The Way I See It!

I am an Ultra-Conservative, Alpha-Male, True Authentic Leader, Type "C" Personality, who is very active in my community; whether it is donating time, clothes or money for Project Concern or going to Common Council meetings and voicing my opinions. As a blogger, I intend to provide a different viewpoint "The way I see it!" on various world, national and local issues with a few helpful tips & tidbits sprinkled in.

Private VS Public TCP/IP

Computer, Info, Internet, Tips

While reading other blogs and having a few people comment to me about how IP works, I thought I should explain a plain English version and clear up a few mistakes.


First, if you have high-speed Internet and a wireless router, make sure to turn off broadcast, you should enable WPA if you can (use at least 128bit WEP if you cannot use WPA), change your default password, and default SSID name.  Don’t let people know you use a Linksys or a NetGear or any manufacturer as they can look for know weaknesses for that type.  Make them work harder to try and steal your bandwidth or compromise your computer and files.  Limit the DHCP IP’s given out to just the amount of your devices.  Enable MAC Filtering for your know device as well.


Second, many places around Cudahy have free Wi-Fi which allows you free access to the Internet from these hot spots.  One is City Lounge right by the library and another is McDonald’s on Packard.  The Cudahy library itself may have a Wi-Fi connection.  Someone living around there could have it easy finding a stray connection from the free Wi-Fi or a neighbor not knowing.  You can sip a coffee or drink a beer and be on someone else’s network just browsing or mischief.


One can hop on the Library computers and surf.  I do think some sites may be blocked.


With using those and other hot spots, it is very hard to know who a user is.  The MAC address that is unique to all network cards and devices.  But wait, there are programs out there that allow you to change it.  Some router/modem configurations require you to clone the MAC address of the PC’s network card to the router.  So even that can be spoofed or faked.  There are programs to block or mask your IP, even to fake a known one.  Toolkits are out there if you look for them.


I will try not to be too technical on it so I am sorry if I make it too simple for some.  Most of the info will come from Microsoft’s IP certification book on IPv4.  A teacher and a friend of mine helped write the IPv6 book for Microsoft, so I will also draw off of him and notes from class.


What is TCP/IP? TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) is the basic communication language or protocol of the Internet.  It can also be used as a communications protocol in a private network (either an intranet or an extranet).  When you are set up with direct access to the Internet, your computer is provided with a copy of the TCP/IP program just as every other computer that you may send messages to or get information from also has a copy of TCP/IP.


IP is an address number much like the street address or phone number.  Now when you type in your browser a DNS server (Domain Name System or Domain Name Server) checks its database and translates it from the name to an IP address in the case of the example


It is much easier to remember the word instead of the number, but you can place the number in your browser and get  Large companies have a web farm, which has multiple servers working together as one normally with a single heartbeat.  Transaction servers for eCommerce depend heavily on web farms.  You may notice you are on one if doing a search and the site comes up www1.the  The 1 denotes the transaction/database server you are on.


Public IP are addresses that are routable out on the Internet.  Now you could setup your home network with  Now you will have problems routing info and you will get a call that you are using a number that is registered and owned and you must stop.  You would never want your internal network setup with public IP’s unless you do mean to have it exposed to the world.  Public IP’s are static.  One side of your cable or dsl modem has a public side and many that have a router have a private side.


Private IP’s are not routable to the Internet without being encapsulated.  Most people have a Class C setup for which allows for 254 computers that can use the one public IP you get from your ISP.  So that means everyone at your office has the same public IP.  Without looking at internal router tables to look at private IP and MAC addresses you cannot know which computer is the one at a site.  At my office, twelve computers share the one public IP.  What makes this more complicated is my office also has two different ISP’s and a dual turbo router that can load balance or fall over for fault tolerance between the two types, cable and DSL.  You don’t get to choose which one you mainly go out on as it works off of an “OSPF” open shortest path first technology.  Not unlike the dual shotgun modems that came out just before broadband became popular.


IP’s are setup in three standard classes.

Class A Supports 16 million hosts/computers through


Class B Supports 65,000 hosts/computers through


Class C Supports 254 hosts/computers through


These classes are reserved.


Class D to Reserved for multicast groups.


Class E to Reserved.


In explaining it, I dropped the hosts to network info.  You can do subnetting and supernetting to change the number of hosts and networks, but I will not get into that as it can get in depth.  You can also use a Class A IP scheme and a Class C subnet mask.


Last year a man in Cedar Springs, Mich., was fined $400 for mooching off somebody else's wi-fi--a police officer spotted him laptop-surfing in a parked car.  Apparently, that violates Title 18, Part 1, Chapter 47 of the United States Code, which covers anybody who "intentionally accesses a computer without authorization or exceeds authorized access.”  Whatever that means--the law was passed in 1986,


Illegal or not, it was definitely unethical


I wanted their bandwidth!  If it was so precious to them, they should have put a password on it!  Don't look at me like that--according to the Wi-Fi Alliance, 53% of people surveyed said they'd done the same thing.




Quick check of the Cudahy Library Website



Free wireless Internet access is now available anywhere in the Library building. Just choose "Library" from the list of providers 

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