What is an IP Address? IPv4 vs IPv6


What is an IP Address?

An Internet Protocol address (IP address) is a numerical label assigned to each device connected to a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication. An IP address serves two main functions: host or network interface identification and location addressing.

What is IPv4?

Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4) defines an IP address as a 32-bit number, which limits the address space to 4294967296 (232) addresses. In this space, some addresses are reserved for special purposes such as private networks (~18 million addresses) and multicast addressing (~270 million addresses).

What is IPv6?

Because of the growth of the Internet and the depletion of available IPv4 addresses, a new version of IP (IPv6), using 128 bits for the IP address, was standardized in 1998.

IPv6 thus providing up to 2128 (approximately 3.403×1038) addresses. This is deemed sufficient for the foreseeable future.

More about networking?

More about IP addresses and networking can be found here.