General Question

MrHandsome's avatar

What is a DHCP client?

Asked by MrHandsome (5points) September 30th, 2008

My router has custom firmware dd-wrt and it has a list of a few clients listed as “DHCP clients.” What is that?

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6 Answers

blastfamy's avatar

From the wikipedia article

“Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) is a protocol used by networked devices (clients) to obtain the parameters necessary for operation in an Internet Protocol network. This protocol reduces system administration workload, allowing devices to be added to the network with little or no manual configuration.”

The purpose of this is to uniquely identify each computer connected to the router as other computers on the network will see the computer.

trasnlation please…
Essentially, when you connect your computer to a router, the router will assign a router-specific IP address. DHCP allows for the router to do this automagically, without you having to do anything (supposedly…) without naming conflicts.

MrHandsome's avatar

Thanks for the reply, what is exactly is the client though?

blastfamy's avatar

The clients are the machines connected to the router.

Magnus's avatar

It’s the thing that assigns you an ip address.

bodyhead's avatar

The thing that assigns you an ip address is the dhcp server (not client).

The DHCP client is a small discovery program which will go out and find an available dhcp server. If there is a server available then the client will ask the server for network information. The server will then provide the ip address, the network mask, the gateway address, and the dns servers. The client will then use this information the dhcp server provided information to access the network.

There is also lease time on the client ip addresses. Once a certain amount of time passes (1 hour, 10 days, it could be set to anything), the client will need to renew it’s settings. It basically starts the whole discovery process again but if the dhcp server can give the dhcp client the same ip address, it will.

bhaati's avatar

…To identify yourself u need an IP address…or u define it in static ways or u use a DHCP client to have it in a dynamic way…this is the simplest way i can put it!!! :-)

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