Many people do not realize that their computer IP address is different from their Internet IP Address.
If you are on a network (either at home or work) more than likely you are behind a router and your computer network adapter card (NIC) has been assigned a "local" IP address.
When you access the Internet from your computer, which is behind a router, and check your IP address at a site such as whatismyipaddress.com, what you are actually seeing is the Internet IP address that is assigned to the router (provided by your ISP), not your computer IP address.
The only time your computer NIC adapter IP address can be the same as the Internet IP address is when your computer is connected directly to the Internet.
So now that you know the difference, how do I find my computer IP address? Here's three ways to find it…
1 – From The Command Line
You can easily see the IP address, at the command prompt, using the following command:
To open a command prompt, click on Start \ Run and enter ipconfig in the run box.
NOTE: All screen shots are from Vista and XP will look similar.
If your computer has more than one NIC adapter, you can view the IP Address for all NIC's using the same command with the following switch:
The above command will display all network adapter settings (NIC) similar to the above screen shot. Only the connected NIC's will have IP Address information (the disabled NIC's will show without any settings configured).
2 – From Windows GUI
If you are not comfortable using Windows command prompt, there are a few ways to see the IP address from the GUI.
The easiest method (in XP or Vista) is to click on Start \ Run and enter ncpa.cpl in the run box.
Then right click on the network adapter that has the active connection and select Status.
In the Status page, click on the Details… button to view the IP Address assigned to the NIC adapter.
You will then be able to see the IP address assigned to the NIC.
3 – SIW Utility
Instead of poking around your computer to find it's IP address, you can use the informative utility SIW (System Information for Windows), that requires no installation, and will display the IP address assigned to your network adapter card on your computer.
If you don't have the utility already, just download SIW, and unzip it.
Then double click on siw.exe and navigate to the Hardware section and click on Network Adapters.
Here, you will see all network adapters (NIC) installed in your computer. To find the active NIC, look at the Status field to see if the value is "Connected". Just below that field, you can view it's assigned IP Address.
Remember, computers don't have an IP address. Network Adapter Cards (NIC) do. So it's possible that you can have more than one IP Address assigned for use with your Computer.