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What is an IP Address?

Internet Protocol or IP addresses

An Internet Protocol (IP) address is a unique digital suite that identifies a particular device on a computer network. It first identifies the location of the device. Moreover, its protocol allows computers and other devices to communicate with each other.

There are two types of IP address standards: IPv4 and IPv6. IPv4 is the original IP address display format designed in 1983. The IPv4 structure consists of 4 numerical sets from 0 to 255, separated by dots (for example: «»).

The IPv6 format is a new type of IP address that is gradually replacing IPv4. This is a much longer complex alphanumeric suite. For example, an IPv6 address may look like 2620:cc:8000:1c62:594c:cc2e:f1fa:6b9a.

With the constant increase in the number of devices connected to the internet, the limitations of the IPv4 system begin to appear. By its operation, it can manage only 4.2 billion addresses when there are already more than 5 billion Internet users.

Therefore, IPv6 addresses are already used alongside IPv4 addresses which they are slowly but surely replacing.

Since IP addresses are difficult to remember, the domain name system (DNS) was created to convert them into domain names. These are much easier to remember and more user-friendly than IP addresses.

Updated on: 22/03/2023

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