Default gateway address: how to find it?

3 min
default gateway written on a keyboard

A default gateway is a crucial element of Internet architecture. You could have noticed it in your computer network configuration or bumped into it when having connectivity troubles. Let’s clarify what it actually is and how you can easily find it in your system settings.

What is the default gateway?

First things first: what is a gateway in telecommunication? It’s a general term, referring to a specific node in a computer network. It serves as a connection between two distinct networks. It can be a dedicated device or software installed on a server connecting, controlling, and interpreting online traffic. Gateways are a way of arranging networks in an orderly manner. For example, a local network in an office can possess a server, which handles all the outgoing internet traffic. This is precisely the role of a default gateway.

All the data sent over the TCP/IP networks are divided into packets. Each of them has a destination IP address, which can be located either within the local network or outside it. If your device knows the local destination, it sends the data directly. But it obviously cannot recognize any given address from all over the Internet. In such a situation, it sends the packets to the default gateway. It is almost always the router, serving as a standard point of the way out from the local network to the Web.

In IPv4 protocol, some specific address groups are reserved for local networks. That’s why you’ll often see very similar addresses of the default gateways on various networks. When you connect online at the office, at your home, or at a restaurant, it could probably look like one of these:,, 192.168.10.

How to find the default gateway

Finding the default gateway address should not be difficult. It is a basic configuration element of any Internet-enabled device. Details depend on your computer, as there are many ways to present similar data. What’s my default gateway? See how can you learn it on several popular operating systems. 

How to find default gateway on Windows

In Windows 10 settings, go to Network & Internet. In the “Status” section, open “Network and Sharing Center”. There you shall see your current online connection, typically named “Wireless Network Connection” or “Ethernet”. Click it to open the properties, and then choose “Details”. The displayed table contains many parameters, including your default gateway IP address.

Another way is to use the command line. Run it by typing ‘Command Prompt’ after opening the Start Menu. Next, enter a simple instruction ‘ipconfig’. It will display a list of IP configurations for all of your device’s network adapters. The active ones shall have a default gateway address assigned.

How to find default gateway on Mac

The user-friendly macOS allows finding the default gateway quite easily. First, open the “System Preferences” from the Apple icon menu. Then, go to the “Network” section and click the “Advanced” button. In the TCP/IP tab, you will find a few addresses, including the one named ‘router’. This is exactly the default gateway. As mentioned above, your router is typically a way out to the Internet for the local network. As a result, its address seen from individual computers is the default gateway IP.

How to find default gateway on iPhone

iOS operating system obviously also contains the default gateway address. You can find it pretty easily. Go to “Settings”, and then tap Wi-Fi. From the networks listed, choose the currently active one to view its configuration. The default gateway address is located in the “IPv4 Address” section, named ‘router’. This name, like on Apple notebooks with macOS, is identical to the default gateway.

How to find default gateway on Android

When you connect to Wi-Fi with your smartphone, it sends and receives data through the default gateway, too. You can find its IP address in the Wi-Fi settings. The details depend on your specific version, but it should be quite straightforward to pinpoint. Swipe down from the top of the screen and long-press the Wi-Fi icon. Then, choose the network you are connected to and unfold the Advanced network details. The default gateway IP address is right there. It could be named either ‘router’ or simply ‘gateway’.

Let’s close this short guide answering a question: why do you need to find the default gateway, anyway? When your network is down, you need to locate the origin of the problem. If you have the connection to the default gateway, then the fault is probably on the side of your Internet provider. Otherwise, the issue is probably local, possibly with your computer. To check this connection, you obviously first must know the default gateway IP.

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