Find your IP Address on a Mac
Knowing your Mac’s IP address is important for setting up a network or sharing files, here’s two different ways to find your IP address in Mac OS X; an easy way through the GUI and a more technical approach with the command line. These methods will be the same whether you are connected via ethernet or wireless.
This works the same in all versions of OS X on all Macs.
How to Find the IP Address on a Mac
You can find any Macs IP, or your IP address from the Mac System Preferences Network configuration screen:
- From the Apple menu pull down “System Preferences”
- Click on the “Network” preference pane
- Your IP address will be visible to the right, as indicated in the screenshot below
Your IP address is the number listed, in the above case it is 192.168.0.100
Now we’ll cover the more technical approaches to getting your IP address using the Mac OS X command line:
Find your IP Address via the Mac OS X Terminal
This is how to find the IP address of your Mac through the Terminal, this is often the quickest way for those that are more technically inclined.
- Launch the Terminal located in /Applications/Utilities/
- Type the following command:
ifconfig |grep inet
- You will see something that looks like this:
inet6 ::1 prefixlen 128
inet6 fe80::1%lo0 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x1
inet 127.0.0.1 netmask 0xff000000
inet6 fe80::fa1e:dfff:feea:d544%en1 prefixlen 64 scopeid 0x5
inet 192.168.0.100 netmask 0xffffff00 broadcast 192.168.0.255
- Your IP address is usually next to the last entry of ‘inet’ and in this case is 192.168.0.100, an IP address is always in the format of x.x.x.x but it will never be 127.0.0.1 because that is your machines loopback address. Because you can always ignore 127.0.0.1, this guarantees that your IP address will be the other IP between ‘inet’ and ‘netmask’
The other command line option is to use:
ipconfig getifaddr en1 which reports back only your en1 (usually wireless) IP address. You can change this to en0 for wired/ethernet too. I have heard ipconfig is not supported in all versions of Mac OS X so I did not recommend this as the first choice. However, using ipconfig you can also set your IP address from the command line.
Find your External IP Address in Mac OS X
Your external IP address is what is broadcast to the world rather than your local network (behind a wireless router, for instance). This is easiest to find through a Terminal command a well:
curl whatismyip.org This will instantly report back your external IP address. We covered this command when finding your external IP address in the past.