IP addressing means trouble with PC?

This conversation strikes me as being a little odd. It’s kind of right but mostly not.

Lets just say, we have recently signed up for talk talk, and have had an absolute nightmare with customer support.

We had a customer support rep telling us that because our IP address started with a certain number, we had to contact our computer manufacturer to resolve the issue. This is when the net connection was working before we switched to talk talk šŸ˜¦

From Matt

The reason this is a bit strange and seems like a bit of a quick way to get someone off the phone is the way IP addressing works.

There are several different kinds of IP addresses. You guys don’t really want to know the nitty gritty. For your purposes, they can be broken down into two different types: public and private.

A private IP address is something like what you probably have at work. It might start with 192 or 10, very occasionally 128. These addresses are reserved for private networks. When you go out onto the Internet; a proxy, firewall or router will have a different public IP address. This is called Network Address Translation.

If you’re using a different kind of router, other than the USB thing Talk Talk supplies, you may have one of these IP addresses as well. Your router gets its public IP address from the Talk Talk network. Ideally, what should happen, is your router will get its IP from Talk Talk and give your PC a private IP address.

The settings might look something like this if you’re using a different kind of router:
PC: 192.168.1.1
Router: 84.123.45.6

If you’re using the +USB thing, they might look like this:
PC: 84.123.45.6

If you’re using the USB thing and you’re not getting an IP address from Talk Talk, it might look like this:
169.123.45.6

The latter is an APIPA address. That stands for Automatic Private IP Addressing. Windows gives your PC an address beginning with 169 when it can’t get one from your ISP. That means Talk Talk isn’t giving out IP addresses and there’s something wrong with your connection.

Your PC can still connect to the Internet but is masked from the rest of it. Confusing, I know.

But if they ever tell you that your IP means there’s a problem with your PC, ask for second line support. They either don’t know, or they’re trying to get you off the phone.

What is APIPA?

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