How To Fix An IP Address Conflict Error Message

You're trying to enjoy some streaming when you get the 'Windows has detected an IP address conflict' error. Uh, what?

You probably have a ton of questions, but don't worry. You don't need to have a degree in IT in order to fix this. It's actually a pretty common error message and one that is easy to fix.

What Does It Mean Ff Windows Has Detected An IP Address Conflict?

To understand what IP conflicts, it is useful to understand what an IP is and what it does. Think about when you mail a letter: On the envelope, you write an address on where the letter should go, and you also write a return address. The return address is used to say where the letter is from and where to send correspondence back.

An IP address is very similar, it is a string of numbers used by any device that connects to the internet to let data know where to go.

What Is An IP Address Conflict?

In keeping with the analogy above, how hard would it be to deliver the mail if two houses had the exact same address? That same problem occurs if two devices are using the same IP addresses on a network. That is what is going on when you receive an address conflict error.

In short, IP address conflicts come from the network mistakenly assigning two devices to the same IP address. The result is that neither device can connect.

Is An IP Address Conflict Dangerous?

In short: No. IP address conflicts can be an issue when talking about DNS servers and how that might impact a business, but for the everyday person who just wants to watch some Netflix... you'll be okay.

How To Fix An IP Address Conflict

Option 1: Restart Your Computer

Troubleshooting an IP address error starts like resolving most computer issues. Try restarting your computer. Seriously, by restarting your computer you give it a chance to connect to the network and get assigned a new IP address.

Option 2: Restart Your Router

If restarting doesn't solve the issue, try restarting your router. The router is the device responsible for assigning devices on your network unique IP addresses.

Option 3: Release And Renew Your IP Address

If all else fails, this is a pretty surefire way to resolve the issue.

  1. Search for your Command Prompt Tool
  2. Right-click and choose the "Run As Administrator"
  3. In the Command Prompt, type in the following, hitting enter between each command:
    • netsh int IP reset c:\resetlog.txt
    • ipconfig /release
    • ipconfig /renew

Option 4: Remove Static IP

Static IPs mean that the device has the same IP assigned to it every time. This can be useful in some circumstances, but it can result in the conflict IP address issue. You can change this setting to assign automatic and dynamic IP addresses.

  1. Press the Windows Key and R at the same time to launch the run tool.
  2. Type in ncpa.cpl and hit enter.
  3. This will pull up a list of adapters. Right-click on it and select Properties.
  4. Double click on Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4).
  5. Select Obtain an IP address automatically and Obtain DNS server address automatically.

When you hit okay, it will restart your computer. Once your computer restarts, it should have a new IP address.

Option 5: Update your Network Card Driver

An outdated driver can cause a lot of problems. To check and install updates, follow the below steps:

  1. Press the Windows Key and R at the same time to launch the run tool.
  2. Type in devmgmt.msc and hit enter.
  3. Click the arrow icon to expand your list of Network Adapters
  4. Right-click your driver and select Update.
  5. Windows will attempt to find an update and install it.

Once done, restart your computer and see if the issue persists.