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I have several dedicated servers and VPS servers, and some of those are at companies that have provided me with native IPv6 blocks (in addition to the IPv4 IP addresses).

Does it currently make sense to point an AAAA record to an IPv6 address on my server, in addition to the A record pointing to the IPv4 address? This would be for (for example) the www subdomain. (the networking and web server software would be set up on the server to respond appropriately).

A while ago I read that a small percentage of users (1 in a thousand?) would have slow or no access if a subdomain had both A and AAAA records because their networking software asked for one and got the other. Is that still the case, will adding an AAAA record inconvenience some users, or is the percentage already smaller and falling?

In other words, is now the time to get around to adding native IPv6 support for a busy website aimed at the general public, or is it still too early?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

It's tough to get some good stats for this but if you look at this article "When does it cause network problems?" it would have been an advantage if there was a proper AAAA response.

On this list of customer problems that could occurr however there is one router listed that indeed has problems when both A and AAAA are set up. But what's the impact?

You'll find some examples and interviews with the big players like Amazon, Microsoft, Google that offer ipv6 for most or all of their sites. You could even set up a different domain for some kind of test project, inform about ipv6 and forward on demand to the real project to get some stats.

I would recommend you start with it. The market is more in a "it's more to late than to early to adopt" situation, so why wait.

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Thanks for that reference. Still a lot of problems, but most of them seem to have work-arounds. I see that Google, Yahoo, Facebook now respond with AAAA records (try "host www.google.com" on Linux), although Amazon, Ebay. Paypal, Twitter and most news sources don't (mainly because they use CDN's). I think most English-language users would notice if they couldn't reach Google, Yahoo or Facebook, so they hopefully they should have done the work-arounds by now. I'll move forward with my IPv6 setup (I have networking and DNS ready, just a few changes to Apache - and a firewall - should do it). –  Rob Hoare Oct 12 '12 at 22:55
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To follow up: one of my medium size sites has been running dual-stack for a few days now (both IPv6 and IPv4 pointing to the same server). No apparent affect on traffic, and the Apache logs are showing a handful of accesses from IPv6 addresses. Apache worked without changes (already listens to all addresses). My ufw firewall needed the rules entered again, which then created the IPv6 rules. I'll make the rest of my sites dual-stack in the coming weeks (for those on the same server it's just a case of adding the DNS). –  Rob Hoare Oct 17 '12 at 22:50
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Another followup for anybody reading this later. I added IPv6 to all my active sites fine. BUT, do keep careful records of your IP allocations (lot more of them now) and try to automate any DNS updates (I'm going to start using the API of my DNS provider). Tonight I migrated a server from New York to California (weather related...) and having to do a bunch of IPv6 changes as well as the IPv4 does mean there's more to update (and go wrong). Only three domains on that server so it could have been a lot worse, but with one IPv6 per host plus an IPv4 it's three times as much work to update DNS! –  Rob Hoare Oct 30 '12 at 8:25
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