Foundry Networks earlier this week updated its switches and routers with hardware to forward IPv6 packets at wire speed and pack more Gigabit Ethernet over copper into a smaller space.Foundry updated its high end with modules for the NetIron 40G for service providers and the BigIron MG8 for enterprise firms. The company claims the modules can move both IPv4 and IPv6 packets at wire speed over the devices, which can run 10 Gigabit Ethernet.The BigIron MG8 module supports up to 256,000 IPv4 routes or 64,000 IPv6 routes, and up to 1 million BGP routes. The NetIron 40G module supports twice that.Foundry says the IPv6 modules allow for coexistence with IPv4, using industry-standard techniques such as dual-stack operation and 6to4 tunneling. Foundry has supported IPv6 at slower speeds in other NetIron equipment, as well as in FastIron Edge switches.IPv6 was designed to scale up the number of available addresses as the number of Internet-connected devices increases. It also provides for security and multicast. Foundry notes that the U.S. Department of Defense has mandated that all government networks move to IPv6 by 2008.The company plans to demonstrate the new support at next week\u2019s NetWorld+Interop, with 32 ports of 10 Gigabit Ethernet running IPv6 at 480 million packets per second.Foundry also announced BigIron MG8 modules with 60 ports of copper-based Gigabit Ethernet. This allows one of these chassis to contain as many as 480 of these ports, adding up to 1,440 Gigabit Ethernet ports in a seven-foot rack, the company says.The NetIron 40G IPv4\/IPv6 modules range from $38,500 to $55,000 and are expected to be available this month. The BigIron MG8 IPv4\/IPv6 modules range from $35,000 to $50,000 and are expected to ship in July.