Minutes of July 2002 Meet: IPv6 and Linux

The July 2002 Bangalore Linux Users Group (BLUG) meet was, oddly enough, held on 2nd August 2002. It started, promptly, at 6:30pm in a crammed basement hall in Hotel Ashraya International. Our esteemed SG Kingsly John inaugurated the proceedings with the usual administrivia.

He started by announcing the theme of the meet: IPv6 and Linux. He also announced a slight change in the schedule: due to an unfortunate choice of restaurants, featured speaker and old time bluggie Atul Chitnis had been laid low by a case of the trots. Fortunately, fellow bearded-one Gopi Garge was available to pinch hit -- IPv6 being a topic that Gopi can (and probably does) talk about in his sleep.

Kingsly went on to announce the annual BLUG bash: the Linux Birthday Party on August 25th. To honor Linux's eleventh birthday, Kingsly said that there would be a special meet at a to-be-notified fancy venue. Following last year's precedent, Linux Bangalore/2002 would be officially launched at the bash. All this was received by the crowd with the BLUG's usual enthusiastic silence. Given the special nature of the meet, Kingsly solicited suggestions for a theme for the meet. Your humble reporter's suggestion that it be "Polishing Off the Grub" was received with much less laughter than he expected -- evidentially many thought it was a good idea.

The first of the technical talks was by the previously unannounced Manu Bhardwaj. It's title was "An Introduction to IPv6". Manu's well researched talk covered the basics of IPv6. He explained what IPv6 is and why it is important. He went on to talk about setting up IPv6, it's interaction with IPv4 and more. The lucidity of his talk can be gauged by the intelligent questions that it raised, including one involved discussion on IPv6 packet length that required Gopi and Kalyan Varma's input to resolve.

Pinch-hitter Gopi was the next to speak. He started by facetiously noting that meet sponsors HP-ISO had finally decided to acknowledge their involvement by putting up a banner. This drew a few laughs from the many in the crowd who knew that HP had previously generously sponsored the past several meets.

At this point, the proceedings were interrupted by SG-emeritus Biju Chacko (ie moi) who had noticed the overflowing nature of the hall. Ninety-odd people had, by this time, squeezed into a hall meant for sixty. After a bit of judicious furniture re-arranging everybody was seated and business continued.

Gopi's talk was titled "Linux and IPv6". The main thrust of the talk was the importance of Linux to IPv6 and visa versa. With witty slides, Gopi talked about how Linux could help drive the deployment of IPv6. Building on this, he spoke about how the community had a part to play in IPv6's growth. Community involvement, he said, would be vital to put IPv6 into the real world where it's visible payoffs would promote it's acceptance. He also mentioned the BLUG special interest group website http://ipv6.linux-bangalore.org and mailing-list.

The final speaker was Kalyan Varma, Security Czar Yahoo!, a designation that drew some sniggers from the old-timers hanging about the rear of the hall. Kalyan's talk was intensely practical. He talked about what is currently available for IPv6 on Linux, what is coming and what is missing. He finished by demonstrating how to IPv6-enable Red Hat Linux 7.3, stressing on the fact that most of it was already built-in. His talk was well received and generated a lot of discussion, including from Zopester JC Kiran and BLUG guru-in-chief Hanish Menon.

Snacks were served after this talk and the meet dissolved into numerous conversations around coffee.


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