IP Address Tutorials

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Your IP is:

What is it

An Internet Protocol address is a numerical label assigned to each device connected to the Internet or a computer network. Basically this is as the address location in the real world. You could use it to find the physical location of the device or user, or to give or deny access to a particular website or network. Many security authentication protocols are based on it, for example the Sender Policy Framework (SPF), which defines the allowed IPs from where some domain could send emails.


Two versions of the Internet Protocol are in common use on the Internet today – IPv4 and IPv6.

An IPv4 address has a size of 32 bits, and usually represented in dot-decimal notation, consisting of four decimal numbers, each ranging from 0 to 255, separated by dots, e.g.,


Due to IPv4 limitations in IPv6, the address size was increased from 32 bits in IPv4 to 128 bits.


Computers not connected to the Internet, which communicate only with each other via TCP/IP, need not have globally unique IP addresses. Today, such private networks are widely used and typically connect to the Internet with network address translation (NAT). Three non-overlapping ranges of IPv4 addresses for private networks are reserved. These addresses are not routed on the Internet and thus their use need not be coordinated with an IP address registry.

Reserved private IPv4 network ranges

Reserved private IPv4 network ranges


IP addresses are assigned to a host either dynamically as they join the network, or persistently by configuration of the host hardware or software. The latter is also known as using a static IP address. In contrast, when a computer’s IP address is assigned each time it restarts, this is known as using a dynamic IP address.

Dynamic addresses are assigned by network using Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP). DHCP is the most frequently used technology for assigning addresses. It avoids the administrative burden of assigning specific static addresses to each device on a network. It also allows devices to share the limited address space on a network if only some of them are online at a particular time. Typically, dynamic IP configuration is enabled by default in modern desktop operating systems.