IP address questions and clarifications

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IP address questions and clarifications

Post by theodoreoyama »

I searched for what my IP was online, and it’s different from the one I see when I use the command console to check IPCONFIG (I’m on windows). Now I’m very confused and websites don’t seem to distinguish between different ip’s


What exactly are IP addresses

-Is my computers IP permanent? Or is it dependent on my router’s IP? Does it change in any way?

-What are the different kinds of IP addresses? I’ve heard of IPv4 and v6, but now it seems like my one device has multiple IPs?

-One of my IP’s is apparently called “public,” is this a security concern? How well Should I protect my IP address(es)

Any answers or resources would be appreciated! Thank you!
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Re: IP address questions and clarifications

Post by gabrielbo954 »

Hey there,

Let me break down your questions:

What exactly are IP addresses?
IP addresses are like home addresses but for your devices on the internet. They're unique identifiers that allow devices to find and communicate with each other.

Is my computer's IP permanent?
It can be, but usually, it's not. Home networks usually have dynamic IP addresses that change periodically. If you're seeing a different IP in IPCONFIG, that's likely your private IP on your local network, given to your computer by your router.

Dependency on the router's IP?
Your computer's IP on your home network depends on your router’s DHCP settings (that's what assigns IP addresses within your local network). The router itself gets an IP from your ISP, which is what you see when you look up "What is my IP address" on the internet – that's your public IP.

Does it change?
Your private IP changes when your device disconnects from the network, or the DHCP lease expires and renews. Your public IP can change if your router reconnects to your ISP or if the ISP assigns a new one.

Different kinds of IP addresses?
IPv4 is the older, most commonly used version, which looks like four groups of numbers (e.g., IPv6 is newer, longer, and allows for more unique addresses because we're running out of IPv4 ones. Devices can have multiple IP addresses because they can be connected to multiple networks (like Wi-Fi and wired ethernet), each needing a different IP.

Your public IP is how the internet sees your device via your router. It's normal for websites to see your public IP, but you should protect it to maintain privacy and security. Don't share it publicly, be wary of scams asking for your IP, and consider using a VPN if you're concerned about privacy – it hides your real IP from the websites you visit.

On a local network (like your home Wi-Fi), your IP is private and only seen by other devices on the same network. This is different from your public IP, which is what the rest of the internet sees and can be linked back to your internet provider and, by extension, to the general location of your network.

Re: IP address questions and clarifications

Post by theodoreoyama »

Thank you for breaking down those questions! In addition, I wonder: What's the difference between IPv4 and IPv6? How can I find my public IP address?
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