An IP address is a set of numbers that is used to identify a local network or a device on the internet. Every device, including your mobile phone, tablet, etc., will have a unique IP address. IP addresses these devices are assigned are local IP addresses that will change when the DHCP lease expires.
On the other hand, Public IP addresses are dynamically assigned by ISPs to your modem. When you visit a website from a device connected to that modem, the Public IP of the network will be visible to the website and not the device’s Local IP address. Likewise, there are also Static IP addresses that are fixed.
Now that you got a basic idea of IP addresses, read on to know how to change your IP address.
How to Change Your IP Address?
There isn’t just one way to change your IP address, but there are more ways to change it. For instance, your IP address will change when you connect to a different network. But you cannot always switch to a different network whenever you want to change your IP address and it is also not practically possible. You can change your IP address manually and automatically, as well. Read on to know what are the ways to change your IP address.
Use Proxy or a VPN to Change Your IP Address
A proxy, which is nothing but a “substitute,” will let you browse the web using a different IP address. It will reroute your internet traffic through one of its secure servers by acting as an intermediary between the device and the server. The website you are accessing will not see your original IP address as your traffic will look like it is originating from the proxy. No matter where you live, you can access geo-restricted websites from a different location by using a proxy server based on that location. For example, if you live in the UK and you wish to access a website geo-restricted to just the US, you can use a US-based proxy server to access it. However, proxies are not considered secure by many, as ISPs can see the websites accessed using a proxy server.
VPNs, on the other hand, are similar to proxies but more secure. In addition to letting you change your IP address, a VPN will also secure your connection. It offers total encryption for all your network traffic, which makes it a better option when compared to proxies. As your traffic will be encrypted, your ISP will not be able to see what you do online. The same applies to other third parties, as well and no one can see your online activities. If you like to know more about VPNs, you can check out our VPN blog to learn how VPNs work. You can either set up a VPN manually or just download the VPN app to get started.
Change IP Address via System Settings
The most common way to change your IP address is by changing it via system settings. We have listed below the steps to change your Local IP for Windows, Mac, etc.
- Press Win+R and type in ncpa.cpl and then hit Enter.
- Right-click on your network connections and choose properties.
- Now, choose Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) and hit Properties.
- You will see that the Obtain an IP address automatically option is automatically selected here.
- To change your IP address, execute the following commands in a command prompt window
- If you would like to manually assign an IP address, you can select the option that says Use the following IP Address.
Follow the steps below to change your Local IP address on macOS.
- To go to System Preferences, click on the Apple logo at the top left corner.
- Go to Network and select the network to which you are connected, from the left pane.
- Click on Advanced.
- To automatically change your IP address, go to the TCP/IP tab and click on Renew DHCP Lease.
- To manually change your IP address, choose Manually from the dropdown menu beside Configure IPv6.
- Save the changes you just made by hitting OK.
Quick steps to change your IP address on Android.
- Open Settings on your Android device and go to WiFi.
- Tap the little arrow mark next to your WiFi network and click on Forget Network.
- Now, you can reconnect to your WiFi network. When you reconnect, you will be assigned a new IP address.
- If you would like to manually assign an IP address, you can toggle the button beside Use Static IP.
- Save the changes before you close the Settings tab.
To change your Local IP address on iOS, follow the quick and easy steps below.
- Open the Settings on your iOS device and tap on WiFi.
- Select the WiFi network to which you have connected and tap on Configure IP.
- Change the setting to Manual and assign an IP address and save the changes you just made.
It is pretty simple to change your IP address on Ubuntu.
- To open the terminal, hit Ctrl+Alt+T.
- Execute the following commands
sudo dhclient – r
- From the top right, right-click on the network icon to assign a Static IP manually.
- Select your network and click on Settings.
- To change the setting to Manual, switch to the IPv4 tab.
- Now, type in the IP Address, Netmask, Gateway, and DNS and click on Apply, to save the changes.
Use the Tor Browser to Change Your IP Address
A free, open-source browser, the Tor browser can hide your IP address whenever you browse the web using this browser. Also known as the Onion router, this browser will bounce network traffic through several nodes and the traffic will finally hit the internet through the Exit Nodes. The websites you visit will not see your original IP address but the IP of the Exit Node. Likewise, your ISP will not be able to track your browsing history and they can only see that you are browsing through the Tor browser. This way, the Tor browser lets users change their IP addresses and it is a great choice for online privacy.
However, there are certain drawbacks, as well. It is quite slow and it does not encrypt network traffic. Moreover, security and privacy are limited to just the Tor browser and the Tor network cannot secure other applications you run on your device.
Unplug Your Modem
ISPs assign dynamic or static IP addresses. If your IP is dynamic, your Public IP and the Local IP will have DHCP lease times. Lease times might last between 8 and 24 hours. Lease times may not renew every time you unplug your modem, but there are chances of it ending when your modem is unplugged. If the lease time renews when your modem is unplugged, the moment you plug in your modem and when it connects to a DHCP server, it will receive a new Public IP. The same applies to other devices you use, where your mobile phone will receive a new Local IP if your phone disconnects from the router when the lease ends and reconnects when the lease renews. This way, your IP will automatically change whenever you unplug your modem and replug it again. You can also get in touch with your ISP for Static IPs.
Do You Know How to Find Your IP Address?
The steps to find your Local IP are not the same for all platforms. Follow the steps below for your specific device to find your IP address.
- To find your IP on Windows, press Win+R and type in cmd.
- Hit Enter and type ipconfig.
- You will see your IP address once you hit Enter.
- Your Local IP address is the IPv4 address.
- Click on the Apple icon at the top left corner and click on System Preferences and then go to Network.
- Here, you will see your WiFi network on the left pane. Select the network and click on Advanced.
- You will see your Local IP and Router IP in the TCP/IP tab.
- Open the Settings app on your Android device and go to WiFi.
- Tap on the Settings cog (tiny arrow symbol) next to the WiFi network.
- You will now see the Local IP and Router IP.
- On your iOS device, go to the Settings app and open WiFi.
- Click on the WiFi network and you will see the Local IP (IP Address) and Router IP.
- Head to Settings and go to Network and click on the Settings cog beside the name of your WiFi network. You will see your Local IP and Router IP here.
Public IP Address
While the steps to find your Local IP address on different platforms are different, the way to find your Public IP is the same for all platforms. You can use websites like WhatIsMyIPAddress to find your public IP address or find it from the router setup page. Follow the steps below to find your Public IP address from the router setup page.
- Open Chrome or any browser you use and type in your router’s IP address in the URL bar.
- You will be prompted to provide the login credentials of your router.
- Once you type in the login details, you can go to the Router or Wireless Status tab. Here is where you will see your Public Address.