What is IP (Internet Protocol address)?
An Internet Protocol address (IP address) is a numerical label assigned to each device (e.g., computer, printer) participating in a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication. An IP address serves two principal functions: host or network interface identification and location addressing. Its role has been characterized as follows: “A name indicates what we seek. An address indicates where it is. A route indicates how to get there.”
The designers of the Internet Protocol defined an IP address as a 32-bit number and this system, known as Internet Protocol Version 4 (IPv4), is still in use today. However, because of the growth of the Internet and the predicted depletion of available addresses, a new version of IP (IPv6), using 128 bits for the address, was developed in 1995.
IPv6 was standardized as RFC 2460 in 1998, and its deployment has been ongoing since the mid-2000s.
IP addresses are usually written and displayed in human-readable notations, such as 172.16.254.1 (IPv4), and 2001:db8:0:1234:0:567:8:1 (IPv6).
The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) manages the IP address space allocations globally and delegates five regional Internet registries (RIRs) to allocate IP address blocks to local Internet registries (Internet service providers) and other entities. (Source: Wikipedia)
Every domain name that is a home to a website has an IP address assigned to it. An IP address is the real address of a website.
Domain names were developed because it is difficult to remember long IP numbers like 126.96.36.199
A shared IP is an IP address that is used for multiple sites. A shared IP can host all sites on a webserver. Because the IP address of a website is used for various sites on the server the actions of one site owner can affect everyone on the server.
For example, if an IP address is blacklisted for spamming this will blacklist mail for all sites using the shared IP address. We work hard to prevent and to resolve these issues immediately and take corrective action against anyone who abuses the system. You will not be able to install an SSL certificate if your site is on a shared IP.
Many site owners are able to host their site on a shared IP without ever being affected by another owner on the server. If mail is critical to you we recommend using a mail hosting provider that can provide a robust mail server such as Google Apps. This will also help you because if the shared IP address becomes blacklistes your email will not be affected because your mail will be hosted elsewhere. Google Apps is able to offer more mail storage and better spam and junk filtering than the service that is available with your web hosting account with us. For instructions on configuring Google Apps please read How to Configure Google Applications.
A dedicated IP is an IP address that is assigned to one site. Large websites or e-commerce sites have dedicated IP addresses that host only one domain. If a site handles payment processing directly and not through a third party such as PayPal, the site must use SSL and therefore will need to be on a dedicated IP address.