What is an IP address? What is it used for?

Here is what I found as What  an IP address is and what it's used for? Can you offer your opinion to the below explanation.  Thank you in advance.


An IP address is a numerical label assigned each device on a particular network that is using the Internet protocol for communication.  An IP address is similar to a home address; it lets other networks and host know where you can be located.  The IP address is 32 bits long and is usually expressed in a doted decimal notation.  In this notation, the IP address is broken into four 8-bit segments.  Each segment’s bits are treated as a binary number and are converted into a decimal number.  The four segment decimal numbers are written out with dots (periods) between them.  So 128.171.17.13 is a typical IP address in dotted decimal notation.  There are two types of IP addresses, one is dynamic IP address.  This is when the DHCP server assigns or gives the client PC and IP address to use.  This IP address is a static IP, which is a set IP address that doesn’t change, these are usually used by your host servers, like a Bellevue.edu, it always remains the same.  The IP address is like you’re own personal address to where your computer can be located in order to receive information from other servers or computers.
 
MelbutAsked:
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
>>> An IP address is a numerical label assigned each device on a particular network that is using the Internet protocol for communication.  An IP address is similar to a home address; it lets other networks and host know where you can be located

That is good enough for most purposes. Of course, there are details, but this is what an IP address is.

.... Thinkpads_User
Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
That sounds right to me also.  Like @thinkpads_user said, there are more details for specific things.
MelbutAuthor Commented:
About DHCP of the original comment, using DHCP is a requirement for using dynamic IP addresses. However, DHCP is also used for tell hosts their static IP address. This is beneficial because all IP addresses are centrally assigned by the DHCP server. Hence when a static IP does change (e.g. because a new static address was assigned or you are restructuring your intranet subnets) the sys admins only need to make the changes on the DHCP server rather than reconfiguring each host individually. The concept of dynamic IP addresses is really the result of ISPs starting to sell dial-up services to the masses in the 90s. If you are an ISP and you have 1000 customers but only 100 modems it doesn't make sense to assign a static IP address to every customer. Instead, you get 100 addresses and assign them to your modems.

Do you agree or disagree and why regarding the above above explanation on DHCP?  I am studying this subject and looking for others thoughts. I appreciate all the information being given.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Static IP addressing is normally used for fixed devices (Servers, routers, printers and such like). Use DHCP for the rest (ordinary computers).

Since this is homework, we can only guide you. But there is enough here for you to dig into.

.... Thinkpads_User
Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
An IP address is a numerical label assigned each device on a particular network that is using the Internet protocol for communication.  

*to any network device* but what's meant by "particular network" is a question.

An IP address is similar to a home address; it lets other networks and host know where you can be located.  

*Like a post office box number.

The IP address is 32 bits long and is usually expressed in a doted [sic] er ... "dotted" decimal notation.  In this notation, the IP address is broken into four 8-bit segments.  Each segment’s bits are treated as a binary number and are converted into a decimal number.

*with maximum value of 255 due to the 8 bits.

The four segment decimal numbers are written out with dots (periods) between them.  So 128.171.17.13 is a typical IP address in dotted decimal notation.  

There are two types of IP addresses,

*there are two ways that IP addresses are assigned.  I don't think that makes one or the other a "type".  But that's just a language preference because once they are assigned, they act the same.  So, no "types".

one is dynamic IP address.  This is when the [sic} "a" DHCP server assigns or gives the client PC and [sic] "an" IP address to use.  This IP address is a static IP, which is a set IP address that doesn’t change, these are usually used by your host servers, like a Bellevue.edu, it always remains the same.  The IP address is like you’re own personal address to where your computer can be located in order to receive information from other servers or computers.

*There are two types of IP addresses; Public and Private.  You can look that up.  They are dealt with differently in some situations.  (Internet routers aren't supposed to forward packets destined for private addresses).

*There are two categories of IP addresses.  Addresses in the same subnet as a particular computer and addresses outside of that subnet.  They are dealt with differently.  Like a Zip code is either the same as your own or it isn't.  If it isn't then mail you send is going to go out of town .. so to speak .. or at least to a different neighborhood in the same town.   Both public and private IP addresses are split up into subnets.  "Subnet" is somewhat analogous to Zip code.

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MelbutAuthor Commented:
That's exactly what I am looking for is the guidance on if I am understanding the information correctly and for others thoughts as well.  Thank you for your feedback.
MelbutAuthor Commented:
I appreciate how you broke my explanation down.  Very helpful.
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