecimal canonical representation <systemitem>2002:0000:0000:0000:0000:0000:0a00:0001</systemitem>, which in turn is equivalent to <systemitem>2002::a00:1</systemitem>.
To view a FreeBSD system's <acronym>IPv6 </acronym> address, use <citerefentry><refentrytitle>ifconfig</refentrytitle><manvolnum>8</manvolnum></citerefentry>:
<prompt>#</prompt> <userinput>ifconfig</userinput>
rl0: flags=8943&lt;UP,BROADCAST,RUNNING,PROMISC,SIMPLEX,MULTICAST&gt; mtu 1500
inet 10.0.0.10 netmask 0xffffff00 broadcast 10.0.0.255
inet6 fe80::200:21ff:fe03:8e1%rl0 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x1
ether 00:00:21:03:08:e1
media: Ethernet autoselect (100baseTX )
status: active
In this example, the <filename>rl0</filename> interface is using <systemitem>fe80::200:21ff:fe03:8e1%rl0</systemitem>, an auto-configured link-local address which was automatically generated from the <acronym>MAC</acronym> address.
Some <acronym>IPv6</acronym> addresses are reserved. A summary of these reserved addresses is seen in <xref linkend="reservedip6"/>:
Reserved <acronym>IPv6</acronym> Addresses
<acronym>IPv6</acronym> address
Prefixlength (Bits)
<systemitem>::</systemitem>
128 bits
unspecified
Equivalent to <systemitem class="ipaddress">0.0.0.0</systemitem> in <acronym>IPv4</acronym>.
<systemitem>::1</systemitem>
loopback address
Equivalent to <systemitem class="ipaddress">127.0.0.1</systemitem> in <acronym>IPv4</acronym>.
<systemitem>::00:xx:xx:xx:xx</systemitem>
96 bits
embedded <acronym>IPv4</acronym>
The lower 32 bits are the compatible <acronym>IPv4</acronym> address.

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Source string comment
(itstool) path: sect2/para
Flags
read-only
Source string location
book.translate.xml:65535
String age
a year ago
Source string age
a year ago
Translation file
books/handbook.pot, string 11195