Just in case you do not know what an IP address is, or Internet Protocol address, it is a set of numbers that identifies a device on a network. A network device, such as a computer or phone, uses IP addresses to communicate with each other, and they are necessary for sending and receiving information over the internet. There are four types of IP addresses: public, private, static, and dynamic.
Why are there 4 types of IP addresses and what are the differences between them?
- Public: A public IP can be accessed over the internet and has an IP assigned to a router by an internet service provider (ISP). This IP address is accessible by the world because it directly interfaces with the WAN (Wide Area Network) or the internet.
- Private: Devices that connect to your router have private IP addresses because they are located on a private network, or LAN (Local Area Network). These IP addresses get assigned by your network router and usually account for the devices connected within a home or office building.
- Static: When a device is assigned a static IP address, this address is fixed, it does not change. This is sometimes desirable for businesses that run internet services and require a fixed address for network connections.
- Dynamic: When a device is assigned a dynamic IP address, this address is variable, it changes often. Most network devices have dynamic IP addresses.
How to determine the IP address of your computer
- Find your public IP address: The easiest and quickest way to find your public IP address is to Google “What is my IP address.” Your IP address will be displayed.
- Find your private IP address (Windows 10): First, open Settings > click on Network and Internet. Then, on the next screen, select Status in left pane. In the right pane, click the Properties button for the active Network on your computer. Finally, on the Network Properties screen, you will see your Private IP Address listed.
- Find your private IP address (Windows 11): Open the Settings menu by going to Start > Settings. You can also use the keyboard shortcut Windows key + I to open the Settings page directly. Then click on Network & internet. On the next screen, scroll down, and on the right-hand side, you will find the IP address of your connection listed.