How to Configure IPv6 on Windows Server 2008 R2

2/15/2011 9:16:44 AM
Many of the tasks for configuring IPv6 are exactly the same as those for IPv4 addresses, albeit with longer addresses to type. This includes manually setting IP addressing, creating DHCP scopes, and creating DNS host records. The steps in this section walk through some of the administrator tasks for configuring IPv6 on Windows Server 2008 R2.

Manually Setting the IPv6 Address

On many occasions, it is necessary to set the IP addresses manually. This is normally the case for servers, routers, and other devices that have static IP addresses.

To set the IPv6 addressing of a Windows Server 2008 R2 server, execute the following steps:

Launch Server Manager.

Click on View Network Connections from the options in the left pane of the window.

Right-click on the desired Local Area Connection, and select Properties.

Click Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6), and select Properties. If the item is not enabled, check the box first.

Click the Use the Following IPv6 Address option button.

In the IPv6 Address field, type in Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::2, and then press Tab. Notice that the Subnet Prefix Length field auto-populates with “64.” Leave that in place and press Tab to move to the Default Gateway input field.

Enter Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::1 for the default gateway.

Press Tab again to move to the Use the Following DNS Server Address field. Then press Tab to move to the Preferred DNS Server input field. For this example, use the IPv6 address for this server. In the Preferred DNS Server field, type in the sample IPv6 address Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::2 and leave the Alternate DNS Server field blank. The settings should match those shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1. IPv6 settings.

Click OK to close the IPv6 Properties window. Click Close to close the Local Area Connection Properties window.


The IPv6 prefix Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::/64 for the address Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::2 is a ULA—that is, a private non-globally routable address.

The DNS server also needs to have a reverse lookup zone created to allow computers to register their IPv6 addresses. This is separate from the IPv4 reverse lookup zone created earlier in the article, although it serves the same purpose. To create the IPv6 reverse lookup zone, perform the following steps:

Launch Server Manager on the DNS server.

Expand the Roles node, DNS Server node, DNS node, and the server node, and select the Reverse Lookup Zones node.

Right-click the Reverse Lookup Zones node and select New Zone.

Click Next at the Welcome screen.

Ensure that Primary Zone and Store the Zone in Active Directory are selected, and then click Next.

Select to replicate to all domain controllers in the forest, and then click Next.

Select the IPv6 Reverse Lookup Zone option and click Next.

Enter FC00:1234:5678:9abc::/64 for the IPv6 address prefix. The reverse lookup zone name will be created automatically. Click Next.

Allow only secure updates and click Next.

Click Finish to complete the task.

Setting Up a DHCPv6 Server on Windows Server 2008 R2

IPv6 is installed and enabled by default in Windows Server 2008 R2, and native IPv6 functionality is already included into Windows Server 2008 R2 DHCP by way of DHCPv6.

In this example, we assume that the Windows Server 2008 R2 server is assigned with the IPv6 address from the previous example: Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::2. To set up the DHCP role, execute the following steps:

Launch Server Manager and click the Add Roles link.

Read the Before You Begin page and ensure that you have followed the bulleted items. Click Next if you are ready to continue.

On the Server Roles page, click the check box to enter a check mark next to DHCP Server (as shown in Figure 2), and click Next.

Figure 2. Selecting the DHCP server role.

A warning message might appear, asking for confirmation to “Install DHCP Server Without a Static IP Address.” For this example, we have not assigned a static IPv4 address. The wizard is detecting this, and this can be ignored during this example. If this message appears, click Install DHCP Server Anyway (Not Recommended).

Be sure to take the time to read the “Introduction to DHCP Server,” and click Next when you are ready to continue.

The next three sections for IPv4—IPv4 DNS Settings, IPv4 WINS Settings, and DHCP Scopes—can be bypassed by clicking Next.

On the DHCPv6 Stateless Mode page, two options are available. For the Windows Server 2008 R2 server to issue IPv6 addresses, select Disable DHCPv6 Stateless Mode for This Server, and click Next.

On the DHCP Server Authorization page, specify the account that will be used to authorize this DHCP server on the network, and click Next.

On the Confirmation page, review the settings, and click Install when you are ready to continue.

It is important to not disrupt the installation progress, and allow the installation to complete.

Confirm the installation on the Results page, and click Close.

The DHCPv6 server is set up, but an IPv6 scope still needs to be configured for the server to begin assigning addresses.

Setting Up a DHCPv6 Scope on Windows Server 2008 R2

A separate scope is needed to assign IPv6 addresses in DHCP. The following steps show the administrator how to configure a DHCPv6 scope in Windows Server 2008 R2:

Launch Server Manager, expand Roles, and then select DHCP Server.

In the DHCP window, expand the server name, and then click IPv6.

Right-click on IPv6, and click on New Scope. This opens a New Scope Wizard window. Click Next to continue.

For this example, name the scope “Test IPv6 Scope,” leave the Description field blank, and click Next to continue.

Assuming that the server’s IPv6 address is still Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::2 from the previous example, enter in a prefix of Fc00:1234:5678:9abc::, leave the Preference setting at the default setting of 0, and click Next.

On the Add Exclusions page, enter :0000 for the start and :ffff for the end. Exclusions are added to avoid a potential IP address conflict (for example, the server issuing its own address).

Click the Add button, and click Next to continue. See Figure 3 for more detail.

Figure 3. Adding exclusions.

Review the default settings, and click Next on the Scope Lease page.

Confirm the settings, ensure that the Yes option button under Activate Scope Now is selected, and then click Finish.

Now the DHCP server will begin to assign IPv6 addresses from the scope.

Adding an IPv6 Host Record in Windows Server 2008 R2 DNS

Configuring IPv6 host records in DNS is very similar to configuring IPv4 records. When configuring IPv6 records in Windows Server 2008 R2 DNS, it is possible to provide the abbreviated IPv6 addressing, meaning that you are able to use double “::”. The following steps walk through configuring an AAAA host record for IPv6:

Launch the Server Manager, expand the Roles, expand DNS Server, expand DNS, and select the DNS server name.

Expand the server, expand Forward Lookup Zones, and select the zone.

Right-click on the zone, and select New Host (A or AAAA). See Figure 4 for more detail.

Figure 4. Adding IPv6 AAAA DNS records.

Type the short name of the host (hostname without the FQDN) and populate the IPv6 address. Ensure that the Create Associated Pointer (PTR) Record check box is checked, and then click Add Host.

Click OK on the The Host Record Was Successfully Created message box. Add additional host records, and click Done when you are finished.

IPv6 host records are displayed as AAAA (quad A) records in DNS. Other records associated to an IPv6 address will reflect the full IPv6 address in the Data column.

The new record can be tested by pinging the FQDN, as follows:

Launch a command prompt.

Enter the command ping -6 <fqdn> where <fqdn> is the host name.

The command should return a series of four pings to the IPv6 address.


The ping command defaults to IPv4, so a ping to a hostname by default will not let you test the IPv6 address. You can force IPv6 by using the syntax ping -6 <hostname>. You can also force IPv4 by using the syntax ping -4 <hostname>.

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