DNS platform supports IPv6, creates revenue streams for carriers

Xerocole, a broadband Domain Name System (DNS) company, on Wednesday announced an all-in-one DNS management system that enables broadband network operators to support IPv6 and Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC), monetize non-existent domain errors, and deliver personalized services to subscribers.



Xerocole, a broadband Domain Name System (DNS) company, on Wednesday announced an all-in-one DNS management system that enables broadband network operators to support IPv6 and Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC), monetize non-existent domain errors, and deliver personalized services to subscribers.


“IPv6 and DNSSEC are two new things that are requiring all the customers on the internet to make changes to their infrastructure,” says Robert Fleischman, CTO  Xerocole (Boulder, Colo., USA). “They can’t use what they are doing to support these new features that are being demanded on the change and scale of the internet.”


The new platform, DNS WorX, provides a gateway from IPv4-based to IPv6-based DNS that performs forward and reverse name lookups at wire speed.


When using IPv4, usually what happens is when you connect to the internet the machine does an exchange between itself and the service provider, and the service provider hands you one of the many IP addresses that they have, and that’s how you get your IP address. 


The service provider has also set up a name for your machine in its DNS, and that’s mapped to your IP address, and the reverse is also true, your IP address is mapped to that name, says Fleischman.  The mapping of the IP address to the name is important because when you go to websites it’s used as a rudimentary security check. 


When moving IPv6, the problem is the size of the address space goes from 32 bits to 128 bits, and the way you get an IP address changes, according to Fleischman.  The service provider no longer just hands you an IP address, instead it is an exchange, meaning your cable modem or Ethernet card or some hardware in your phone gives your carrier some bits of information. Basically, there is information in your device that they give to your carrier.  The carrier takes that information and combines it with the block of IP addresses that they are assigned, puts it together and gives you an IP address back. 


“The fundamental difference is your carrier really has no idea what your IP address is going to be until you talk to them.  When you talk to them you give them up to 48 bits, which is trillions and trillions of possibilities,” says Fleischman.  “There is no way for the carrier to know in advance what IP address any of its customers are going to have because they don’t know what the bits are you are giving them.  So now you have taken a situation that used to be static and make it dynamic.”


Therefore, since the carrier doesn’t know your IP address in advance, the process of mapping an IP address to a name in the DNS has to change.


According to Xerocole , IPv6 will flood carrier networks with a massive increase in IP address lookups. DNS WorX can manage IPV6 reverse mapping of IP addresses to matching URLs.


Another capability of the DNS platform is Search Monetization, which is an error redirect service.


According to Frank Bergen, CEO of Xerocole, this part of the DSN platform is also a revenue driver.  For example, say you type in a domain name that doesn’t exist, as in “golfballs.cmo” instead of “golftballs.com.”   


“Instead of returning a site not found code, we have a sub syndicated relationship with Yahoo! that lets the ISP put their brand on a results page that gives them the natural search and sponsored listings, and when someone clicks on the sponsored listings, the money flows from Yahoo! as a revenue share,” says Bergen. 


According to Bergen, this search guide helps the user find what they may be looking for, but at the same time produces a revenue stream.


“When you consider the number of those errors in a network per year, it adds up to a couple of dollars per subscriber per year on average, which provides an economical rational to somebody,” says Bergen.


In addition, Xerocole’s platform also comes with a User Aware Services, which uses a patented subscriber access mapping system that can permanently attach a user’s preferences (like opt-in/opt-out) to their account.  This means that different people can have different preferences without ever having to opt-in or out more than once.


The platform is priced on a subscription basis per subscriber per year. When fully deployed, DNS WorX becomes a net revenue generator for the carrier at approximately $1 per subscriber per year, says Xerocole .


According to Xerocole , this platform has been tested by carriers in labs, who have come back with suggestions to Xerocole to make it better.  According to Wyatt, when IPv6 is finally deployed, higher level problems are bound to present itself.


“Supporting IPv6 in a kind of check box manner doesn’t mean you solve all these higher level problems that happen when you try to deploy IPv6,” says Fleischman.  “It’s kind of like the idea of saying you have four-wheel drive, but when you go up the hill it just doesn’t work.  There is a lot more complexity in supporting IPv6.”