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Although most people are aware that their computer has an IP address, many have no idea of its actual purpose. IP stands for “Internet Protocol.” The address section refers to the unique numbers that are linked to your online activity. An IP address is essentially an online passport that communicates with the internet to let it know where to send data, emails and other important information.
While the exact workings of an IP address are quite complex, the most important thing to understand is that it is the key part of a computer or smart device that connects or communicates with another device via the internet. IP addresses are the reason that internet-based devices can be located and differentiated.
As modern printers are web-integrated, they also have IP addresses. Printer IPs are particularly important in offices, as the computers and printers on the network must differentiate one from another to send data accurately. So, you may be wondering, how do I find my printer’s IP address?
How to Find a Printer’s IP Address
There are several different ways to find a printer’s IP address. Depending on the type of computer or printer you have, specific approaches may be more suitable than others. There are two main types of printers:
- Inkjet Printers: these printers spray jets of ink droplets onto paper through a print head that slides across a page as it moves through the printer. These use traditional containers like Canon ink cartridges to store ink.
- Laser Printers: this type of printer is a more recent design that uses lasers to send an electric charge to a drum within the printer. The drum transfers laser printer toner onto the paper. When the toner is used up, it is replaced using a printer toner cartridge.
Here is a look at four of the most useful ways of finding your printer’s IP.
1. Using Windows Computers
If your printer is connected to a Windows computer, take the following steps to find the IP address:
- In the search box at the bottom of your home screen, where it says “Type here to search,” type “control panel” and hit search. This brings up your control panel app display with multiple options such as “System and Security,” “User Accounts” and “Appearance and Personalization.”
- Click on the “Hardware and Sound” thumbnail. Within this page, find “Devices and Printers” and click to open it.
- From here, you will see a list of printer devices available to your computer. Find your printer, right-click on it and hit “Properties.”
- In the pop-up window, several tabs appear. Look for the “Web Services” tab. Your printer IP address should be available at the end of the “Device Information and Troubleshooting” panel.
If this approach doesn’t work, you can use a more thorough search using the Command Prompt.
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2. Using a Command Prompt
The Command Prompt method is a little more complex than using the control panel; however, by following these steps closely, you should have no issue:
- Type “cmd” into the search box at the bottom of your homepage to bring up the command prompt app.
- In the command line, type “ipconfig” and then hit enter.
- Locate the “IPv4” address and take note of it.
- Create a new command line and type “ping,” hit space, type the IPv4 address and then hit enter.
- Wait for the page to load before typing “arp -a” and hitting enter. Find the dynamic IP address from the page and copy it.
- Paste the dynamic IP into your browser. If there are multiple ones, use a separate tab for each.
- One of these pages should open a printer setup. This page will contain your printer’s IP, as well as other information.
3. Using an Apple MacBook
Locating the printer IP on an Apple computer is very straightforward:
- Hit the Apple symbol at the top of your screen and select “System Preferences.”
- Find the “Printers and Scanners” thumbnail and click through.
- Locate your printer from the column that appears and select it.
- The printer information will pop up. The IP address is the 12-digit figure next to “Location.”
4. Use the Router
Using the router to find your printer IP is another simple method. However, in many scenarios, users may not have access rights to the router, making this method unsuitable. If you have access, take the following steps:
- Open up whatever browser you generally use and type “192.168.1.1” into the search bar before hitting enter.
- Once the page opens, you may enter your router username and password. Submit these details and log in.
- Click into the “Local Network” section and locate the “DHCP Client Table” or client list. A list of devices should appear.
- Find your printer and click through. From here, you can see printer information, including the IP address.
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Keep Your Printer in Top Condition
It’s essential to understand how your printer operates to keep it running well. Accessing the IP can help you troubleshoot any network-related problems. It’s also important to keep your printer topped up with ink or toner.