Introduction to DHCP
DHCP stands for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. It is basically a network management protocol which is used to allocate the dynamic Ip addresses to the DHCP enabled clients on the network so that the communication between them can be done easily. It provides the IP address along with the necessary configuration details like the subnet mask, DNS Address, etc. The entire process of IP addresses is managed dynamically and centrally with the help of DHCP. DHCP has so many advantages in real networking services and has become a must have a part for System Administrators and Network Administrators to deal with the clients over the network.
Various Advantages of DHCP
Given below are the various advantages of the DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol):
- One of the biggest advantages of using the DHCP is that it allows the automatic management of IP addresses. In any network without DHCP, the user needs to set the IP address to each client manually. This IP address needs to be reconfigured when the client moves to a different network. But with the DHCP enabled in the system, nothing needs to be done manually by the user. It basically maintains a pool of IP addresses and allocates an address to a DHCP enabled client. It allows the automatic reallocation of IP addresses to the clients when the client is moved to a different network. It also prevents the problem of duplicate addresses. Consider a scenario of an IT company in which a project needs to be done on the same network for 50 employees; allocating IP addresses to each employee is difficult to maintain. In this case, with the help of the DHCP enabled system, IP addresses can be allocated dynamically to each client without any overhead.
- Another big advantage of the DHCP is that it allows the centralized configuration of the client network. Users can make the configuration of multiple clients in one place. These configurations are stored in one place, known as a data store. So in order to change the configuration, users need not to login at a particular client and modify it. Changes need to be made at the data store in order to make it at all places.
- DHCP allows Network Booting, which means that the client can use it in order to access the information from the server on a network instead of using the other methods like Reserve Address Resolution Protocol (RARP). It gives the client all the necessary information required to boot, like the IP address, boot server and the required network configurations. Users need to deploy a few boot servers in the network while using the DHCP network booting as the DHCP requests can be relayed across subnets.
- DHCP provides support for BOOTP clients as both the DHCP and BOOTP can respond to the broadcast messages, and DHCP has the ability to respond to the request of BOOTP clients.
- DHCP provides wide support for a large number of networks. In order to handle multiple requests at a time, the DHCP server uses the multithreading process. In order to handle a large amount of data, DHCP supports the data stores to optimize a large amount of data. The data store basically allows the user to add the support for any database required according to the needs.
- DHCP allows the user to support the local as well as remote clients. It allows the passing of messages and the necessary information from one network to another. As the DHCP requests are indistinguishable from the BOOTP request, they are processed in the same way. If the BOOTP relay is not available, a DHCP server can also be configured in the same way as the BOOTP relay agent.
- DHCP allows the association of pools of two or more IP addresses on a separate subnet.
- DHCP allows the pools of IP addresses in which the IP address to the clients are allocated dynamically. Configuration of the IP addresses are so simple and standardized according to the requirements of the user.
- DHCP allows the easy reconfiguration of the automated TCP/ IP addresses as the standard parameters are automatically sent to each PC/ client.
- DHCP allows sending messages from one network to the other with the help of a DHCP relay agent without the need of a DHCP server on each subnet.
- With the facility of automatic configuration of IP addresses using DHCP, conflicts arose before in the manual configurations like typographical errors, address conflicts on assigning an address to more than one system at a time are minimised.
- DHCP allows the administrator to set the lease time to the client, which is allocated the IP addresses.
- DHCP is quite easy to use for the DHCP enabled clients as the PCs and Mac to need not to be rebooted for the allocation of DHCP IP addresses.
- DHCP has the ability to support any Operating System that supports DHCP (the only requirement being the DHCP support) with the client-focused on either PC or Mac.
- DHCP server provides the failover services between the servers for the scenarios when the one server fails in case the other server covers it and does not let the system down
- DHCP allows the facility of load balancing in between the servers so that the load can be balanced and multiple servers can provide the service to the user at a time.
- With the help of a DHCP relay agent, a single server can manage the multiple physical networks (which are not directly connected with each other).
- The requirement of a new IP address every time for every new client is minimized as the IP addresses can be reused again.
Conclusion – DHCP Advantages
DHCP is an important network service that is necessary for any system to allocate the dynamic IP addresses to the DHCP enabled clients on the network. In clients with windows based Operating Systems, DHCP service is enabled by default as a part of TCP/ IP protocol. Being in the networking profile, it is really important to understand DHCP and its benefits and disadvantages in detail.
This is a guide to DHCP Advantages. Here we discuss the introduction and various advantages of DHCP for better understanding. You may also have a look at the following articles to learn more –