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Changing Your IP Address in Windows 7

written by: •edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 3/8/2010

Most home networks use DHCP, which manages IP addressing for you. Either a router or your PC will often just handle them without intervention. There will be times when you need to manually change your IP in Windows 7, here's how.

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    Do You Need to Change Your IP Address?

    There are many reasons why you might want to change your IP in Windows 7. You might be configuring an internal network, adding machines to a network, consolidating addresses, or your IP address might be blacklisted.

    Your IP address is either supplied by your home router or your ISP. If you’re in the latter category then you’re not really going to be able to change the IP address of your computer and keep the internet connection. If you need to change the address here then you need to reset your modem or contact your ISP. Turning the modem off and leaving it off overnight will often cause a new dynamic IP address to be assigned once you turn the modem back on.

    If you have a router that is DHCP capable then it will control the IP addresses from a range you set. It is still possible to manually assign a specific IP within that range to a computer on the network.

    Dynamic Host Control Protocol is a system that automatically assigns an IP address to a client computer so it can use the internet. It can either work in conjunction with a router, or within the computer itself. Manually assigning an IP means that DHCP doesn’t have to get an address, which shaves off a few seconds at boot, and allows you to get straight on the net if you use Sleep or Hibernate modes.

    It only works on an internal network though, so if you’re behind a router or internet connection sharing, this will work fine. If you’re connected straight to the internet via a modem, it won’t.

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    To manually change your IP in Windows 7, follow these instructions.

    Go to the Control Panel, then Network and Internet, Network and Sharing Center. Then choose either:

    Change adapter settings in the left menu, then right click your network adapter and select properties.


    Local Area Connection on the right hand side and click Properties.

    Highlight IPv4 in the window you now see then click Properties underneath it. This will present you with the IP address settings screen. Most computers will have this set to automatic as DHCP is enabled by default.

    Manual IP Address Set 

    All you need to do here is to change it to “Use the following IP address" and fill in the address, subnet mask and default gateway. You can then choose whether to manually assign a DNS server or not.

    Once you close those windows, the system should manually assign the IP address. You might lose your network connection for a couple of seconds, then it should come straight back. If it doesn’t then check the IP address you chose to double check it’s in the range.

    As I mentioned, if you’re behind a router, you will have a pool of IP addresses to choose from. Make sure you either change the pool to one that includes the IP you want, or to use an IP address in that pool. If you do neither, you won’t get a network connection.


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