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Guide to Subnet Mask (Subnetting) & Subnet Calculator

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Guide to Subnet Mask (Subnetting) & Subnet Calculator

The IP address is used to identify the host of a network and to uniquely identify a device within the network.

While subnetting is used in conjunction with IP addressing to create several logical addresses within the same network. However, you can use a subnet calculator to calculate subnets accurately and quickly.

In addition, we’ll discuss the different kinds of networks and their importance to computer networking, as well as the subnet calculator. But first, we need to get familiar with IP addressing.

Let’s dive in!

Understanding IP Addressing

The most common host devices for logical addressing are network components like routers and switches, which use Layer 3 of the OSI reference model.

IP addresses are 32-bit logical addresses that uniquely identify hosts on a network.

There are many different types of hosts, including computers, mobile phones, and tablets. A 32-bit binary IP address consists of two parts: The Network address and the Host address.

Additionally, it has 4 octets, each of which contains 8 bits. This octet is divided by a dot in decimal and converted to decimal.

Therefore, it is represented as a dotted decimal. 00000000 to 11111111 is the binary range for an octet, while 0 to 255 is the decimal range.

Network Classes And Subnet Mask

In order to maintain network safety, the internet organisation divides IP addresses into various categories according to their classes.

The subnet mask identifies each class. By categorising a default subnet mask, we can easily determine the type of IP address of the network. In the Internet Protocol, the first octet of an address specifies the class of the address.

The classification is shown with the help of the below table and figure.

Class Ist octet Decimal Range Network/Host ID Default subnet mask
A 1 to 126 N.H.H.H 255.0.0.0
B 128 to 191 N.N.H.H 255.255.0.0
C 192 to 223 N.N.N.H 255.255.255.0
D 224 to 239 Reserved for Multicasting
E 240 to 254 Experimental
  • The class ‘A’ Address ranging from 127.0.0.0 to 127.255.255.255, is reserved for use on loopbacks and diagnostics. It is possible to connect more than 65536 hosts to this network.
  • There are between 256 and 65534 hosts connected to class B networks.
  • There are fewer than 254 hosts connected to the class C network. As a result, the class C network mask is suitable for encapsulating minor networks known as subnetworks. In order to create the mask, we use the bits from class C’s last octet. Hence, the subnet needs to be rearranged and optimised according to the bits’ availability.

Subnetting

Using subnetting, we can create subnetworks or logical networks within a particular network class. The creation of extensive networks is almost impossible without subnetting.

In order to create an extensive network system, each link must have a unique IP address, with each device that participates in the network having that same IP address.

By using subnetting, we can create networks that are comprised of smaller subnetworks that interconnect each node located at different locations within a particular class (A, B, or C).

A unique IP address and subnet mask IP would be assigned to each node on the network.

Switches, routers, and gateways that connect networks have a unique Network ID and a unique subnet mask for each network they link with.

What Is a Subnet Calculator?

IP addressing and subnetting is discussed in detail above. Subnets are formed by dividing an extensive network into small networks that allow different network devices to communicate with each other,

despite being positioned far apart from one another, by assigning them a unique IP address and subnet mask to them for communication with each other.

By entering the subnet mask and the IP address of the specific network as input values, the subnet calculator will provide output for the broadcast IP address, the usable IP range of host devices, the subnet mask, the IP class, and the total number of hosts.

It is possible to calculate the subnet of a network using both IPV4 and IPV6 network protocols.

Conclusion

As we learned in this guide, IP addressing and subnetting are essential in computer networking systems; we also discussed the subnet calculator.

Using IP addressing and subnetting to define subnetworks and IPs within an extensive network is fundamental; as we have mentioned earlier that you can use a subnet calculator to calculate the subnet in seconds.

We hope that this guide is helpful to you. If so, let us know in the comment section.

But if you still have any doubts regarding this topic, feel free to ask us in the comment box below. We will try to answer them all.

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