Before you change your Internet Protocol (IP) address, you need to find out whether your IP address is static or dynamic. A static IP is assigned to a particular computer and is stable, that is, it does not change at any time unless someone changes it. Many broadband users have a static IP address assigned to their devices by their service providers. Static IP addresses are assigned to host names which make them easy for the servers to remember. Now, precisely because of the huge numbers of IP addresses, and also because these numbers are limited as the Internet attracts more and more users, most Internet Service Providers now provide dynamic IP addresses using DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol). Unlike, the static IP address, the dynamic address changes every time the user connects to the Internet. So before trying out some other ways of changing the IP address, you may want to try the most basic way of doing that by simply unplugging your cable or modem for five to ten minutes. If that doesn’t work, you can still repeat the process for a slightly longer time, say 10 hours, or overnight or when no one is using the computer. If none of these methods succeed, you may have to undertake the (slightly) painstaking process of having to manually change the IP by using any of the processes outlined below.
Different platforms have different ways of changing Internet protocol addresses. If you are using Microsoft’s Windows Operating system, you may follow the instructions outlined below. The procedure for different versions of Windows OS may differ, but retain major similarities. This is how you would change an IP address for your own Local Area Network (LAN):
- Go to the desktop and click on “Start”, and then go to “My Network Places”.
- Alternately, after clicking on “Start”, you can go to “Network Neighborhood”, and in either case, go to “Properties”.
- Right-lick on LAN and select “Properties”.
- Click on the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) and then select “Properties”.
- On the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) properties section, Choose, “use the following IP address”.
- Write down the old IP address before removing it (you might need it if you have problems with the new one), and then insert the new IP address.
- Specify the suitable subnet mask for your network. Remember here that the leftmost bits have to be set to ‘1’ and the ones on the rightmost have to be set to ‘0’.
- Specify the “Default Gateway” in the appropriate box. This amounts to adding the IP address of the computer or device that connects other computers to the Internet, including the one that you are about to change.
- You will also need to specify the IP address of the computer that distributes host names to IP addresses on the “Preferred DNS Server” box.
- Finish the process by clicking Ok on all dialogue boxes.
You will need a root access to change IP address for this platform. And if you already have it, then go to the command prompt and move to the /etc/sysconfig/network directory. Make the appropriate changes to the interfaces file, including adjusting your network settings.