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.

Home Routers and Why You Need One

I like to think of modern home routers as your first line of defense against the bad things out there on the internet. They are super important, and everyone with internet access should have one. Most new routers have a lot of features that surpass “route traffic to the internet and back”. Your basic Linksys router will have the following features, and a lot more right out of the box.

  • Basic Routing – Get your traffic to the internet, and the internet’s traffic to the right computer. Some of them can even do internal routing.
  • Network Address Translation – Lets you have more than one computer share an internet connection without your ISP really knowing it.
  • Wireless Networking – Connect your laptops and other wireless devices to the home network.
  • Basic Firewall – Protect your stuff from basic attacks originating from the internet.
  • VPN Passthrough – Lets you connect to your work without any re-configuring your firewall.
  • Quality of Service, Port Forwarding, MAC address restrictions, Diagnostic Tools, Data Usage Tools, DNS, DHCP and tons more.

Your basic $50-$80 wireless router will have at least all these features, and probably a lot more. Most people just use them to put Wi-Fi in their house if their internet provider didn’t just ship them one.

One major reason to get a router is that it will actually save you money in the long run. It’s not terribly surprising if your cable modem or DSL modem goes out a year after you buy it, and you’ll have to get a new one. If you have a combination router/modem then it’s going to be a lot more expensive. A good router that wasn’t the low-end $20 one at Wal-Mart will typically last five years without much more maintenance than occasionally unplugging it and plugging it back in. So instead of having to buy that $200 router/modem combo just because the modem part when out, you can just go get a $30-$80 modem once every year or so and be fine.

The other reason is the firewall. Most routers have basic firewalls that just work, no configuring by you is needed. If you’re hooking your PC directly to the modem, you will be depending on Windows Firewall, or whatever Apple uses. This isn’t a good idea. Windows Firewall isn’t that great, and a lot of malware just flat turns it off. Router firewalls can be a lot tougher to get around.

What Routers Are Compatible With My ISP?

Unlike modems, there’s not a lot to router compatibility. If you go to your local Best Buy, you’ll see about two dozen models of wireless router. They’ll range from $30 to $250 and have all sorts of guarantees on the front about gaming and video streaming.

The reality is, most of those claims are utter bull. At very least they are misleading. They’ll compare their routers to a competitors low-end router, show how much better it is then make a bunch of claims about speeding up video streaming from the internet. The competitor’s router will have the same thing on their box. Some will even say “Compatible with Suddenlink!”. Yeah, they’re all compatible.

All routers work with TCP/IP and the only major differences are speed, chipset and features you probably don’t care about. Wireless network speed is the biggest thing to look for. You want to get a Wireless N router. It has a range of roughly a thousand feet as opposed to the 300 feet a G router provides, and you get get data speeds up to 300Mbps as opposed to 54Mbps (depending on the security you choose).  Even the speed is misleading because you’ll be lucky to get 64-75Mbps on your wireless if you secure it right. A lot of that depends on your network card and what your house is made of.

Now I know you probably just want me to suggest a model. I prefer Linksys E2500’s. They’re right at the $80 mark and have just about everything even an advanced user could want. Here’s a link if your ad-blocking software are hiding the ads: Cisco E2500 Router

If you are an Apple user, I suggest either the AirPort Extreme 5th Generation or the Base Station with the print server port on it. The only drawback to these for a PC network (other than price) is they don’t have as many wired ports. Otherwise there aren’t any real differences between the Apple product and the Cisco product except the base station has a print server and some iTunes features you can take advantage of on your Mac, iDevices, or PC.

How To Use ShoreTel Communicator On A Workstation Not On The Domain

Just a quick one today. My Google feeds showed a few people searching for ShoreTel not working on a computer not attached to your domain. This is incredibly simple and easy to set up. You do need to know a few things if you’ve integrated your ShoreTel server with your domain, though.

By ‘default’ ShoreTel will expect that your Windows username is the one it needs to send to the server to log on. When it can’t find it, it will ask you for a username and password. This username and password is your ShoreTel username and password, not a windows one. I don’t even think you can put a windows domain\username into it and it will work, even for an Active Directory user.

 

Setting up ShoreTel Communicator On A Workstation Not On Your Domain

You’ve got two choices here on how to do this. The first is set up a new user and extension and the other is modifying an existing username. I personally prefer setting up a new one so you don’t mess any of your normal users up.

Setting up a New User

Step 1 – Make a new user in the Director. Do not put their username in the active directory box, just put them in manually.

Step 2 – Install Communicator on the PC in question. You can use the URL http://shoretel/shorewaredirector/clientinstall if you’ve followed my other guides to getting it integrated with Active Directory. If not then just replace ‘shoretel’ with your server’s host name or IP address.

If it doesn’t install, the executable you need to install it can be found at C:\Program Files\Shoreline Communications\ShoreWare Director\ClientInstall\setup.exe on your server.

If your problem is you can’t get to your ShoreTel Director from the PC you’re trying to do this on. You have a networking problem, not a problem with ShoreTel functionality.

Step 3 – After restarting your computer once ShoreTel Communicator is installed launch the Communicator from the icon on your desktop.

Step 4 – Enter the servername or IP address in the setup screen.

Step 5 – Typically it will “fail to connect” and ask for a username, password and server name. The username can be found on the user’s page in the Director, it’s most of the way down to the bottom. Here’s a screenshot:

The username is generated by the ShoreTel system. It does this automatically, and tries to anticipate it based on the first several users that were added to the system. The password by default is ‘changeme’. I usually change this for my users in Director when they have to be set up like this as when you do, you don’t have to go through the entire voicemail setup wizard, although it isn’t a bad idea to go ahead and have them do it anyway.

Step 6 – Click next several more times and they should be ready to go.

Modifying an Existing User

I personally don’t like this method as one has to consider why they need to do this in the first place. The usual answer is for the soft phone on a user’s personal computer. There are others but that’s the most common I’ve run into.

Step 1 – Open the user in Director.

Step 2 – Uncheck the “Active Directory User” check box at the top.

Step 3 – Scroll down to their Client Username and Password. Make sure these are set like you want them. You will definitely need to retype the client password in. The reason is if they were not always an Active Directory User, their password has likely changed and they don’t remember it. If they were always an Active Directory user, this probably won’t be set to the default ‘changeme’ either.

Step 4 – Set up Communicator as normal, using their ShoreTel Client username and password.

This should get it going. Again if Communicator refuses to connect the most likely reason is a network issue and will need to be troubleshooted from that perspective. A good indication of this is if you can’t get to ShoreWare Director in the web browser of the computer you are setting up.

 

Export a Wave File From ShoreTel’s Auto-Attendant Menu

If you’ve inherited a ShoreTel system from a previous Administrator you may run into the unfortunate situation where they recorded the menus directly into ShoreTel. While not a bad way to record menus, it doesn’t lend well to having a backup or master file to edit for your Auto-Attendants, or Workgroup Voice Mail prompts.

Note to ShoreTel Partners: When you set up a ShoreTel system for a company, for the love of all that is Holy please don’t record the auto attendant menus directly into the Director. This is lazy and if you do it this way you’ve probably also neglected to fix a backup strategy for their server too. Use the voice mail method, or better yet record GOOD menus into Audacity and convert them, that way you and their Administrator have a backup of this stuff. This can be the most tedious, time-consuming thing to recreate if God forbid their server dies. You can get a good headset for less than $50, or if you were so inclined a professional quality microphone you can hook up to your laptop, a pop filter , and a stand to go with it all for under $120. Put your voice talent in a quiet office or conference room and go to town.

There is a way to get those Wave Files from the ShoreTel system so you can make use of them assuming your system still works.

Export Wave File From ShoreTel Auto Attendant Menu

Step 1 – Go into your ShoreWare Director and click on Auto-Attendant Menus, then click on an Auto Attendant. Make sure you install the voice control.

Step 2 – Click the Play button under the Prompt Text. You’ll get something like this:

Step 3 – You’ll notice it has a path above the progress bar.This is on your local machine. It downloads the wave file to a temporary location. This is the folder you are looking for: “C:\Users\yourusername\AppData\Local\Temp“. In the picture above the “aevans-20” is the first part of the file name you want. Please note that if you have a long username portions of the path in the box will not be visible.

Step 4 – You’ll see a bunch of .WAV files starting with either your username or the username of whoever originally recorded the file in this folder. It may or may not be the Windows username, it could be the ShoreTel username. The file names are in this format in case other applications have dumped their sound files there: username-########-######.wav. The one you want will be the one with the date modified stamp of when you listened to it. Please also note that just going to an auto attendant menu page in the director will download the wav file to your PC, so you may have to listen to a few to figure out which one you need.

Step 5 – Copy the file somewhere else and now you have a backup or a wav file in the correct format in case you need to edit it. Also remember to name this something useful.

ShoreTel Communicator On 64 Bit Windows

This is one of those questions I get asked a lot. “Does Shoretel Communicator Work With Windows 7 64 Bit?”. The answer is pretty easy. Yes it does. I’ve got it running on several machines here with just a couple of issues.

I checked my settings to make sure I hadn’t added any compatibility settings or anything. So here’s a rundown of what I’ve got. Your mileage may vary.

I’m running 12.2

 

Compatibility

ShoreTel Communicator is not running as Administrator. I do have Privilege Authority running on my network with Shoretel.exe being given permission to run in the Administrators group, so that might be a reason.

There are no compatibility settings checked, it just runs and works as far as I can tell.

Issues

I’ve run into two issues with Communicator on the 64 bit version of Windows 7.

The first issue is really with Office 2010. I could not get Outlook voice mail integration or contact importing to work. My users don’t really use the Outlook integration so the ones that do I just have it e-mail a wave file. They’re mostly checking it on cell phones, so existing users already had this set up.

The second issue had more to do with installing it. For some reason my workstations didn’t get the package from Group Policy. My Windows 7 32 bit PC’s had no problem with this whatsoever. I really can’t tell if this was a problem with the package, my GPO, Windows or ShoreTel’s installer package. We just installed it on our image and it ran fine. I haven’t run any updates to see if there’s a problem there.

So that’s the easy answer. You can install ShoreTel Communicator on Windows 7 64bit and it will work just fine. The Outlook integration thing might not be a big deal for most people and it’s easy to work around.

If you found this information useful or have any questions feel free to drop me a line here, or on Twitter.