An IP address is a number assigned to a particular device and is used as a type of identification when browsing the network. It is an acronym for “Internet Protocol” and consists of eight numbers, separated into four groups by dots.
Everyone who contracts an Internet service is assigned an IP by the provider. This can be fixed or variable, depending on the technical characteristics of the operator and the possibility of contracting a payment service.
To give you an in-depth understanding of what a fixed IP is, we have developed this article. You’ll see the main advantages of this type of Internet protocol, as well as how you can quickly set up a static IP. Let’s get started!
What is a fixed IP and what are the differences with a dynamic one?
There are two types of IP: one public and one private. The first one is used for web browsing and the second one is assigned as a specific number for each device belonging to a private domain network.
These in turn are divided into fixed and dynamic. The latter are those that change direction due to technical requirements made by the Internet service provider, through a DHCP. They are characterized by being free and can be used by other devices when they are no longer assigned to yours.
In contrast, a fixed IP is one that keeps its number constant. This is an important advantage in terms of navigation stability. They are usually not free and are used especially in companies, also for playing online, or for virtual private networks and servers.
Not all Internet service providers provide this benefit to their customers. In our country, we can find Orange and Vodafone as clear examples. But you will find others where you will not have the possibility to access a fixed IP.
What are the main advantages of having a fixed IP in my network?
Something we mentioned in the previous paragraph regarding the advantages, and that is that it has a fixed IP has greater speed. This is because, since it is not constantly changing, it makes the internal processes of the server take less time to assign the IP.
We also told you they’re more stable connections. This is because you can configure the whole environment in one direction, which is much more difficult when you have a dynamic IP.
In addition, having exclusive control over the address means that no one else can use it, so you can be sure that the use is appropriate or that you have chosen it. This can often cause headaches, if a dynamic IP is used and a person carried out a cyber attack on any third party. Then that same IP is assigned to you, without you knowing anything about the illicit activities of its “previous owner”.
Although its configuration is not automatic, you can do it with very simple steps (which we will show you below). So having a static IP is not a problem for people with basic computer skills. If you are one of those who like to play online, a fixed IP address will solve many problems, since you will have a better speed and greater stability in navigation. It is also very useful for VoIP services.
Steps to set up a static IP on my computer quickly and easily
Follow this guide for a Windows 10 computer:
- Click on Windows and access the “Control Panel”.
- Choose the second option, “Networks and Internet”.
- Select “Network and Sharing Center”.
- Look for the section “Viewing basic network information and configuring connections2.
- Click on the “WiFi” network in the “Connections” field.
- Click on “Properties and then on “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)”.
- Activate “Use the following IP address:”.
- Write in the IP address field the one you have assigned according to the router device you have. Remember that the range must be between 2 and 254. That is, if you were assigned an IP 192.168.1.1, you can change it to 168.1.8 or 192.168.1.35.
- In “Subnet mask”, you must type 255.255.0.
- And in the default gateway you will write the access. That’s 168.1.1.
- Once you have finished entering all this data, you must leave the other fields empty and click on “OK”.
- Then you must choose “OK” and “Close” again.
If you want to check that you have done a perfect job, press “Windows + R” and type “simbo”. You will see a DOS window, type “ipconfig” and press “Enter”. Look for “WiFi Wireless LAN Adapter”, which is the IP address you have assigned.
If your computer has a Windows 8 OS you will need to do these steps:
- Click on the Windows key and then type in IP.
- You will be presented with a menu from which you must choose Settings and then click on View Network Connections.
- Choose the wireless network adapter and right click on it.
- Select TCP /IPv4 and then look for the Properties option, to click on it.
- Look for Use the following IP address and write in the address that is within the range of the IP address according to the router you have which should be between 2 and 254. That is to say, you should change the last number you see assigned.
- Then follow the same steps we showed you for Windows 10.
In case you have a Mac, here’s what you need to do:
- Go to “System Preferences” and select “Network”.
- Then you must click on “Advanced” and choose the tab “TCP/IP”.
- Change the “Configure IPv4” field to “Use DHCP with manual address”.
- Type the “IP” in “IPv4 address” and click on “OK”.
Is it really convenient to have a static IP nowadays?
While a static IP has greater stability and speed, it is also necessary to clarify that they are less secure. This is because attackers have a better chance if a computer has the same IP every time. Therefore, it is necessary to take extra and more rigorous security measures.
Another factor that often makes a fixed IP not recommendable is that not all Internet service operators provide this service. So you should choose well before hiring one of them. Besides, the prices in the rates are much higher than for those who provide an interim.
From all this we can conclude that, at present, it is not convenient to have a static IP.
Movistar stops offering free fixed IP to its users. How will this affect the service?
As of 15 December 2019, Movistar terminated its fixed IP address service for which there was not a penny to pay. This way, users had to choose whether they wanted to change their rate and pay around 25 euros more in their monthly fee or have a dynamic IP.
This generated some inconveniences within the clients, since if they wanted to leave they had to take into account what the rate was that they had contracted and the period of permanence if it had been fulfilled or not. If they did not fulfill this contract, the user had to pay a penalty to cancel the contract.