Finding an available IP address is useful if you need to connect such devices as a printer, a computer, a gaming console (like Xbox 360) or DVRs to a network. It is also useful if you need a static IP address. A static IP address never changes and is always associated with one device. IP addresses are used so devices can "talk" to each other. Without an available IP address, this would not be possible.
Click the "Start" menu on your computer. Click "Run." This opens a window that allows you to run a program or open a folder on your computer.
Video of the Day
Type "cmd" (no quote marks) next to where it says Open. Then click "OK." This will open the command prompt. You will now see a window with a black background and some text in it.
Type "ipconfig" (no quote marks) next to where the cursor is flashing if you do not know your IP address. Then press "Enter." Several lines of text will show up on the screen. To find your IP address, look for the line that says "IP Address." Your IP address will show up as "xxx.xxx.x.x" where x equals numbers; for this example, we will use 192.168.1.1.
Scroll down and look for the flashing cursor again. Type "ping 192.168.1.x" (no quote marks) where the first seven numbers are the same as your IP address as previously found, and where x equals the number you choose to see what is available. For this example, we'll use 9.
Type "ping 192.168.1.9" (no quote marks). If it is available for use, it will say "Destination Host Unreachable."