What Is an Internet Address? Your Guide to IP Addresses

What Is an Internet Address? Your Guide to IP Addresses

New to the internet? Want to get a little more involved?

Many people want to know – “What is an internet address?”. And it can often be hard to find the answer. 

In this article, we will cover exactly that and more. 

Keep reading to find out what is an IP address.

What Is An Internet Adress?

Internet Protocol (IP) address is the assigned address of your network hardware. It allows you to connect the computer to any other device on the network, and join it to others in the world. An IP address is made up numbers and/or characters/ 

An example of an IP address can be this: 304.322.14.518

Each and every device that is using an internet connection has been assigned a unique IP, which means there’s a need for having an indefinite amount of address. This is fulfilled via the newer version of IPv6.

IP version comes in two forms: IPv4 and IPv6. The first covers a range of over 4 billion addresses. Whereas, the new one is able to assign up to a trillion IP’s to fulfill the needs of the new internet.

The IPv4 is configured via numeric values and can conflict with other addresses. Hence, why the newer system has adopted a hexadecimal method to provide unique addresses to others.

An example of an IPv6 address can be this: 4bbr:1942:5858:7:600:t4gg:tk54:98vf

However, that’s not it. IP’s come in other formats, such as private, public, dynamic, and statics. So let’s talk about those as well.

A Private IP Address

The private IP address is the value assigned to your device when connected on an internet network. If you have multiple devices connected to a single internet service provider, all of the devices will have a unique private IP. This IP cannot be accessed from devices outside of the network.

For example

These addresses are not unique, as they are limited in correlation to the number of devices on the network.

To find out the IP address on your device, you can try this:

On Windows – open command prompt, and type ipconfig.

How to find IP address on mac? Well, there’s a whole guide for it.

If you are using the internet on your phone, you can access the WiFi settings to find out the address. IOS users can click on the information button near the network. Android uses can click the network name, and the IP address will show up.

A Public IP Address

The public IP address is the IP address assigned to the network you are connected to. This address connects you to the world and is unique for all users.

To find out the public IP address, you should go to the SupportAlly website, and it will display your exact public IP. It will also included additional browser information, which you may or may not find interesting.

A public IP address is vulnerable in the form, that a tech-savvy person can get access to yours remotely. Even though the limitations placed on remote functionality, there are still some risks to this. 

As other attacks can be directed using this information, but can easily be prevented via regular internet maintenance.

A Static or Dynamic IP Address

Both the private and public IP addresses can be dynamic or static. An IP address that thas been configured manually, and fixed to the network would be a static one. These cannot change of their own accord.

A dynamic IP address automatically changes and assigns it’s IP when you connect to the network from the router or reset it. The distribution of the IP address is manged via the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, which is most often your router.

Some other forms of IP address add-ons exist, depending on your ISP – such as dry protocols, open loops, port ranges, etc. All of which have some correlation and affect how your internet protocol behaves within the internet.

How Is An IP Address Managed & Distributed?

All IP addresses, except for private IPS are managed by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, which holds responsibility for the entire IP address pool. But is distributed via the Regional Internet Registries, which receives the large blogs of IPS from the IANA.

RIRs distribute and register IP addresses, and any other relevant internet number sources, such as Autonomous System Numbers, Domain Name Systems with respective regional matching. 

This is done in adherence to policy, which has been developed by the respective regional community, via an open and bottom-up process.

Currently, five RIRs exist. They are:

  1. RIPE NCC – Central Asia, Middle East, Europe
  2. APNIC – Asia Pacific
  3. ARIN – North America, North Atlantic, and Caribbean islands
  4. AfriNIC – Africa
  5. LACNIC – Latin America and the Caribbean

These five RIRs form the Number Resource Organisation, which functions as a joint executive, working on joint technical projects, policy coordination, and liaison activities.

All About The IP – Explained

Now that you understand what is an internet address, you are well on your way using this information, however, you like. When involving yourself in the more technical aspects of internet use, you will quickly come to realize that’s it’s really not that confusing. 

There’s plenty of benefits to knowing things function behind closed doors. So do what you must with this information, whether it be to improve your privacy or find ways to use IP changes for improved internet performance. 

All is possible, and all that is needed is some carefully deliberate attention and research.

If you’re interested in reading similar articles, check out some of our other blogs.

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