You find yourself at a remote broadcast site and you need to assign a
static IP address for one of your devices. But no one at the site can
tell you about the router or its IP address.
Engineering consultant Frank Hertel offers steps to decide which IP
address to use. A caution: You don’t want to select an address
that’s going to cause an IP conflict for the client’s operation.
Fig. 1: The START button is the first step to identifying a static IP
One possibility is to gain access to one of the client’s computers
operating on the site’s local area network. Follow these steps.
First, click on the START icon at lower left of the computer screen
(see Fig. 1). Within that figure, locate the “Search Programs and
Files” (indicated with the #2 in the bubble).
Fig. 2: Type in CMD in the Search Programs and Files box.
As shown in Fig. 2, type in CMD in the Search Programs and Files box,
then press ENTER. Fig. 3 shows the Command Line Screen, which appears
after you do so.
Fig. 3: The Command Line Screen
As seen in Fig. 4, Type “arp -a” at the C prompt and press ENTER
(note that the dash is the hyphen, the key next to the zero on your
keyboard, rather than the longer en dash or em dash). The IP address
table for the active/online devices will be displayed. These are
devices in use on the LAN that is serviced by the switch to which you
There are limitations to using “arp -a.” It will only let you see
the IP addresses of the devices that are on the switch you are using;
it cannot see the IP addresses of other devices that are not
connected directly to your specific switch.
Fig. 4: The IP Address Table
This process likely will provide you with the information you’ll
need to aid in choosing an IP address. It will also ensure that you
don’t select a static IP address that is critical to the client’s
You won’t need to do this if your equipment can use DHCP IP
addressing and if the addressing has been provided by the IT
administrator who set up the LAN router.
Thanks, Frank, for a useful tip as remote season approaches.
* * *
The images shown in Figs. 1 through 4 are from a free program called
ScreenPrint32. Frank Hertel has enjoyed using the program, which
allows you to print what’s on your computer screen. It will also
let you capture any part of the screen image using a selection box.
Then you can use what you captured in emails or presentations. Frank
uses it when preparing manuals for clients or operating instruction
manuals for operators.
Google Screen print32 for the download. Several are provided; try the
one at screenprint32.en.softonic.com.
* * *
While we’re on the topic of free software, broadcast engineer Dan
Slentz, a fellow RW contributor, offers more “must haves.”
Most engineers are familiar with the Visio drawing program. You’re
probably also familiar with its price. Dan suggests Draw.IO, a free
tool excellent for when you need to document signal flow or make flow
When he’s not engineering, Dan Slentz does voiceover work. He also
shares a link that offers free ISDN over the Internet using Google
Chrome. Dan says it is ideal for VO work. Find out more at ipDTL.com.
Is there a favorite free or
low-cost software package you couldn’t live without? Send the info
my way: email@example.com.
Contribute to Workbench. You’ll help your fellow engineers and
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Author John Bisset has spent 44 years in the broadcasting industry
and is still learning. He is SBE Certified and is a past recipient of
the SBE’s Educator of the Year Award.