Just like your physical address in real life, your IP address identifies where you are on a network system so that you can send or receive information via the internet. And just as you can change your current location, you can change your IP address when you know how to change IP address so, you don’t have to stick to the one you have.
But before you learn how to change your IP address, you need to know some network basics and reasons why you may need to change your IP address.
In this post, we will discuss the reasons to change IP your address and give you the instructions on how to change IP addresses. Now, let’s dive right in!
- You should be able to differentiate between a dynamic IP address and a static IP address. A dynamic IP address is known as the automatic assignment or allocation of an IP address to a device in a network connection by the network. The IP address of the user or device can change (IP is not fixed); this makes dynamic IP address easier to set up and control than the static IP address. A static IP address, on the other hand, is the assignment or allocation of a fixed IP address to a device or computer by a user and not the network. For instance, a computer with a static IP of 126.96.36.199 will never change unless you do so manually.
- Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) is in charge of allocating or assigning a network address to you, which is seen by the internet whenever you’re online. When you’re on a Wide Area Network (WAN) or Local Area Network (LAN), the corporate or home router allocates the IP addresses.
- If you’d love to use a static IP or choose an IP address, then you need to know the netmask and how ranges of IP address are handled. Allocating a static IP address that is incompatible with the netmask or the configuration of your network to a device will prevent the device from communicating properly with the network.
Reasons to Hide or Change IP Address
Your IP address contains certain information about you, which includes:
- The country you’re in
- The city where you’re surfing the web from
- Your region or state
- Your region’s area code
- The name of your Internet Service Provider
- The best guess of your location’s longitude and latitude
- Any services running on your IP
This information can be used to monitor all the activities you carry out while you’re online. So, hiding your IP or simply changing it is a good way to avoid being tracked by hackers, social media, advertisers, and other companies.
Also, when you travel abroad, you may not be able to access your favorite website, email, entertainment, and local news from your current location due to geo-restrictions. By changing or hiding your IP address, you can bypass the geo-blocks, stream faster, avoid ISP throttling as well as leaving behind a digital footprint.
How to Change IP Address
Follow the instructions below to learn how to change IP addresses.
1. Use VPN (The best way)
Using an IP changer or VPN is the best way to hide your IP address. With a VPN or privacy app, you can change your IP address without having to change your ISP, move from a location to another, turn off your connection or release IP and shut down your system overnight.
Apart from that, you will browse the web securely and avoid trackers as well as leaving behind a digital footprint that can be used to monitor your online activities. A VPN also allows you to bypass restrictions and access social media, local news, web contents, and entertainments of another location without having to change your current physical location.
2. Change your physical location
This is one of the easiest ways to change your IP address without having to fiddle with your router or device’s settings. When you connect to the internet at home, the IP address that will be assigned to you would be different from the one allocated to you when you connect at your workplace or any other location. Similarly, you will have a different IP address when you connect anywhere with Wi-Fi. So, you can go to a local shop with free Wi-Fi around you to register and use a different IP address.
3. Use a proxy server
If you want to change the IP address of your device so that you can access web-based pages and forums, using a proxy server might be all you need to do. A proxy server will redirect your browsing activities and allow you to browse the internet using a different IP identity. You don’t have to change your ISP; you only have to go online and look for “list of proxies” or “free proxies” and select one from the list.
4. Reset your router or modem
Resetting your router or modem is another way to change your IP address.
Unplug or turn off the modem or router for about 5 minutes and turn it on or plug it back in. (You don’t need to shut your PC down). Once you plug in or switch your modem or router back on, it should register with another IP address.
If that doesn’t work, you’re probably using a static IP address or one with a long lease time. This lease time is the amount of time an Internet Service Provider determines a particular IP address will be allocated to a user. Your IP lease time could be a couple of minutes, hours, days, or months. Your ISP can set a long IP lease time for you to make it look like you’re using or being allocated with a static IP address.
If your IP address has a long lease time, you need to unplug your modem or switch off your router and leave it overnight. Check your IP the next morning to see the one you’re currently using.
If you’re the technical type, try the following steps to release IP:
- Open your system command prompt
- Type in “ipconfig /release” on the command line without the quotes and press enter
- Shut down your PC
- Turn all Ethernet switches/hubs off
- Switch off DSL/cable modem
- Leave them overnight
- In the following day, switch everything back on
- Login into the admin console of your router
- Release your IP address
- Switch off the router, DSL/cable modem, and the Ethernet switches/hubs
- Leave it overnight and check your IP on the next day
5. Contact your ISP
If the above suggestions did not work, you have a static IP or an IP address with a very long lease time. Contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and ask them to change your IP for you or your IP lease time, i.e., how long you need to turn off your connection for your IP to change.