DHCP Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol

The program used on client-server networks, as opposed to peer-to-peer networks. When a network uses DHCP, the network includes a DHCP server that automatically assigns IP addresses to computers on the network as needed. Each time that a computer disconnects from the network and then reconnects, the DHCP server assigns a new IP address. Most client-server networks have either a DHCP server or a Bootp server. Bootp is a program that performs the same function as DHCP. When a computer is not on a network, or the network does not have a DHCP server or similar server, then the computer uses a static IP address. The computer static IP address does not change until is it changed manually. A static IP address is retained during a system restart.

A TCP/IP protocol that provides dynamic configuration of host IP addresses and enables individual computers on an IP network to extract configuration parameters from a DHCP server. DHCP lets a system administrator supervise and distribute IP addresses from a central point in the network.

A TCP/IP facility for dynamic assignment of an IP address to network hosts.