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Proxy Basics. 5 Things You Know Before You Use One – What Is My IP …
One of the most misunderstood computer terms—and services—may be the proxy. Most of us aren’t IT experts or computer geeks, so all we want to know is “What does it do for me? ” So let’s try to answer that question as simply as we can.
You may have even used a proxy, but just not have been aware of it. Today, a common type of proxy is called a VPN, for “virtual private network. ”
If you look up the word proxy, you’ll see that it simply means a “substitute who stands in for or represents another. ” In the Internet world, a proxy is an IP address that you can use as you go on the Internet that also shields your actual IP address at that time.
You either have to sign up for a virtual private network or be given access to one, by your employer, for example.
A VPN is more than just a substitute IP address—it also provides a highly secure connection that delivers more security that most on the Internet, including the one offered by your Internet Service Provider.
A VPN is a connection that’s available online, on-demand. Once you sign up for a VPN account—whenever you want anonymity, a safer secure connection or a way around Internet blocks on your IP address—you can route your connection through your VPN provider.
You get to keep your current ISP, which remains your primary Internet connection at home. There are some free VPNs, but it’s better if you pay for better service.
There are two different types of VPNs that are common today. One is for private/corporate work purposes and the other is for Internet browsing only.
A VPN for work purposes.
For example, my wife works for an advertising agency as a proofreader. At times, she’s asked to do work on the computer long after she’s left work. But she no longer has to go back to the office to do her work, thanks to the company’s very own virtual private network.
Instead of going into the office, she simply goes to her work laptop in our home office. We have an Internet connection that is always running. She doesn’t have to open an Internet browser, such as Google Chrome or Internet Explorer—she simply clicks on an icon and keys in her password to open up the VPN automatically.
Once she’s on, she can access drives and folders on her company’s server, which are accessible only to employees who are on-site or who have the exclusive VPN connection. That way, she can open up a presentation or a document that she’d typically be able to open only at work. That whole time she’s online and connected to her workplace computer/server, she’s using a virtual private network.
A secure connection is what is important.
This VPN connection provides her with a data “tunnel” which all of her online activity will go through. This is the first and most well-known quality of a VPN. All data “traffic” that goes through a VPN, whether it’s an email or a Google search, is encrypted—that means it’s electronically “scrambled” and would be undecipherable if tapped into by a hacker.
A VPN for ordinary folks.
As you might know, a lot of people have become worried about Internet safety and privacy. Many of these same people are worried that their IP addresses might be captured by “outsiders” or hackers and used for scams or computer attacks.
Thankfully, there are VPNs that are dedicated to the one application (program) that people care about the most: Internet browsing. Instead of a corporate virtual private network to connect to the workplace, a public VPN lets you connect to a network of computers to hide your IP address and give you a secure connection on the Internet while protecting all of your data transmissions.
To recap: People don’t use VPNs just to hide their IP addresses. A VPN can also protect your data when you’re on the Internet and can give you access to the websites and information that might otherwise block you out.
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There are a number of virtual private networks you can sign up with. To help you, we’ve put together a VPN comparison page on our website that can link you directly to VPN services. Plus you can learn more by checking out our articles on VPNs.
See the VPN Comparison List.
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How Do IP Addresses Work? – HowToGeek
Every device connected to a network—computer, tablet, camera, whatever—needs a unique identifier so that other devices know how to reach it. In the world of TCP/IP networking, that identifier is the Internet Protocol (IP) address.
If you’ve worked with computers for any amount of time, you’ve likely been exposed to IP addresses—those numerical sequences that look something like 192. 168. 0. 15. Most of the time, we don’t have to deal with them directly, since our devices and networks take care of that stuff behind the scenes. When we do have to deal with them, we often just follow instructions about what numbers to put where. But, if you’ve ever wanted to dive a little deeper into what those numbers mean, this article is for you.
RELATED: 8 Common Network Utilities Explained
Why should you care? Well, understanding how IP addresses work is vital if you ever want to troubleshoot why your network isn’t working right, or why a particular device isn’t connecting the way you’d expect it to. And, if you ever need to set up something a little more advanced—like hosting a game server or media server to which friends from the internet can connect—you’ll need to know something about IP addressing. Plus, it’s kind of fascinating.
Note: We’re going to be covering the basics of IP addressing in this article, the kind of stuff that people who use IP addresses, but never really thought much about them, might want to know. We’re not going to be covering some of the more advanced, or professional, level stuff, like IP classes, classless routing, and custom subnetting…but we will point to some sources for further reading as we go along.
What Is an IP Address?
An IP address uniquely identifies a device on a network. You’ve seen these addresses before; they look something like 192. 1. 34.
An IP address is always a set of four numbers like that. Each number can range from 0 to 255. So, the full IP addressing range goes from 0. 0 to 255. 255. 255.
The reason each number can only reach up to 255 is that each of the numbers is really an eight digit binary number (sometimes called an octet). In an octet, the number zero would be 00000000, while the number 255 would be 11111111, the maximum number the octet can reach. That IP address we mentioned before (192. 34) in binary would look like this: 11000000. 10101000. 00000001. 00100010.
Computers work with the binary format, but we humans find it much easier to work with the decimal format. Still, knowing that the addresses are actually binary numbers will help us understand why some things surrounding IP addresses work the way they do.
Don’t worry, though! We’re not going to be throwing a lot of binary or math at you in this article, so just bear with us a bit longer.
The Two Parts of An IP Address
A device’s IP address actually consists of two separate parts:
Network ID: The network ID is a part of the IP address starting from the left that identifies the specific network on which the device is located. On a typical home network, where a device has the IP address 192. 34, the 192. 1 part of the address will be the network ID. It’s custom to fill in the missing final part with a zero, so we might say that the network ID of the device is 192. 0.
Host ID: The host ID is the part of the IP address not taken up by the network ID. It identifies a specific device (in the TCP/IP world, we call devices “hosts”) on that network. Continuing our example of the IP address 192. 34, the host ID would be 34—the host’s unique ID on the 192. 0 network.
On your home network, then, you might see several devices with IP address like 192. 1, 192. 2, 192. 1 30, and 192. 34. All of these are unique devices (with host IDs 1, 2, 30, and 34 in this case) on the same network (with the network ID 192. 0).
To picture all this a little better, let’s turn to an analogy. It’s pretty similar to how street addresses work within a city. Take an address like 2013 Paradise Street. The street name is like the network ID, and the house number is like the host ID. Within a city, no two streets will be named the same, just like no two network IDs on the same network will be named the same. On a particular street, every house number is unique, just like all host iDs within a particular network ID are unique.
The Subnet Mask
So, how does your device determine which part of the IP address is the network ID and which part the host ID? For that, they use a second number that you’ll always see in association with an IP address. That number is called the subnet mask.
On most simple networks (like the ones in homes or small businesses), you’ll see subnet masks like 255. 0, where all four numbers are either 255 or 0. The position of the changes from 255 to 0 indicate the division between the network and host ID. The 255s “mask out” the network ID from the equation.
Note: The basic subnet masks we’re describing here are known as default subnet masks. Things get more complicated than this on bigger networks. People often use custom subnet masks (where the position of the break between zeros and ones shifts within an octet) to create multiple subnets on the same network. That’s a little beyond the scope of this article, but if you’re interested, Cisco has a pretty good guide on subnetting.
The Default Gateway Address
RELATED: Understanding Routers, Switches, and Network Hardware
In addition to the IP address itself and the associated subnet mask, you’ll also see a default gateway address listed along with IP addressing information. Depending on the platform you’re using, this address might be called something different. It’s sometimes called the “router, ” “router address, ” default route, ” or just “gateway. ” These are all the same thing. It’s the default IP address to which a device sends network data when that data is intended to go to a different network (one with a different network ID) than the one the device is on.
The simplest example of this is found in a typical home network.
If you have a home network with multiple devices, you likely have a router that’s connected to the internet through a modem. That router might be a separate device, or it might be part of a modem/router combo unit supplied by your internet provider. The router sits between the computers and devices on your network and the more public-facing devices on the internet, passing (or routing) traffic back and forth.
Say you fire up your browser and head to. Your computer sends a request to our site’s IP address. Since our servers are on the internet rather than on your home network, that traffic is sent from your PC to your router (the gateway), and your router forwards the request on to our server. The server sends the right information back to your router, which then routes the information back to the device that requested it, and you see our site pop up in your browser.
Typically, routers are configured by default to have their private IP address (their address on the local network) as the first host ID. So, for example, on a home network that uses 192. 0 for a network ID, the router is usually going to be 192. Of course, like most things, you can configure that to be something different if you want.
RELATED: How to Find Your Private and Public IP Addresses
There’s one final piece of information you’ll see assigned alongside a device’s IP address, subnet mask, and default gateway address: the addresses of one or two default Domain Name System (DNS) servers. We humans work much better with names than numerical addresses. Typing into your browser’s address bar is much easier than remembering and typing our site’s IP address.
DNS works kind of like a phone book, looking up human-readable things like website names, and converting those to IP addresses. DNS does this by storing all that information on a system of linked DNS servers across the internet. Your devices need to know the addresses of DNS servers to which to send their queries.
RELATED: What Is DNS, and Should I Use Another DNS Server?
On a typical small or home network, the DNS server IP addresses are often the same as the default gateway address. Devices send their DNS queries to your router, which then forwards the requests on to whatever DNS servers the router is configured to use. By default, these are usually whatever DNS servers your ISP provides, but you can change those to use different DNS servers if you want. Sometimes, you might have better success using DNS servers provided by third parties, like Google or OpenDNS.
What’s the Difference Between IPv4 and IPv6?
You also may have noticed while browsing through settings a different type of IP address, called an IPv6 address. The types of IP addresses we’ve talked about so far are addresses used by IP version 4 (IPv4)—a protocol developed in the late 70s. They use the 32 binary bits we talked about (in four octets) to provide a total of 4. 29 billion possible unique addresses. While that sounds like a lot, all the publicly available addresses were long ago assigned to businesses. Many of them are unused, but they are assigned and unavailable for general use.
In the mid-90s, worried about the potential shortage of IP addresses, the internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) designed IPv6. IPv6 uses a 128-bit address instead of the 32-bit address of IPv4, so the total number of unique addresses is measured in the undecillions—a number big enough that it’s unlikely to ever run out.
Unlike the dotted decimal notation used in IPv4, IPv6 addresses are expressed as eight number groups, divided by colons. Each group has four hexadecimal digits that represents 16 binary digits (so, it’s referred to as a hextet). A typical IPv6 address might look something like this:
The thing is, the shortage of IPv4 addresses that caused all the concern ended up being mitigated to a large extent by the increased use of private IP addresses behind routers. More and more people created their own private networks, using those private IP addresses that aren’t exposed publicly.
So, even though IPv6 is still a major player and that transition will still happen, it never happened as fully as predicted—at least not yet. If you’re interested in learning more, check out this history and timeline of IPv6.
How Does a Device Get Its IP Address?
Now that you know the basics of how IP addresses work, let’s talk about how devices get their IP addresses in the first place. There are really two types of IP assignments: dynamic and static.
RELATED: How to Find Any Device’s IP Address, MAC Address, and Other Network Connection Details
A dynamic IP address is assigned automatically when a device connects to a network. The vast majority of networks today (including your home network) use something called Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) to make this happen. DHCP is built into your router. When a device connects to the network, it sends out a broadcast message requesting an IP address. DHCP intercepts this message, and then assigns an IP address to that device from a pool of available IP addresses.
There are certain private IP address ranges routers will use for this purpose. Which is used depends on who made your router, or how you have set things up yourself. Those private IP ranges include:
10. 0 – 10. 255: If you’re a Comcast/Xfinity customer, the router provided by your ISP assigns addresses in this range. Some other ISPs also use these addresses on their routers, as does Apple on their AirPort routers.
192. 0 – 192. 255: Most commercial routers are set up to assign IP addresses in this range. For example, most Linksys routers use the 192. 0 network, while D-Link and Netgear both use the 198. 0 range
172. 16. 0 – 172. 255: This range is rarely used by any commercial vendors by default.
169. 254. 0 – 169. 255: This is a special range used by a protocol named Automatic Private IP Addressing. If your computer (or other device) is set up to retrieve its IP address automatically, but cannot find a DHCP server, it assigns itself an address in this range. If you see one of these addresses, it tells you that your device could not reach the DHCP server when it came time to get an IP address, and you may have a networking issue or trouble with your router.
The thing about dynamic addresses is that they can sometimes change. DHCP servers lease IP addresses to devices, and when those leases are up, the devices must renew the lease. Sometimes, devices will get a different IP address from the pool of addresses the server can assign.
Most of the time, this is not a big deal, and everything will “just work”. Occasionally, however, you might want to give a device an IP address that does not change. For example, maybe you have a device that you need to access manually, and you find it easier to remember an IP address than a name. Or maybe you have certain apps that can only connect to network devices using their IP address.
In those cases, you can assign a static IP address to those devices. There are a couple of ways to do this. You can manually configure the device with a static IP address yourself, although this can sometimes be janky. The other, more elegant solution is to configure your router to assign static IP addresses to certain devices during what would normally be dynamic assignment by the DHCP server. That way, the IP address never changes, but you don’t interrupt the DHCP process that keeps everything working smoothly.
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Subnet Cheat Sheet – 24 Subnet Mask, 30, 26, 27, 29, and other IP …
As a developer or network engineer, you may need to occasionally look up subnet mask values and figure out what they make your life easier, the freeCodeCamp community has made this simple cheat sheet. Just scroll or use Ctrl/Cmd + f to find the value you’re looking are the charts, followed by some explanations of what they mean.
# of IP addresses
# of usable IP addresses
255. 255. 255
0. 0. 0
255. 254. 1. 255
255. 252. 3. 255
255. 248. 7. 255
255. 240. 15. 255
255. 224. 31. 255
255. 192. 63. 255
255. 128. 127. 255
1, 048, 576
1, 048, 574
2, 097, 152
2, 097, 150
4, 194, 304
4, 194, 302
8, 388, 608
8, 388, 606
16, 777, 216
16, 777, 214
33, 554, 432
33, 554, 430
67, 108, 864
67, 108, 862
134, 217, 728
134, 217, 726
268, 435, 456
268, 435, 454
536, 870, 912
536, 870, 910
1, 073, 741, 824
1, 073, 741, 822
2, 147, 483, 648
2, 147, 483, 646
4, 294, 967, 296
4, 294, 967, 294
* /31 is a special case detailed in RFC 3021 where networks with this type of subnet mask can assign two IP addresses as a point-to-point here’s a table of the decimal to binary conversions for subnet mask and wildcard octets:
Note that the wildcard is just the inverse of the subnet you are new to network engineering, you can get a better idea of how computer networks work nally, this cheat sheet and the rest of the article is focused on IPv4 addresses, not the newer IPv6 protocol. If you’d like to learn more about IPv6, check out the article on computer networks Do IP Address Blocks Work? IPv4 addresses like 192. 168. 1 are really just decimal representations of four binary block is 8 bits, and represents numbers from 0-255. Because the blocks are groups of 8 bits, each block is known as an octet. And since there are four blocks of 8 bits, every IPv4 address is 32 bits. For example, here’s what the IP address 172. 16. 1 looks like in binary:Source: IPv4To convert an IP address between its decimal and binary forms, you can use this chart:
The chart above represents one 8 bit lets say you want to convert the IP address 168. 210. 225. 206. All you need to do is break the address into four blocks (168, 210, 225, and 206), and convert each into binary using the chart member that in binary, 1 is the equivalent to “on” and 0 is “off”. So to convert the first block, 168, into binary, just start from the beginning of the chart and place a 1 or 0 in that cell until you get a sum of example:
128 + 32 + 8 = 168, which in binary is you do this for the rest of the blocks, you’d get is Subnetting? If you look at the table above, it can seem like the number of IP addresses is practically unlimited. After all, there are almost 4. 2 billion possible IPv4 addresses if you think about how much the internet has grown, and how many more devices are connected these days, it might not surprise you to hear that there’s already a shortage of IPv4 cause the shortage was recognized years ago, developers came up with a way to split up an IP address into smaller networks called process, called subnetting, uses the host section of the IP address to break it down into those smaller networks or nerally, an IP address is made up of network bits and host bits:Source: What is IPv4So generally, subnetting does two things: it gives us a way to break up networks into subnets, and allows devices to determine whether another device/IP address is on the same local network or not. A good way to think about subnetting is to picture your wireless network at home. Without subnetting, every internet connected device would need its own unique IP since you have a wireless router, you just need one IP address for your router. This public or external IP address is usually handled automatically, and is assigned by your internet service provider (ISP) every device connected to that router has its own private or internal IP address:Source: What Is My IP Address? Now if your device with the internal IP address 192. 101 wants to communicate with another device, it’ll use the IP address of the other device and the subnet combination of the IP addresses and subnet mask allows the device at 192. 101 to figure out if the other device is on the same network (like the device at 192. 103), or on a completely different network somewhere else terestingly, the external IP address assigned to your router by your ISP is probably part of a subnet, which might include many other IP addresses for nearby homes or businesses. And just like internal IP addresses, it also needs a subnet mask to Subnet Masks WorkSubnet masks function as a sort of filter for an IP address. With a subnet mask, devices can look at an IP address, and figure out which parts are the network bits and which are the host using those things, it can figure out the best way for those devices to you’ve poked around the network settings on your router or computer, you’ve likely seen this number: so, you’ve seen a very common subnet mask for simple home IPv4 addresses, subnet masks are 32 bits. And just like converting an IP address into binary, you can do the same thing with a subnet example, here’s our chart from earlier:
Now let’s convert the first octet, 255:
Pretty simple, right? So any octet that’s 255 is just 11111111 in binary. This means that 255. 0 is really 11111111. 11111111. 00000000 in let’s look at a subnet mask and IP address together and calculate which parts of the IP address are the network bits and host are the two in both decimal and binary:
11000000. 10101000. 00000000. 01100101
With the two laid out like this, it’s easy to separate 192. 101 into network bits and host bits. Whenever a bit in a binary subnet mask is 1, then the same bit in a binary IP address is part of the network, not the the octet 255 is 11111111 in binary, that whole octet in the IP address is part of the network. So the first three octets, 192. 0, is the network portion of the IP address, and 101 is the host other words, if the device at 192. 101 wants to communicate with another device, using the subnet mask it knows that anything with the IP address is on the same local network. Another way to express this is with a network ID, which is just the network portion of the IP address. So the network ID of the address 192. 101 with a subnet mask of 255. 0 is it’s the same for the other devices on the local network (192. 102, 192. 103, and so on) Does CIDR Mean and What is CIDR Notation? CIDR stands for Classless Inter-Domain Routing, and is used in IPv4, and more recently, IPv6 Classless Inter-Domain RoutingCIDR was introduced in 1993 as a way to slow the usage of IPv4 addresses, which were quickly being exhausted under the older Classful IP addressing system that the internet was first built encompasses a couple of major first is Variable Length Submasking (VLSM), which basically allowed network engineers to create subnets within subnets. And those subnets could be different sizes, so there would be fewer unused IP second major concept CIDR introduced is CIDR notation is really just shorthand for the subnet mask, and represents the number of bits available to the IP address. For instance, the /24 in 192. 101/24 is equivalent to the IP address 192. 101 and the subnet mask to Calculate CIDR NoationTo figure out the CIDR notation for a given subnet mask, all you need to do is convert the subnet mask into binary, then count the number of ones or “on” digits. For example:
Because there’s three octets of ones, there are 24 “on” bits meaning that the CIDR notation is / can write it either way, but I’m sure you’ll agree that /24 is a whole lot easier to write than is usually done with an IP address, so let’s take a look at the same subnet mask with an IP address:
The first three octets of the subnet mask are all “on” bits, so that means that the same three octets in the IP address are all network ‘s take a look at the last forth octet in a bit more detail:
In this case, because all the bits for this octet in the subnet mask are “off”, we can be certain that all of the corresponding bits for this octet in the IP address are part of the you write CIDR notation it’s usually done with the network ID. So the CIDR notation of the IP address 192. 0 is 192. 0/ see more examples of how to calculate the CIDR notation and network ID for a given IP address and subnet mask, check out this video:Classful IP AddressingNow that we’ve gone over some basic examples of subnetting and CIDR, let’s zoom out and look at what’s known as Classful IP before subnetting was developed, all IP addresses fell into a particular class:Source: Subnetting for dummiesNote that there are class D and E IP addresses, but we’ll go into these in more detail a bit assful IP addresses gave network engineers a way to provide different organizations with a range of valid IP were a lot of issues with this approach that eventually lead to subnetting. But before we get into those, let’s take a closer look at the different A IP AddressesFor Class A IP addresses, the first octet (8 bits / 1 byte) represent the network ID, and the remaining three octets (24 bits / 3 bytes) are the host A IP addresses range from 1. 0 to 127. 255, with a default mask of 255. 0 (or /8 in CIDR) means that Class A addressing can have a total of 128 (27) networks and 16, 777, 214 (224-2) usable addresses per, note that the range 127. 255 within the Class A range is reserved for host loopback address (see RFC5735) B IP AddressesFor Class B IP addresses, the first two octets (16 bits / 2 bytes) represent the network ID and the remaining two octets (16 bits / 2 bytes) are the host B IP addresses range from 128. 0 to 191. 255, with a default subnet mask of 255. 0 (or /16 in CIDR) B addressing can have 16, 384 (214) network addresses and 65, 534 (216) usable addresses per C IP AddressesFor Class C IP addresses, the first three octets (24 bits / 3 bytes) represent the network ID and the last octet (8 bits / 1 bytes) is the host C IP Addresses range from 192. 0 to 223. 0 (or /24 in CIDR) C translates to 2, 097, 152 (221) networks and 254 (28-2) usable addresses per D and Class E IP AddressesThe last two classes are Class D and Class D IP addresses are reserved for multicasts. They occupy the range from 224. 0 through E IP addresses are experimental, and are anything over Issue with Classful IP AddressesThe main issue with classful IP addresses is that it wasn’t efficient, and could lead to a lot of wasted IP example, imagine that you’re part of a large organization back then. Your company has 1, 000 employees, meaning that it would fall into class if you look above, you’ll see that a class B network can support up to 65, 534 usable addresses. That’s way more than your organization would likely need, even if each employee had multiple devices with a unique there was no way your organization could fall back to class C – there just wouldn’t be enough usable IP while classful IP addresses were used around the time IPv4 addresses became widespread, it quickly became clear that a better system would be necessary to ensure we wouldn’t use up all of the ~4. 2 billion usable assful IP addresses haven’t been used since they were replaced by CIDR in 1993, and are mostly studied to understand early internet architecture, and why subnetting is important. I hope this cheat sheet has been a helpful reference for youIf you found this helpful, please share it with your friends so more people can benefit from, feel free to reach out on Twitter and let me know what you think.
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Frequently Asked Questions about proxy ip range
Are proxies IPS?
If you look up the word proxy, you’ll see that it simply means a “substitute who stands in for or represents another.” In the Internet world, a proxy is an IP address that you can use as you go on the Internet that also shields your actual IP address at that time.
What is the IP address range of IP?
An IP address is always a set of four numbers like that. Each number can range from 0 to 255. So, the full IP addressing range goes from 0.0. 0.0 to 255.255.Feb 12, 2018
What is a 24 IP range?
Subnet Cheat Sheet – 24 Subnet Mask, 30, 26, 27, 29, and other IP Address CIDR Network ReferencesCIDRSubnet mask# of IP addresses/26255.255.255.19264/25255.255.255.128128/24255.255.255.0256/23255.255.254.051229 more rows•Feb 12, 2021