What is an IP address and what are different types, versions, formats, and examples of IP address? How an IP address works or functions over the Internet network. In this article, we will know more about an IP address with their types, formats, versions, and examples. Have you ever thought about how a computer or mobile device works over an internet network? You can just imagine for a while, have you ever asked someone’s house address to find them. When you have their address, then it makes it easy to find them in any country, city or village, etc. Similarly, every device must contain a unique IP address and this address is an internet protocol that helps to identify the hosting network and its location. An IP address is the most crucial part of how the internet works. If you want to know more about what is an IP address and how your computer works while connected with an Internet network, then you are on the right platform. In this article “What is my IP address? Definition, types, versions and examples of IP address”, we will learn about the standard pocket definition of IP address, the use of an IP address, and various types of IP address with their examples, versions of IP address, and formats of IP address. So let’s start with the definition of IP address.
What is an IP address?
An IP is abbreviated for Internet Protocol and an IP address is a numerical representation of the internet network that is being used to communicate with any computer or mobile device.
In simple words, an IP address is a network address for any computer or mobile device so that the internet knows where to send images, emails, files, and any information from source to destination.
There are billions of devices that are communicating over the internet. So to identify each device separately, the device must have an assigned specific IP address. An IP address is a combination of a unique number consisting of 4 parts separated by dots such as 220.127.116.11 and 127.16.0.3, etc.
Read also: Http vs Https
Format of an IP address
An IP address is the unique identifier of a device over an internet network. The basic format of an IP address looks like 192.168.0.101.
An IP address is a combination of four numbers separated by dots and each number ranges from 0 to 255. This means an IP address ranges from 0.0.0.0 (minimum range) to 255.255.255.255 (maximum range).
Range of an IP address
The range of an IP address varies from 0 to 255. This means an IP address may be between 0.0.0.0 to 255.255.255.255. The reason behind this logic can be better understand by the Binary Number system. In which all digits behave as an octet or made up of either 0 or 1.
In a Binary system, 0 would be 00000000, and 255 would be 11111111. Similarly, an IP address can range from minimum 0 to the maximum 255.
Hence, we above given IP address 192.168.0.101 would be written in Binary format as 11000000.10101000.00000000.01100101.
As we know, a computer or mobile device works with a binary number system to understand the machine language. Hence, an IP address is formatted as in the binary system to communicate between two or more devices.
Further, we are going to discuss two different parts of an IP address.
Parts of an IP address
An IP address is made up of two different parts such as Network ID and Host ID. For a better understanding of both parts of an IP address, refer to the below image.
Versions of IP address
There are two versions of IP are currently exist over the Internet;
- IP version 4 (IPv4)
- IP version 6 (IPv6)
IP version 4 (IPv4)
Addresses in IPv4 are 32-bits long and allows a maximum of 4,294,967,296 (232) unique addresses. An IP address in IPv4 is expressed in decimal form. However, Typically IP addresses are in binary formats but to make our understanding better, we use the decimal form in IPv4.
Example: The address 192.168.0.101 represents the 32-bits binary number 11000000.10101000.00000000.01100101.
IP version 6 (IPv6)
Addressed in IPv6 are 128-bits long and allows a maximum of 3.4 x 1038 (2128) unique addresses, that’s over 340 undecillion addresses. Further, IPv6 is expressed in Hexadecimal form.
Example: 2DAB:FFFF:0000:3EAE:01AA:00FF:DD72:2C4A is an example of IPv6
What is my private IP address?
There are some techniques to find the private IP address on your device like Windows, Smartphone, etc.
- If you want to know the private IP address on your windows device, follow the following steps:
Step-1: Go to the start/search box (bottom left corner on your screen) and type cmd to get the command prompt option.
After entering this option, you will get a window like this.
Step-2: Now enter the command ipconfig.
Step-3: After entering the above command, press the enter key
- If you are using a Mac device, then enter the above command ipconfig in your terminal app.
- Further, if you are a Smartphone or mobile user, you can follow the steps below to find the private IP address of your device.
Step-1: Go to the setting option
Step-2: Click on the WiFi setting to find the IP address of your device.
- If you are an iOS user, click the ‘i’ button next to the network option.
- If you are an Android user, click the network name under the WiFi setting to find the IP address.
Types of IP address
There are the following types of IP addresses as follows:
Public IP Address
A public IP address is used to connect your home or business networks. It helps a user to connect them worldwide. This IP address is unique for all users. Follow the below link to find out the public IP address. You can check your public IP address by clicking on https://www.whatismyip.com/what-is-my-public-ip-address/ in your browser, and it will display your public IP address.
Static IP address
Static IP is defined as the IP address that remains fixed; it never changes. When you sign in with any internet service provider, an IP address is assigned to you. It can be static or dynamic. But most of the IP addresses provided by ISP are dynamic in nature or dynamic IP addresses. It is cheap for both you and the Internet Service Provider (ISP).
These types of IP addresses can’t change automatically, and you can configure it manually on a network of your device are called static IP address.
Dynamic IP address
It is opposite to a static IP address as it changes automatically. You don’t need to configure it manually on a network by setting up your router with the internet. An IP address is distributed and managed by Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP). The router works as a DHCP, which assigns the IP address to the network for your devices in home and business.
How does IP address works?
An IP address is the most important factor which determines how the internet works or how the internet communicates with different devices simultaneously. In the real world, we give our devices specific names or use the domain names to identify the website over the internet. Similarly, these devices use an IP address to identify one another. An IP address based on two basic functions as follows:
- First, it identifies the host or network interface and provides the host location over the network.
- Then it established a path to the host.
When a device communicates with another device, it must have the following information such as:
- Name: It identifies what we are looking for.
- Address: It indicates the location of other devices or where it is located exactly.
- Route: It tells how to get the other device’s location or route to approach the destination.
In conclusion, all devices must have their unique Ip addresses or identifiers to communicate with all other devices over the internet network. These identifiers are known as Internet Protocol (IP) address.