Every computer has its own unique IP address every time it accesses the Internet, and it will help you at some point in time to know about setting it up. Static IP is an IP address that has been provided to you by your ISP (Internet Service Provider) permanently, and this particular element is your computer's unique identity over the Internet.
Knowledge about setting it up will aid in Internet access if you are hosting a website, running any kind of server, or accessing your computer remotely.
Static and Dynamic IP
Most broadband Internet connections automatically assign IP addresses to their customers, and this is known as dynamic IP. The difference between the two is simply that the latter is assigned automatically by the ISP when a computer connects to the Internet, so it keeps changing from time to time.
On the other hand, static IP remains the same every time the computer accesses the Internet, and these entities are mostly used in local area networks (LANs). By carrying out this setup, you are giving your computer one fixed identity, which will not change each and every time that you access the Internet.
This is a guide for Windows XP; if you can understand this process, you will also be able to carry out the setup on Windows Vista and Windows 7.
The first thing you need to do is to get the information regarding the IP address, the Subnet mask, the default gateway, the preferred DNS server, and the alternate DNS server. There are two ways for you to get this information. You can either contact your ISP and get it from them, or you can try the following procedure:
- Go to the 'Start' menu and click on 'Run'.
- Now, type 'cmd' in the box and click on 'OK'.
- A command prompt window (DOS window) will open. Type 'ipconfig/all' and press Enter.
- Note down all the information that comes on your screen regarding the IP address, Subnet mask, default gateway, preferred DNS server, and alternate DNS server. You will need this information later.
Now, follow these instructions to complete your setup:
- Go to the 'Start' menu and click on 'Control Panel'.
- Click on 'Network Connections', and find the connection that you make use of to connect to the Internet.
- Right click on that connection and select 'Properties'.
- Now, select 'Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)', and then select the 'Properties' tab.
- In the window that opens, you must first select 'Use the following IP address', and deselect 'Obtain an IP address automatically'.
- All the information and numbers that you had noted down earlier need to be entered in the subsequent boxes.
Thus, these are certain steps that will help you to set it up within a few minutes. Remember that there is no obvious advantage that static IP has over the dynamic type if you are simply surfing the Internet. It is only useful if you are hosting a website or accessing your computer remotely.