Internet Protocol (IP)
What is IP
The term "IP is widely used in the context of computer networks. IP stands for Internet Protocol, and it is a set of rules which decides how the data packets will transfer through the network. It provides us with an ability to uniquely identify each network device on the internet or in the network. We will go through the details of IP, types of IP and other related terms to it, and understand why it's a necessary component of the network communication. IP is a collection of rules called protocol. These Protocols define some standards according to which the devices on the network work and the data packets transfer over the network. In this era, there are several manufacturers of network devices, and each of them has their technology, operating systems, and architectures which they use to build their tools, but when they run over the network, they have to follow some standards which are maintained by Internet Protocol (IP). All the devices route their packets based on their IP Addresses.
IP Address and its use
Technically, an IP address is a unique 32-bit number assigned to a device when connected to a network. As the address of a home is used to identify the specific physical location, in a similar way IP address works as the unique identification for a device. Using this address, device signifies the address of both the sender and receiver of data packets. A network data packet is a unit of data that carries control information and user data over the IP based network. When data is sent from one device to the other device, your PC uses DNS server to look up a hostname to find its IP address. Without an IP address, a device will not be identified over the network and cannot communicate. However, this can vary according to the device and the network. At the same time, your PC can have more than one IP addresses. One for the LAN and other for the Internet. These IP addresses are further divided into two main types:
Static IP Address
As the name represents, the static IP addresses are the type of IP addresses which never change once they are assigned to a device over a network. Static IP addresses are not so expensive but are open to the security threats for those who want to hide on the network. They are mostly used by small scale web, gaming, and email servers.
Dynamic IP Address
On the other hand, Dynamic IP addresses are those IP addresses which changes every time the device logs into the network. The large-scale organizations mostly use dynamic IP addresses because it is more secure than static IP and does not remain the same; hence the location cannot be traced.
Static IP vs Dynamic IP which is better?
As discussed earlier, the nature of the networked environment decides, which type of IP it must use. If there is no concern with the security issues and no need of hiding yourself from being traced through the network, then static IP will work fine for you. But, if you want to protect your identity over the web and go through the secure network traffic environment, then Dynamic IP will be a better option for you. Generally, browsing on the internet, mailing or downloading files is carried out by dynamic IP, on the other hand, FTP, servers, and voice calls through the internet are carried out by Static IP. Standard schemes like IPV4 and IPV6 are used to generate IP addresses for the network devices. These IP versions are detailed below.
IPV4 Address (Internet Protocol Version 4)
IPV4 (Internet Protocol Version 4) is the fourth version of the Internet Protocol (IP) used to generate addresses to assign to the devices across a network. IPV4 uses 32-bit address structure to connect the devices to the internet. 32-bit address means almost 4 billion addresses can be generated. Statistics show that with such a massive growth of internet devices, IPV4 will not be enough to address all the devices because personal computers, laptops, smartphones like devices uses IPV4 to connect to the internet. To overcome this limitation, Internet Protocol was revised, and a new version IPV6 was designed to generate addresses.
IPV6 Address (Internet Protocol Version 6)
IPV6 address (Internet Protocol Version 6) is a new internet addressing mechanism being implemented to meet the need for more internet addresses. IPV6 is a modified form of IPV6 and allows the number of hosts as well as data traffic transmitted. IPV6 address is also called IPng (internet protocol next generation) and is being deployed. There are some advantages of IPV4 over the IPV6 such as No DHCP and NAT, True Quality of Service (QoS).
What is TCP/IP
TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) is the underlying protocol of the internet. It makes sure that the connection is reliable and there is no packets loss. In case of failure of packets, it retransmits the data to maintain the reliability of the connection. Two computers connected for the sake of sending a message or exchanging information, are provided with a copy of the TCP/IP program. TCP/IP has two layers: Higher Layer is TCP and is responsible for assembling the data into smaller parts and reassembling all the pieces into original data while on the other hand IP layer is responsible for managing the address part of the packet and makes sure that the data is sent to the right destination. Due to the reliability of this protocol, it is used.
UDP (User Datagram Protocol) is a protocol alternative to TCP and allows the data transmission without checking it for errors. It compromises on the reliability and let the drop of packets, but gives better latency rate. Due to this, it is used for gaming and online streaming.
Internet Protocol and Internet Protocol Addresses are the core part of Computer Networks and Communications. They provide useful information about their corresponding devices and which is useful as well as a hole for security threats. Dynamic IP and Static IP are selected according to the environment, and the mode of data packets transmission is defined by TCP/IP or UDP/IP modules.