How To Set a A Static IP Address In Windows – Server Basics

A lot of my articles, and IT work in general requires setting a static IP address up for your Windows Server or PC. So here’s how to do it.

Note that this procedure will work equally well for Windows 10, and Server 2016. The procedure is fairly similar for Server 2008 and 2012 though it’s easier to go through the “Network and Sharing Center” to get to the Adapter Settings. The idea is pretty similar for Windows 7/Vista. If you’re using Windows XP, it’s still pretty similar but getting to the Network Properties Window is different.  This guide is specifically for Server 2016.

How To Set a Static IP Address in Windows Server 2016

Step 1 – Click the Start button and then click the gear button on the left hand side of the start panel. This should bring up the Settings Window.

Step 2 – Select “Network and Internet”

Step 3 – Select “Ethernet” from the left hand side. If you’re connected with WiFi, you can click that, it’s all going to the same place eventually anyway. 

Step 4 – Under related settings click on “Change Adapter Settings”. You can also get here in fewer steps by opening the Control Panel, changing the view to “Large Icons”, opening the “Network and Sharing Center” and clicking on the “Change Adapter Settings” on the left.

 

Step 5 – Find your active Ethernet Adapter and right click on it and hit properties. Many actual servers have two when they come out of the box, so if you’ve got it hooked in to your router it’ll be the one that isn’t grayed out. My server is just a fancy PC so it just has one. Normal PC’s usually just have one, so it’s pretty easy to figure out. If you’re trying to do this for your WiFi adapter, right click on it and hit properties, the process is the same.

Step 6 – Most networks are still IP4 so click on TCP/IPv4 settings and hit the “Properties” button.

Step 7 – Enter your static IP address information. If you aren’t sure exactly what to put here, refer to the quick and dirty network guide at the end of this article. I’ll post a better one later for setting up a basic flat network.

Step 8 – Click OK on everything and you’re done!

Quick and Dirty Network Analysis Guide

So you know you server needs a static IP but you don’t really know how to figure out exactly what IP to use? Or even what to put in the DNS information? Well here’s a few tips. Keep in mind this is a method I’ve used for small networks where I had no information going in and it works pretty well but is by no means 100% fool proof. There are things in more complicated networks that can cause this not to work, but for most small to medium sized business and home networks this is a good way to go about it.

Step 1 – Determine Network IP Layout

Find a PC already on the network, open a command prompt and type “ipconfig /all” and hit enter. This should bring up all kinds of network information. You’ll see an IP address, subnet mask, gateway and DNS servers, DHCP server, and other stuff. Write it all down. It’ll probably look something like this on a small network.

IP – 192.168.1.102
Subnet Mask – 255.255.255.0
Gateway – 192.168.1.1

DNS Server: 192.168.1.1
Alternate DNS Server: 8.8.8.8 (may not even have one)

DHCP Server: 192.168.1.1

This is probably a basic network. Again, write it all down, it’s important. Other IP schemes could be something like 10.1.1.1 or 172.16.0.100 or something like that. This method really only starts getting weird on big networks with subnet masks like 255.255.0.0 or really small ones with masks like 255.255.255.240. If you see that, you will probably need to do some additional research.

Step 2 – Find a Free IP address that Hopefully Is Not In DHCP Range

If the IP address is something like 192.168.1.100 or 192.168.1.103, there aren’t many computers on the network, and the DHCP server is the same as the gateway, you’re in luck. It’s a super basic network. If the DHCP server is different, it still doesn’t matter much it’s just something to keep in mind. Likely the range is 192.168.1.100-192.168.1.200. So just cross those IP’s off your list of possibilities.

Personally, for servers I like to start low. So open a command prompt and type “ping 192.168.1.2” and see if you get a response. If you do, type the same thing except change that last 2 to a 3 and keep doing that until you don’t get a response. When you don’t get a response, that’s you’re IP address. Likely as not you won’t get one on your first try if it’s a really small network and they don’t have a server, but there might be some network printers or something in the way and you don’t want to have conflicting IP addresses.

Now if it’s a regular PC or something I like to start higher, so I personally would start at around 240 and start pinging.

Step 3 – Enter the IP Information Into your Server or PC.

Take your newly found IP address and the information you wrote down and enter it into the server using the steps above. Make sure it matches. Practically every time this will work. If you get a “Duplicate IP Address” warning just go back to pinging on a working PC until you find another free one. Sometimes firewalls or something have pinging turned off. There is also free network scanning software you can download that will make this process a lot faster.

Note: If anyone has a better, faster, or quicker way to find a free IP address that you can do from a normal workstation on a network or something I’d be glad to post it. Like I said, this is the method I’ve been using for small networks for a long time where I’ve had no information going in and just needed to install a printer or appliance or something.

ClearOS – Initial Configuration – Video

Recorded my initial configuration of ClearOS. Here’s the video with my commentary.

I do make a few mistakes in the video. One is the OS is really Centos, and while I did add SugarCRM, it wasn’t what I needed. I’ll be linking instructions for that soon though.

CMOS Batteries – Most Common Type

Quick post for something to add to your toolkits. Occasionally a CMOS battery will go out, especially on an old machine that’s been sitting around a while. They last several years but not forever. I’ve seen some ancient machines that use some weird battery packs but most motherboards use plain old ‘CR2032’ lithium batteries. You can be a sucker and go buy them locally for way more than what they’re worth or get a few dozen of them now for about fifty cents each if you need one.

KEYKO 10pc C2032 Lithium Coin Cell Battery

The above link has ten packs, twenty packs, and fifty packs. If you look around you can find them in hundred piece blister packs. Personally I wouldn’t buy that many unless you work with a lot of old computers. They do go bad, not quickly but they do.

They’re also handy to have around for other things. Small kitchen scales, alarm clocks and other devices use them either as their power source or as a memory backup. You can also replace old gameboy game cartridge batteries with them.

Just had to use one for a computer I ‘refurbished’ for a ClearOS server build I just did. Don’t get caught unprepared!

Self Signed Certificates in Exchange 2010

My certificates expired recently on my Exchange server and I had to set about renewing them. Not fun, more on that later. I was going to make a long how to on this but Microsoft has a wiki post on TechNet about this very subject with pictures and explanations.

How to use a self signed certificate in Exchange 2010

This is for your internal server certificates, it doesn’t do much with the outside world. You’ll still need a certificate for your internet facing services. This will clear up the certificate errors you’ll get internally with Outlook 2007-2010 though.

 

How to Apply Cyberoam 10 Firmware Updates

A few times a year a notification on your Cyberoam’s dashboard that looks like this:

Cyberoam Update Notification

The update can be downloaded directly from the link and the update process is fairly painless. I’ve done this for two dozen or more units and never had one brick, so there’s very little worry here. Also the Cyberoam keeps two firmware images in memory so that if something goes wrong, it just boots from the last valid image (i.e. the one it’s running now). Still, I’d do this after hours and take a configuration backup first.

I recommend that you check my article on Automatic Cyberoam Backups and add them before going further.

Applying Cyberoam Firmware Updates

Step 1 – Take a manual backup of your Cyberoam. It’s fairly easy to do. Go to the Maintenance Menu under the System Menu on the left. Select the Backup and Restore tab and click the “Download Now” button. A file download of the configuration file will start. It’s a small file so even if you’re doing this over the internet, it shouldn’t take too long to finish.

Cyberoam E-mail Backup Configuration

Step 2 – Download the Firmware update. You can either get it from the message on your dashboard or from Cyberoam’s website directly. You’ll need to log into your customer account to get the download. I don’t suggest doing this because you have to answer a few questions about your device and if you make the wrong choice, this at best won’t work.

Step 3 – Go to the Mantenance Menu under the System Menu and select the Firmware Tab. You’ll see the two, or possibly more firmware images being stored on your device. The top one on the list will have an upwards pointing arrow next to it. See the image below. Note that the bottom one on the list is the one being used by the unit.

Cyberoam Firmware Update Screen Upload Icon Marked

Click on that upload icon.

Step 4 – Find the firmware file you downloaded in the second step with the “Choose File” button.

Cyberoam Upload Screen

Step 5 – You have two options at this point. You can click the “Upload and Boot” button and it will apply it immediately, or you can just click the upload firmware button. If you choose the latter, you can wait until a later time to apply the firmware. Note that when you just upload the firmware, it replaces the non-active image on your device.

Step 6 – If you clicked the “Upload and Boot” button, then as soon as the unit reboots, you are done. If you clicked the “Upload Firmware Button” you will have to tell it when to boot to the new image. To do so, click the two arrows icon on the top item on the list (the non-active image). See the image below:

Cyberoam Firmware Update Screen Boot Image Icon Marked

Once the Cyberoam has rebooted in either case you’ve updated the firmware. Most of the time if the image was bad, or something else goes wrong it just boots into the last working image. Most of the time if you just download the file again and try again this will resolve itself. If not you may either need to call customer support or wait for the next firmware image to come out.