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Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol.

DHCP is a communications protocol where a range of IP addresses are managed centrally and assigned automatically to computers on demand. The alternative is to use static IP address where each computer is permanently allocated a fixed IP address.

An advantage of DHCP (over static IP address allocation) is that it removes the burden of configuring each computer to use a unique IP address and removes the need to manually keep records on which IP address has been allocated to which computer. The disadvantage is that the IP address of a computer cannot be known in advance and its IP address may change over time.

For more information see: