IPV6 Tunnel Broker Comparison and Review

Hello everyone, this isn’t the forewaited big change, but i thought it was worth posting a quick drill down review of
the (in my opinion) 4 best tunnel broker services out there. In this review i’ll be covering UKERNA, Hurricane Electric, Sixxs & Freenet6/Go6.
At the end you’ll see my recommendation and why. All of the tunnel brokers have been tested for at least 2 weeks by myself, hope it helps you make your choice 🙂

UKERNA
If you’re a member of the UK Higher Education Community (a university student) then you can sign up to UKERNA or the University of Southhampton’s Broker service (essentially both the same) It uses the TSP protocol for connectivity, therefor supports NAT traversal (using ipv6 behind a firewall/router without hassle).

However the backend TSP server hasn’t been updated in a while so you have to use an old version of gateway6 client / tsp client for UKERNA
(although i’ve been informed that Ja.net are looking into this). Also on UKERNA Reverse DNS delegation is broken for a long time now.
This website is powered by UKERNA, as its very fast for me as im in the UK and i can get direct support, however if you want to play around
more with ipv6, try out DNS, ease of use, then i would skip UKERNA and move on to another service :).

Protocol: TSP
POPs: 1 (UK)
Rating: 7/10

HE.NET
Hurricane Electric are a large ISP providing everything from transit to dedicated servers for years already. I have been using a HE.NET tunnel
for a long time now, and i must say, it is by far, way ahead of all the competition. Although you cannot NAT traverse (as he.net uses 6in4), tunnels from this broker seem to be extremely stable with barely any down time, the support email contacts are always quick to respond and helpful and you can also get a he.net ipv6 certification at their website.

If you’re an experienced ipv6 user with knowledge of networking and routers, then he.net is definately the one to choose, however if your a beginner simply wanting to test ipv6 connectivity, then move on to a TSP based service.

Protocol: 6in4
POPs: Lots (Europe/Asia/America/Australia)
Rating: 8/10

SIXXS
Well, i don’t want to be too biased about this one, Sixxs are a good broker and have pops in many locations, however their service is based
upon a points system, where in order to request new tunnels / reverse dns delegation / support, you have to earn “loyalty style” points
based upon the uptime of your tunnel and other things. Also if you have ever signed up for sixxs in the past and have lost your login, don’t bother signing up again. Sixxs seem to be very strict but also seem to be a very reliable good broker to use. I would only recommend them however if you are certain of your requirements. Enjoy the game!

Protocol: 6in4/TEREDO
POPs: Lots (Europe/Asia/America/Australia)
Rating: 6/10

FREENET6
This broker has also been around for quite a while now, and i believe are partnered with Hexago (who produce the TSP hardware/software).
They have a round robin POP and localised ones also. I’m currently using Freenet6 to power ipv6 on my LAN, mixed results so far, stability
isn’t great at times but generally speaking the tunnel is fast and can outperform my UKERNA one. Best for beginners, advanced users, try something else.

Protocol: TSP
POPs: 3 (Amsterdam/Montreal/Roundrobin)
Rating: 6/10

After looking at the above tunnel brokers, my personal favourite is going to have to be Hurricane Electric, i’ve received the best support
from them, their services are outstanding, and the performance, reliability and statistics provided make it stand out above the competition.
There are “IPV6 tunnel broker” adverts dotted around this site also which point to good brokers, so i hope i’ve helped you make your decision.
All the brokers are worth trying, but it really depends on what you want out of your implementation. Also there are many more brokers available worldwide than listed here.

 

 

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