How to Set Up and Use a Static IP Address

Posted on May 9, 2024 by Ana Marculescu

Are people finding it hard to reach your website or server because your IP address changed unexpectedly? Or maybe you’ve struggled with remote access to your office network because it doesn’t recognize your new IP address?

This can happen when you use a dynamic IP address that changes frequently. Dynamic IP addresses make it hard to maintain consistent connections when you connect to sites that rely on IP-based authentication. A static IP address, on the other hand, remains the same for as long as you want it to. Having a static IP address is useful when you need a steady connection, like when you’re hosting a website, running a server, or accessing local networks remotely.

In this guide, we’ll cover how a static IP address works, go over the advantages of using one, and show you how to set one up on different devices. We’ll also show you the easiest way to get a static, dedicated IP address without any manual configuration.

Want a quick way to get a static, dedicated IP address without any complicated setup? You can instantly mask your real IP address behind a dedicated one from PIA. Our token-based system means your dedicated IP won’t be tied to your email or VPN account. PIA VPN generates a random key for you to use, ensuring that your dedicated IP isn’t linked to your account in any way.

Use the same static IP address on all your devices – whether it’s your phone, tablet, computer, laptop, or even your Apple TV.


What Is a Static IP Address?

An IP address is a set of numbers that’s used to identify individual devices on a local network, and on every network connected to the internet. Some IP addresses are private (assigned by a router to each device) and some are public (assigned by an ISP to a network), and both types are usually dynamic. Dynamic allocation helps networks and ISPs manage their limited addresses effectively.

A static IP address is a fixed, permanent address assigned to a device or network that doesn’t change over time. Dynamic IP addresses are temporary and can change periodically.

ISPs manage pools of public IP addresses, allocating them to clients. If your ISP assigned a dynamic IP to your network, you can contact your ISP to request that it’s changed to a static IP address instead. They may charge extra for it, depending on your plan. Like a dynamic IP, your static IP address will always be associated with the general region you’re in, and you can’t change your IP region by requesting a new IP address.

Routers assign private IP addresses to connected devices. You can configure your router to assign specific static IP addresses to specific devices, and once set, they stay the same for as long as you want. This only works with private IP addresses, though. You can’t manually change your public IP address to a static IP.

Sometimes, you only need a static public IP address, and sometimes you need both types to be static. As an example, if you want to check your home security cameras from a distance, both your home network’s public IP address and the private IP addresses of your cameras need to be static. On the other hand, you only need a static public IP address for your home network to access your workplace’s intranet if it applies IP restriction. 

Why Use a Static IP Address?

Here are some cases when it helps to have a static IP address:

Remote Access

If you need to connect to a network remotely, having a static IP address guarantees that you’ll have uninterrupted access. People commonly get a static IP to stay connected to their company’s systems while working remotely. Many people also use one when setting up port forwarding to access devices remotely, for example, when managing their smart devices if they’re not home.

Hosting Services

If you’re running a website, game server, or any online service that people need to access regularly, having a static IP address makes it simpler for people to locate and connect to your service.

Networked Devices

Certain networked devices, such as printers, network-attached storage (NAS) devices, remote sensors, or IoT devices, may work better with a static private IP address for smooth integration within your network.

Voice-over-IP (VoIP) and Video Conferencing

Using a static IP address for VoIP calls helps to make network traffic management more efficient and prioritizes data packets, ensuring smooth audio and video streaming. It’s handy for organizations that are aiming to set up Quality of Service (QoS) features with a static IP.

Precise Geolocation

A static IP address often provides more accurate geolocation data than a dynamic IP. This helps apps find your precise location and provide customized information for your area, like traffic updates or weather forecasts.

Enhanced Security

Giving remote workers static IP addresses boosts network security because it lets a company limit access to its internal systems to approved IP addresses. This keeps sensitive data safe from unauthorized access.

Better Connectivity on Gaming Consoles

Some online games need certain ports to be opened on your router for the best connection. Having a static IP address makes it simpler to set up port forwarding because your PC or console’s IP address won’t suddenly change and no longer work with the new firewall rule. You can also use this to change your NAT type and avoid connection problems a strict or moderate NAT type may trigger with some games.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address

Note that only your ISP can assign a static public IP address to your network, typically at a high cost. If that’s what you need, you might want to consider a static, dedicated IP address from PIA VPN instead, which is more affordable. With PIA’s 30-day money-back guarantee, you can test it risk-free. 

To set up a static private IP address, simply follow the step-by-step instructions for your preferred device below. Keep in mind some steps or settings may vary slightly depending on your device and operating system.

How to Set Up a Static Private IP Address on a Router

  1. Access your router configuration interface by entering the router’s IP address into your browser. You can find this information in the router’s manual or on the router itself.
  2. Look for LAN settings or a network setup section. The exact location of these settings may vary depending on your router. Within LAN settings, find the option related to DHCP like DHCP Server or DHCP Settings.
  3. Enter the MAC address of the device to which you want to assign the static IP address. A MAC address is a unique identifier for each network device and can usually be found on a printed label attached to the device or in the device’s network settings.
  4. Enter the static IP address for the device. Ensure your chosen static IP is inside your router’s range but not overlapping with the DHCP-assigned range of IP addresses. This will help you avoid ending up with conflicting IP addresses. You’ll also need to specify the subnet mask, gateway, and DNS server information. 
  5. Save your changes. An optional step would be to restart your device to check whether the static IP address is properly assigned.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address on Windows 10

  1. Open the settings panel on your computer.
  2. Go to Network & Internet.
  3. Select your current network connection (Ethernet or Wi-Fi).
  4. Go to IP settings and click the edit button.
  5. Select Manual from the dropdown list.
  6. Toggle on the IPv4 switch.
  7. Enter your desired static IP address, subnet mask, and default gateway. Optionally, add your preferred DNS server addresses too. You can find all these details by typing “ipconfig/all” into Command Prompt.
  1. Hit Save when you’re done.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address on Windows 11

  1. Open the settings panel on your computer.
  2. Go to Network & internet.
  3. Select your current network connection (Ethernet or Wi-Fi).
  4. Go to IP assignment and click the Edit button.
  5. Select Manual from the dropdown list.
  6. Toggle on the IPv4 switch.
  7. Enter your desired static IP address, subnet mask, and default gateway. Optionally, add your preferred DNS server addresses too. You can find all these details by typing “ipconfig/all” into Command Prompt.
  8. Hit Save when you’re done.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address on macOS

  1. Open the Apple menu. 
  2. Select System Settings and click Network.
  1. Select your network connection (Wi-Fi or Ethernet).
  2. Click Details.
  3. Choose TCP/IP.
  1. Click Configure IPv4 and choose Manually from the dropdown menu. 
  2. Enter your chosen static IP address in the IP address field. Optionally, add your preferred DNS server addresses in the DNS tab. 
  3. Click OK when you’re finished.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address on iOS

  1. Open Settings and go to Wi-Fi.
  2. Select your current network connection to view the available settings. 
  3. Go to IPv4 Address and tap Configure IP.
  4. Choose Manual.
  5. Enter your chosen static IP address and subnet mask.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address on Android

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap on Wi-Fi.
  3. Tap on your current connection. 
  4. Go to IP settings or Advanced (the menu’s name may differ depending on your phone). 
  5. Tap on IP settings and choose Static from the dropdown list. 
  1. Enter your desired static IP address, gateway, and network prefix length. Optionally, add your preferred DNS server addresses. 
  1. Hit Save when you’re finished.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address on Linux

Most of the popular Linux distributions let you set up a static IP address via the GUI. 

  1. Open your network manager (you can do this from your main men or right-click on the Network icon in the system tray area).
  2. Click the settings gear icon next to your current connection.
  1. Go to the IPv4 tab and select Manual from the drop-down menu on the right (default setting is Automatic (DHCP)).
  1. Enter your static IP address, netmask, and gateway details.
  2. Click Apply.

How to Set Up a Static IP Address on a PS5 Gaming Console

  1. Look for the settings option on your PS5 and go to Network.
  1. Choose Settings and select Set Up Internet Connection
  1. Go to Advanced Settings and enter your preferred static IP address for the console. Make sure it’s within the range of your router’s subnet and not already in use by another device on the network. Enter the subnet mask, gateway, and DNS server details.
  1. Save your settings and restart your console to check whether the changes were applied correctly. 

What Is a Dedicated IP Address?

Even though the two terms are often used interchangeably, a dedicated IP address is technically a static IP address that’s assigned to a single account or network. This distinction is typically only relevant to organizations as some static IP addresses are shared. 

Getting a dedicated IP address is typically the better option for the average person who wants a static IP. This is because some VPN services let you rent a dedicated IP address as an add-on to your subscription. Even with the add-on, you can easily find a cheaper VPN subscription than what ISPs will normally charge you for a static IP address.

Getting a dedicated IP address from a VPN service comes with multiple benefits. The VPN encrypts your internet connection for added protection, lets you choose your virtual location, and gives you an anonymous IP address that nobody else shares.

A dedicated IP address stays the same even if you disconnect or switch devices. Plus, a dedicated IP address belongs to a single person: you. It’s exclusively yours and isn’t shared with other VPN users. Since it’s not shared, you’re less likely to encounter issues like CAPTCHA requests and IP blacklisting due to others’ actions. With a dedicated IP, you can enjoy reliable access to online services like online banking and avoid any potential restrictions associated with shared IP addresses.

What’s the Difference between Static IPs and Dedicated IPs?

Static IPs and dedicated IPs are similar in that both help you get a fixed IP address. That said, they differ in how they’re used. You can get a static public IP address from your ISP at an extra cost, but some static IPs are still shared between people. This mainly depends on your ISP’s policies and your contract. Dedicated IPs belong to individuals and won’t be given to anyone else until they end their contract. 

A service like a VPN can give you a dedicated IP address, and it will function exactly like a static IP address provided by your ISP as long as the VPN is on. If you need a static IP address for something like port forwarding, you’ll need to configure the VPN on your router as it won’t work when running the VPN from a device.

How to Get a Dedicated (Static) IP Address with No Setup

If you’re struggling with setting up a static IP address on your device, there’s an easy way to get one. You don’t even need to worry about going through a manual setup process either. 

PIA offers static, dedicated IP addresses you can purchase as an add-on to your VPN subscription. Some dedicated IP addresses can be connected to your email, making it possible to identify you. But that’s not the case with PIA VPN. We’ve created an anonymous token-based system that doesn’t link a dedicated IP to your account. You can generate an anonymous key on the PIA website and enter it into your app. This will transform your key into a unique IP address. Our token-based process ensures that no one, not even us, can link it to your VPN account.

PIA VPN’s dedicated IP address can be used on as many devices as you want. Plus, you have a wide range of countries to choose from for your new static IP, including Australia, Germany, Canada, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, Belgium, Sweden, the US, and the UK.

The Advantages of Using a Dedicated IP Address

Using a dedicated IP address can prevent security alerts and account limitations caused by frequent IP address changes. This is helpful when you’re working remotely or banking, gaming, gambling, or trading online. With a dedicated IP address, you’re less likely to be marked as a bot, so you don’t need to do CAPTCHA checks as often or deal with unnecessary blocks, making browsing a less frustrating experience.

Sign up for PIA VPN’s dedicated IP add-on and get the same IP address across all your devices, like your phone, tablet, computer, or laptop. You can even use it on your Apple TV. PIA VPN is the first VPN provider to offer dedicated IP support for Apple TV. This means you can enjoy secure, fast access to your favorite streaming services using an IP address uniquely assigned to you. This way, you won’t have to struggle with false reports of suspicious login attempts or CAPTCHAs. 

FAQ

What do you do with a static IP address?

People typically get a static IP address to maintain a stable connection in situations like website or server hosting, maintaining remote access to company networks, hosting VoIP conferences, as well as enabling remote access to IoT devices or optimizing gaming sessions with port forwarding. 

When you sign up for PIA VPN and get a dedicated static IP address alongside your subscription, you can have a fixed IP address and improved privacy and security for your connection.

How do I connect to a device with a static IP address?

Every device has a slightly different setup process but requires more or less the same information. Start by looking for an IP address configuration option in your device’s network settings. You’ll need to enter an IP address within a range supported by your router, a subnet mask, default gateway, and DNS server addresses. 

Can I create my own static IP address?

You can assign static IP addresses to any of your devices (e.g. mobile, laptop, PC) via their network settings or your router’s admin settings. Just ensure the IP address you pick hasn’t been given to another device on your network. It needs to be unique within your network to avoid IP address conflicts. 

For detailed instructions, check out our step-by-step guides on creating your own static IP address for your devices. 

How do I assign an IP address to my router?

To set up an IP address on your router, log into your router’s configuration settings. You can do this by entering its IP address into your browser’s address bar – this IP address should be listed somewhere on the router or in its manual. 

You might need a username and password to log in – these are also usually provided in the manual or on the router itself. Navigate to a section called LAN Settings or Network Setup, locate the DHCP option, and then find the setting to assign a static IP address. Enter the MAC address of the device and your desired IP address, ensuring it’s within the router’s range but not conflicting with DHCP-assigned addresses. Save your settings.

What happens if I use a static IP address?

Having a static public IP makes it easier for cybercriminals to track you online and link that IP address to your real location and identity. This means you could face increased exposure to snooping and cyber attacks.  

PIA’s dedicated IP is a static IP address that can’t be traced back to you. PIA VPN uses an anonymous token-based system that gives you a unique static IP address but keeps your identity and real location private. 

Why would you want a dedicated IP address?

Some online services might block your account if they notice your IP address changes repeatedly or that you’re using a shared IP address. A dedicated IP address is a static IP address that helps you access your online accounts (like banking, gaming, and trading) without interruption. This means you can avoid ending up on IP blacklists and getting regular security triggers like CAPTCHAs. 

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