Published On: October 21ˢᵗ, 2021 08:40

IP Addressing Services Configuration Guide, Cisco IOS XE Amsterdam 17.3.x (Catalyst 9500 Switches)


This section provides information about IP Addressing Services.

Understanding IPv6

IPv4 users can move to IPv6 and receive services such as end-to-end security, quality of service (QoS), and globally unique addresses. The IPv6 address space reduces the need for private addresses and Network Address Translation (NAT) processing by border routers at network edges.

For information about how Cisco Systems implements IPv6, go to:

For information about IPv6 and other features in this chapter

  • See the Cisco IOS IPv6 Configuration Library.

  • Use the Search field on to locate the Cisco IOS software documentation. For example, if you want information about static routes, you can enter Implementing Static Routes for IPv6 in the search field to learn about static routes.

IPv6 Addresses

The switch supports only IPv6 unicast addresses. It does not support site-local unicast addresses, or anycast addresses.

The IPv6 128-bit addresses are represented as a series of eight 16-bit hexadecimal fields separated by colons in the format: n:n:n:n:n:n:n:n. This is an example of an IPv6 address:


For easier implementation, leading zeros in each field are optional. This is the same address without leading zeros:


You can also use two colons (::) to represent successive hexadecimal fields of zeros, but you can use this short version only once in each address:


For more information about IPv6 address formats, address types, and the IPv6 packet header, see the of Cisco IOS IPv6 Configuration Library on

  • IPv6 Address Formats

  • IPv6 Address Type: Multicast

  • IPv6 Address Output Display

  • Simplified IPv6 Packet Header

128-Bit Wide Unicast Addresses

The switch supports aggregatable global unicast addresses and link-local unicast addresses. It does not support site-local unicast addresses.

  • Aggregatable global unicast addresses are IPv6 addresses from the aggregatable global unicast prefix. The address structure enables strict aggregation of routing prefixes and limits the number of routing table entries in the global routing table. These addresses are used on links that are aggregated through organizations and eventually to the Internet service provider.

    These addresses are defined by a global routing prefix, a subnet ID, and an interface ID. Current global unicast address allocation uses the range of addresses that start with binary value 001 (2000::/3). Addresses with a prefix of 2000::/3(001) through E000::/3(111) must have 64-bit interface identifiers in the extended unique identifier (EUI)-64 format.

  • Link local unicast addresses can be automatically configured on any interface by using the link-local prefix FE80::/10(1111 1110 10) and the interface identifier in the modified EUI format. Link-local addresses are used in the neighbor discovery protocol (NDP) and the stateless autoconfiguration process. Nodes on a local link use link-local addresses and do not require globally unique addresses to communicate. IPv6 routers do not forward packets with link-local source or destination addresses to other links.

For more information, see the section about IPv6 unicast addresses in the “Implementing IPv6 Addressing and Basic Connectivity” chapter in the Cisco IOS IPv6 Configuration Library on

DNS for IPv6

IPv6 supports Domain Name System (DNS) record types in the DNS name-to-address and address-to-name lookup processes. The DNS AAAA resource record types support IPv6 addresses and are equivalent to an A address record in IPv4. The switch supports DNS resolution for IPv4 and IPv6.

IPv6 Stateless Autoconfiguration and Duplicate Address Detection

The switch uses stateless autoconfiguration to manage link, subnet, and site addressing changes, such as management of host and mobile IP addresses. A host autonomously configures its own link-local address, and booting nodes send router solicitations to request router advertisements for configuring interfaces.

Beginning from Cisco IOS XE Gibraltar 16.11.1, an autoconfigured IPv6 address will contain interface identifiers that are not part of the reserved interface identifiers range specified in RFC5453.

For more information about autoconfiguration and duplicate address detection, see the “Implementing IPv6 Addressing and Basic Connectivity” chapter of Cisco IOS IPv6 Configuration Library on

IPv6 Applications

The switch has IPv6 support for these applications:

  • Ping, traceroute, Telnet, and TFTP

  • FTP (This is supported only on Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches - High Performance)

  • Secure Shell (SSH) over an IPv6 transport

  • HTTP server access over IPv6 transport

  • DNS resolver for AAAA over IPv4 transport

  • Cisco Discovery Protocol (CDP) support for IPv6 addresses

For more information about managing these applications, see the Cisco IOS IPv6 Configuration Library on

DHCP for IPv6 Address Assignment

DHCPv6 enables DHCP servers to pass configuration parameters, such as IPv6 network addresses, to IPv6 clients. The address assignment feature manages non-duplicate address assignment in the correct prefix based on the network where the host is connected. Assigned addresses can be from one or multiple prefix pools. Additional options, such as default domain and DNS name-server address, can be passed back to the client. Address pools can be assigned for use on a specific interface, on multiple interfaces, or the server can automatically find the appropriate pool.

For configuring DHCP for IPv6, see the Configuring DHCP for IPv6 Address Assignment section.

For more information about configuring the DHCPv6 client, server, or relay agent functions, see the Cisco IOS IPv6 Configuration Library on

HTTP(S) Over IPv6

The HTTP client sends requests to both IPv4 and IPv6 HTTP servers, which respond to requests from both IPv4 and IPv6 HTTP clients. URLs with literal IPv6 addresses must be specified in hexadecimal using 16-bit values between colons.

The accept socket call chooses an IPv4 or IPv6 address family. The accept socket is either an IPv4 or IPv6 socket. The listening socket continues to listen for both IPv4 and IPv6 signals that indicate a connection. The IPv6 listening socket is bound to an IPv6 wildcard address.

The underlying TCP/IP stack supports a dual-stack environment. HTTP relies on the TCP/IP stack and the sockets for processing network-layer interactions.

Basic network connectivity (ping ) must exist between the client and the server hosts before HTTP connections can be made.

For more information, see the “Managing Cisco IOS Applications over IPv6” chapter in the Cisco IOS IPv6 Configuration Library on