You may need to open a port for an application to operate correctly: hence you’ll need to know your port number to do that, but how are you supposed to find it? It’s not as complicated as it sounds. Read on to find out how.
What Is My Port Number?
A port number is a network identifier for a specific application or activity. Every device that connects to the internet utilizes ports to allow several programs to connect simultaneously.
These processes need distinct ports if you surf the web, download files, and print simultaneously. For example, file Transfer Protocol (FTP) data transmissions utilize port 20, whereas HTTPS uses port 443. There are 65,535 ports, although not all of them are accessible to regular users.
While a device’s IP address is assigned to it, port numbers are assigned to various operations and connections on that computer. They are used to identify these processes on the internet and assist the receiving end in determining the function and taking the appropriate response.
Port numbers work in the same way that IP addresses do. The IP address of your computer, for example, is 192.168.11.1, and the file transfer protocol (FTP) port is 20. As a result, the IP address for an open FTP port is 192.168.11.1:20. The server will “understand” your request if it sees this address.
What’s The Difference Between A Port Number And An IP Address?
An IP address is a number that identifies a computer in an IP network and is used to identify where a data packet should go. A system’s port numbers identify a specific application or service.
An Internet Protocol address is a logical address used to identify a network device. Every device connected to the internet gets a unique IP address for identification purposes. Devices can communicate via the internet using this identifying information.
Port numbers are part of the information that allows the identification of senders and receivers of data and a specific application on the devices. 16-bit numbers make up port numbers.
For example, you use file Transfer Protocol (FTP) to request a file transfer from a client, or localhost, to a distant server on the internet.
You must set up both machines to use FTP to transmit files. To transfer the file, the local host’s Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) software layer looks up the port number 21 — which is associated with an FTP request by convention — in the 16-bit port number integer attached to the request.
The TCP layer on the server will read port number 21 and pass the request to the server’s FTP software.
A Step-by-Step Guide To Finding Your Port Number.
A single terminal command is all it takes to get a complete list of your ports and their numbers. You may think of your port number as an extension of your IP address.
When you run the “netstat -a” command, you’ll get a list of your IP address variants along with their port numbers.
If your internet protocol address is 255.255.255, your IP port will be something like 255.255.255:46664 (the port number is 46664). From this perspective, you may think of your port number as an extension of your IP address.
Here’s how to locate your port numbers on various devices.
1. How To Find Your Port Number On Windows
1. To get started, launch a command prompt window (as Administrator) From the “Start\Search box” After typing “cmd,” right-click “cmd.exe” and choose “Run as Administrator.”
2. Hit Enter after typing the following text. netstat -abno
3. Under “Local Address,” look for the port to see your port numbers
2. On A Mac, How Can You Find Your Port Number?
You could check your device’s ports using the “Network Utility” software; however, Apple suddenly eliminated it. To find your port number on macOS, do the following:
Step 1: Type “terminal” into your Spotlight Search (Command+Spacebar).
Step 2: To obtain a complete list of your ports and their numbers, run the command “netstat -an.”
Look for the Protocol, Local Address, Foreign Address, and State headings if there are numerous sections.
In the Local and Incoming IP Address columns, you’ll find your IP number coupled with a port number. You’ll find your IP number linked with a port number in the Foreign Address column.
Meanwhile, the Protocol section displays the port’s communication protocol. UDP (User Datagram Protocol) or TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) will be used.
What’s The Distinction Between TCP And UDP?
Ports are capable of communicating in a variety of ways. The TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) and UDP (User Datagram Protocol) transport protocols, or data transmission mechanisms, that employ port numbers are the most well-known.
Their applications vary widely depending on the scenario. In a nutshell, here’s how the two compare.
1. TCP is more dependable since it must always establish endpoints between transmitting and receiving sites to connect. It ensures that data packets are delivered to the intended recipient. It also keeps track of data to ensure that it is not lost, ensuring that it arrives safely and in order. This protocol is in web browsers and email programs.
2. Because UDP does not require an established connection, it is quicker but less dependable. It also makes it possible to transfer data in the incorrect order. It is lighter and faster than TCP since it does not verify data as extensively. It is vital in operations where speed is critical, such as online gaming and video conferencing.
Why Is It Important To Know Your Port Number?
It gives you more control over the program you’re using. Because applications use specific ports, they must be open at all times to function correctly. Closing them, on the other hand, might boost your security.
You can do a couple of things with your ports:
1. Ports Can Help You Get The Most Out Of Your Internet Connection: You can significantly improve your downloading and streaming experiences by opening and forwarding your ports.
2. Allow Games And Applications To Get Through Firewalls: Some programs and online games use various ports, which might cause issues with your firewall. If you know their port numbers, you can set your device to allow these ports to circumvent your defenses.
3. You Can Detect Open (vulnerable) Ports In Your Devices Or Network: Because ports receive data in packets, those left open can serve as entry points for hackers. Make sure you don’t have any open ports if you want to be more secure.
Open Ports Versus Closed Ports
An open port can accept packets of data in network communication. A closed port refuses to accept connections or ignores any packets addressed. On the other hand, an open port is insufficient to establish a communication channel.
You must set the port with an application that can accept and handle incoming packets. Any incoming packets face rejection if no application is listening on that port. You can also use a firewall scan to shut a port. A firewall sees the port as closed for all packets except those specified.
What Are The Various Types Of Port Numbers, And What Do They Do?
Although there are 65,535 port numbers, you do not use all of them daily.
Limited port numbers, or well-known port numbers, run from 0 to 1023 and are reserved by major corporations. Some of these restricted ports belong to Apple QuickTime, Structured Query Language services, and Gopher services.
Those wishing to register a specific port number can do so between 1024 and 49151. Software businesses usually register these port numbers. Anyone can use dynamic or private ports ranging from 49152 to 65536.
Here are the most widely used ports and the protocols that go with them:
1. Ports 20 and 21 are two of the essential ports globally: FTP is a file transfer protocol that connects a client and a server.
2. Port 22: Secure Shell is one of the numerous tunneling protocols used to create secure network connections, and it uses port 22.
3. Port number 25: The Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) is a popular email protocol that uses port 25.
4. Port number 53: On the modern internet, the domain name system (DNS) is a fundamental procedure that connects human-readable domain names to machine-readable IP addresses. It allows users to load websites and apps without having to type in a long list of IP addresses.
5. Port number 80: The World Wide Web is made possible via the HTTP protocol.
6. Port number 123: Time Protocol keeps computer clocks in sync. It’s a crucial step in the encryption process. The Network
7. Port 443: HTTP Secure (HTTPS) is a secure HTTP version. All HTTPS web traffic routes over port 443. This port is also crucial to any network service that employs HTTPS for encryption, such as DNS over HTTPS.
8. Port 500: The Internet Security Association and the Key Management Protocol assist in establishing secure IP security.
9. Port 3389: Users can connect to their desktop PCs from another device using the Remote Desktop Protocol.
All port numbers listed above are assigned and maintained by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority.
When an internet or other network communication arrives at a server, it is sent to a specific process identified by a port number. All network-connected devices have a standardized port with a number allocated to it. These numbers are set aside for particular protocols and their functions. The above article contains all the information you need regarding your Port number.
I’m William Shands, a tech enthusiast with a Bachelor’s in Information Technology from Georgia Institute of Technology. As an IT Support Specialist at Urban Outfitters, I’m immersed in the world of technology daily. My passion for apps led me to create TechBiva.Com, where I offer detailed reviews of the latest smartphone apps and games. Join me in exploring the ever-evolving landscape of mobile technology!