What are packets, routers and IP address?

Q1. What are packets and routers?

Q2. What is an IP address?

Q3. Describe the advantages of private and public IP addresses?

There are many parts to creating a network for any size business or even just a home or small office. When connecting these computers into a network, one must think of how the data is transferred from one computer to another. Getting hands on experience is the best way to learn any new techniques. This is very crucial information if one wishes to know how their information is being delivered over the Internet. This is where IP addresses come into play.

When you have mail delivered to your house, the post office will not know where to take the mail unless you give them your home address. This is the same concept for IP Addresses. However, there are different levels to an IP Address. There are Public IP Addresses and Private IP Addresses.

Public IP Addresses are used to navigate around in what today is known as the Internet. The Internet consists of millions of on line web pages and just as many on line web servers to hold these web pages. In order to find these different servers, or computers, they assign IP Addresses to these computers. For example, everyone who has been on the Internet and has a pulse knows about www.google.com. Google has it’s own IP Address so that people can find it. It’s IP Address is 173.194.35.104.

If you wish to find the IP Address of website on line, you can open up your command prompt on your computer and type in ‘ping www.domain.com’ and it will send ping packets to website as well as translate the website into an IP Address according to your DNS. For example, if you type in ‘ping www.google.com’ and it will display information on google.com.

The Public IP Addresses consist of four 3 digit numbers from 0 – 255. The highest possible IP Address is 255.255.255.255. Within these different combinations of IP Addresses, there lie Private IP Addresses. These IP Addresses fall into three groups. These groups are:

> 10.0.0.0 – 10.255.255.255
> 172.16.0.0 – 172.31.255.255
> 192.168.0.0 – 192.168.255.255
(List from http://www.duxcw.com/faq/network/privip.htm)

Private IP Addresses are different from Public IP Addresses in the sense that they are not assigned to computers that can be located or reached over the largest network in the world, or the Internet. These IP Addresses are usually assigned by a router on a personal or smaller network such as a home or office network. The individual routers that are routing the packets from one computer to another are responsible for assigning these Private IP Addresses. For example, My router at home can assign the address 192.168.1.2 to my Personal PC and 192.168.1.3 to my Laptop, but going on line and typing in these addresses will not lead you to my computer.

The reason for the Private IP Addresses is to save or conserve the use of the IPv4 Addresses. Every separate network can assign the same Private IP Addresses to different computers because these networks are not connected. For Example, My computer could be 192.168.1.2 on my network and your computer could also be 192.168.1.2 but on your network. Usually the Router is given a Public IP Addresses and it can route packets, depending on the source information or port forwarding information, to the different computers on the network.

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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What are packets, routers and IP address?

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