IP addresses: What they are for and how they work

IP addresses are great protagonists of the current operation of the internet. But what is an IP address? What is it for? Why should I know? Do not worry, here we will tell you everything you need to know about the subject.

What is an IP address?

The first thing you should know is what IP means: they are the initials of Internet Protocol, which translated into Spanish we can call it as Internet Protocol. In other words, it is the standard system by which the internet works through a process of sending and receiving information.

An IP address is a set of numbers, unique and unrepeatable, that identifies a device with the ability to connect to the internet. It can be a computer, tablet, cell phone, or even smart devices prepared for IoT (Internet of things).

Consider a simpler example to explain what an IP address is:

Imagine that the roads in your city are the Internet, and the vehicles that circulate on them are the devices from which people navigate.

Whatever the means of transport, everyone has a license plate, and it is what identifies and differentiates them. In this sense, we could say that the license plate of a vehicle in this example is the IP address of your device connected to the Internet.

What is an IP address for?

IP addresses are used to identify devices connected to the Internet. They also work to place computers and web portals together on a network.

IP address types

IPs are divided into two types: public and private. These can be used in two ways: dynamic IPs and static IPs.

Private IP Address

This is the set of numbers that are assigned to each computer that is connected to a private network. For example, the IP address is generated by connecting your cell phone, tablet or computer to your home’s Wi-Fi network.

On the other hand, private IP addresses are classified into three ranges of number sets. These are the following:

  • Class A: From to This is generally used for large networks, such as that of a transnational company;
  • Class B: From to For medium-sized networks, such as that of a local company or school;
  • Class C: From to It corresponds to smaller networks, such as home networks.

Public IP Address

These are visible to anyone who surfs the Internet and serves to identify users on the large network. It is intended for servers that operate 24 hours a day and it is possible to hire as many as needed.

They are a number that identifies a device within a network and an Internet connection point.

Ways to use IP addresses


It is the IP address assigned to a device, which does not change. In other words, it will use the same IP number for life. It applies to both public or private addresses.

Static IP addresses offer greater stability and download speed. Although they may be more vulnerable to certain inconveniences, such as hacker attacks for example; Since being static addresses, hackers have more time to operate in them.

To obtain an IP address, it is necessary to pay an additional fee and the configuration of these must be manually, so if you do not have much technical knowledge, it will be necessary to hire someone to help you with the service.


Dynamic IP addresses are characterized by changing each time the device connects to the Internet. It is generally used when providers have more clients than IP addresses due to the low probability that they all connect at the same time.

In addition to offering greater security and privacy, its configuration is automatic. However, a weak point of this type of IP address is the probability that the connection will be interrupted, as this happens more frequently than in a fixed IP. Many times, when the modem that provides Wifi in your home must be disconnected and connected to improve the connection, your IP number changed.

How does an IP address work?

Now that we have defined what an IP address is, let’s learn how it works.

The router is responsible for assigning the IPs to the different devices that are connected. Thanks to this, it is impossible for two computers to have the same IP.

For this same reason, it is not possible to maintain fixed connections between several devices, such as shared folders and printers. Since each time the equipment is connected, they will have a different IP; This is what happens with dynamic IPs.

However, we talk about a static IP, as the name implies, we would be talking about an IP address that does not change. This is only possible by making a configuration on the device.

How to find the IP address of a website?

Finding the IP address of a website or a domain is an easy task. We will show you below the step by step you should follow.

  • Press the “Start” button on your computer.
  • Type in the “cdm” programs and files search engine.
  • Press “Enter.”
  • The MS-DOS console will open, where you must type “nslookup google.com.” Instead of “google.com,” you must enter the domain name of the page you wish to consult.
  • Next, you will see the IP address.
  • What is the relationship that the IP address has with domains and web servers?
  • Web pages are created with files, which are stored inside a computer that transforms them into the interface that all users can see on the Internet.

The computer that stores the information of the websites is a server, which in turn has one or more IP addresses that identify it, for example, “”.

At the beginning of the internet, computers conversed with each other through IP addresses, without using domains or DNS. It is in the same way that someone was calling a friend to a landline. It was necessary to know the number or have it stored in an agenda.

With the rapid massification of the internet and the number of websites created, learning or saving the numbers of IP addresses began to be an unfeasible activity. Imagine that you had to save the IP addresses of all the websites you enter every day, it would be crazy!

For this reason, the domains were created. They are linked to the IP of the server through the DNS (Domains Name System). It simplifies the process of accessing a website. An example of a domain is: mywebsite.com

What is the DNS

The DNS (Domain Name System) is responsible for “translating” the numbers of an IP address into a domain name. In other words, they convert the domain written in the browser and direct access to the server to which the domain points.

Where can I find the IP address of the server when buying a Web Hosting?

Now that you know what an IP address is, what it is for, and what is its importance in the gigantic world of the internet. It is important to keep in mind that when you purchase a web hosting plan to host your website, you receive the information about the IP address that corresponds to the server that will save the information on your website. You must associate it with the domain name you have registered.