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IPv4 (Internet Protocol version 4) is one of the major versions of the Internet Protocol (IP) used to identify and communicate with devices connected to the Internet and computer networks. IPv4 is an older and still very commonly used standard for IP addresses, although it is gradually being replaced by newer standards such as IPv6 (Internet Protocol version 6).

Here are some basic characteristics of IPv4:

32-bit address: IPv4 addresses are represented by 32-bit numbers and are usually written in decimal form separated by periods, for example This limitation to 32 bits limited the total number of possible IPv4 addresses to about 4.3 billion.

Hierarchical structure: IPv4 addresses are hierarchically structured and allow data to be routed through the Internet infrastructure. Each network has its own unique IP address and netmask, which allows data to be properly routed to its destination.

Public and private IP addresses: There are public IPv4 addresses that are visible on the Internet and private IPv4 addresses that are used inside private networks such as home networks or corporate intranets.

Address exhaustion problem: One of the main problems with IPv4 is the exhaustion of available addresses due to the rapid growth of connected devices and services on the Internet. This problem has led to the need for new standards such as IPv6, which has a much larger address range.

NAT (Network Address Translation): Due to the lack of public IPv4 addresses, NAT has become a common technology that allows multiple devices on a private network to use a single public IP address to access the Internet.

IPv4 remains an important standard today, but its limited addressing capability has led to a growing transition to IPv6, which has a much larger number of possible addresses and is designed to meet the future needs of connected devices and services.

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