Technology

Guide: How to Fix IP Address Conflict in Win 7, 8 & 10

How-to-Fix-IP-Address-Conflict
Written by Ekyaku Ruth

Am wondering whether you have ever got an IP address error message when turning on your computer or taking it out of sleep mode or when you are busy using it. It happens to my computer most times.  You are busy doing some work, then suddenly windows presents you with a warning dialog box that there is an IP address conflict with another system on the network.  This happens when two computers on the same LAN network end up with the same IP address. In this guide on how to fix IP address conflict which usually occurs when both computers end up not being able to connect to network resources or perform other network operations, i will share on how to have it configured.  An IP address conflict has probably happened to almost every internet user.

Literally, when you are connected to any network using your windows pc, all the computers using that network get a unique number assigned to them in order to keep them apart. This unique number is what we call their internal I.P. or Internet Protocol. However, if you are using a router in your home that enables more than one pc to connect to the internet, it’s most likely that each computer is assigned an internal IP. Therefore, in order for the communication between computers on your network to work, all the computers need to have their own unique IP. Having their own unique IP prevents cases of IP address conflict.

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What Is An IP Address Conflict?

An IP address conflict is a situation that occurs when two communication endpoints on a network have been assigned the same IP address. Communication endpoints include computers, mobile devices, or any individual network adapter and many others. IP conflicts between two endpoints usually result into a case where one or both of them become unusable for network operations.  Therefore, it is appropriate to say that an IP Address conflict happens when two or additional devices or computers carry a similar IP address on the same network at the same time.

When Does An IP Address Occur?

An IP address conflict can occur due to various reasons, but the most common example is when two or more systems are assigned the same static IP address. However, this doesn’t happen as much now due to DHCP servers (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol). DHCP is a server protocol that automatically provides an Internet Protocol host with its IP address. However, if you have more than one DHCP server running similarly configured servers may hand out identical address to multiple devices.

Six Ways Computers Acquire Conflicting IP Addresses

  • When a system administrator assigns two computers on a local area network (LAN) the same static IP address, it results into an IP address conflict between those two computers.
  • When a system administrator assigns a computer a static IP address within the local network’s DHCP range (dynamic IP range), and the same address is automatically assigned by the local DHCP server, automatically leads to an IP address conflict.
  • When there is a malfunction in the network’s DHCP server, it allows the same dynamic address to automatically be assigned to multiple computers and when like a mobile device is put into a sleeping mode and then awakened later, an IP address conflict occurs.
  • When your Internet Service Provider accidentally assigns you and another customer the same IP address, an IP address conflict is bound to happen.
  • It is also possible within a network, one computer may experience an IP address conflict with itself if that particular computer is configured with multiple adapters.
  • In other cases network administrators may also create IP conflicts by connecting two ports (which can happen accidentally) of a network switch or network router to each other.

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Finding  IP Address Conflict

It should be noted that the particular IP address conflict error message or other indication of IP conflicts varies depending on the type of device affected and the network operating system it runs. Therefore,

  • You have to first identify the affected systems. To be specific, since it is difficult to identify affected systems using PING and ARP, it is better to use solar winds IP Control Bundle that actively identifies IP conflicts.
  • Also, on most Microsoft Windows computers, if you attempt to set a static IP address that is already active on the local network, you will receive the following pop-up error message: “The static IP address that was just configured is already in use on the network. Please reconfigure a different IP address”. And on newer Microsoft Windows computers having dynamic IP conflicts, you should receive a balloon error message in the Taskbar as soon as the operating system detects the issue: “There is an IP address conflict with another system on the network.” However, sometimes, especially on older windows computers, a message similar to the following may instead appear in a pop-up window: “The system has detected a conflict for IP address…” just as it appears, you will know that an IP address conflict has occurred.

With these you can know that you have encountered an IP address conflict and then you can follow the following guide to fix the error.

Here is How To fix IP Address Conflict

There are three methods  on how to fix ip address conflict which you can use windows 7, 8 and 10. Resolving an IP address conflict depends on the setup of the network and the following guide will lead you through the methods on how to fix your IP address conflict bringing out specific guidelines for each network set up.

How-to-Fix-IP-Address-Conflict-in-Win-7,-8-&-10

How-to-Fix-IP-Address-Conflict-in-Win-7,-8-&-10

Method 1: Reconfigure Static IP Address

When you sign up with an internet service provider, you will either end up with a static IP address or a dynamic IP address depending on the nature of your account. Therefore with a static IP address, you can use this method by re-configuring the static IP address.

If the IP address conflict comes from a network with assigned static IP addresses, you may need to review the addresses that were used in the network and verify if there are instances of using similar addresses on different devices.  If there are cases of IP address conflicts in the network, then you need to re-assign unique static IP addresses to the devices in the network. The current IP address could also be conflicting with the set of IP addresses that the DHCP server is giving out. Well, let us go through these steps.

How-to-Fix-IP-Address-Conflict-in-Win-7,-8-&-10-(1)

How-to-Fix-IP-Address-Conflict-in-Win-7,-8-&-10-(1)

Step 1 – Click on the start menu and type control panel in the search bar.

When you click the start menu, you’ll see the control panel and click on it too. This will bring you options.

Step 2 – In the Control Panel, click on the Network and Internet option.

From the options, you will click on the network and internet option.

Step 3 – Now the window of Network and Internet will appear.

You will click on an option of Network and sharing center.

Step 4 – Now, on the left side of the windows, click on the change adapter setting option.

The change adapter setting option will appear. You will click on it like it is showing below.

Step 5 – Now you will be able to see all the adapters in your network.

When you click on the change adapter settings you will be able to clearly notice the adapters in your network and thus you will identify the on that you are using.

Step 6 – Right click on the adapter that you currently used for internet connection and select its properties.

When you right click on the adapter, you will select properties. Like it is showing below.

Step 7 – Now a dialog will appear, in the networking tab click on the internet protocol version 4 and click on its properties.  

Step 8 – In the properties, you can easily take the IP address from DHCP server or fill the static IP address.

Step 9 – Now, after changing the IP address restart your computer or laptop and hence your problem will be resolved

When done carefully, you can fix your IP address conflict on your computer in not more than 10 minutes. However, just like I had mentioned earlier, there are other methods. Now let us go through method two.

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Method 2: Renew IP Address

How-to-Fix-IP-Address-Conflict-in-Win-7,-8-&-10-(2)

How-to-Fix-IP-Address-Conflict-in-Win-7,-8-&-10-(2)

If there is a DHCP server problem, you can renew your IP address and it is the best option and an ideal solution by releasing and renewing the IP address through the Command Prompt.

With a quick guide, open up the command prompt and type “ipconfig /release” in the window, then press enter. The DHCP server will then assign a new IP address to your computer. Well lets go through the steps.

Step 1- Click on the start menu and type command prompt.

Step 2- Now go ahead and enter below command

ipconfig /release

Step 3- After this, the IP address of your computer will be renewed with a new IP from DHCP server and this will hence resolve your IP address conflicts.By these steps you will be fixing your IP address conflict and it ought to be fixed by step 2.

Method 3: Restart Your Router

There may be a problem where your router can be failing to assign a correct IP address to the connected device. Usually, this is due to a momentary bug which is always cleared by a power cycle or reboot. Therefore, to fix the IP address conflict, start by switching off the router, wait 1-2 minutes and turn it back on. After turning it on, give it another 2-3 minute to settle and after this connect your device back. This will solve the problem, since IP conflicts sometimes just work themselves out. Resolving the issue could be as simple as just restarting the router. Therefore, if every device in the network was assigned dynamic IP addresses, the issue should be fixed as the router reboots and re-assigns IP addresses to every device in the network.

Conclusion

As we connect more and more devices to our networks and the Internet, such a connection error like the IP address conflict is bound to happen. While it should not be a daily error for the networks, it is also a good strategy to understand the issue and know what steps to take to resolve it. Resolving such a conflict would not need more than a few minutes because it is a matter of identifying the cause of the IP conflict and then following the steps and then executing them.

I hope this guide on how to fix IP address conflict in windows has been of help to you. Share you experience in the comment box below.

About the author

Ekyaku Ruth

Ruth has a passion for writing and spends most of her time putting ideas on paper. She does Humanitarian work alongside writing.

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