How to configure a Router to work as a DHCP Server.

Satish Tiwary's picture
DHCP server configuration in router

As we know ip addresses can be assigned to a end device in two way.

  • Static
  • Dynamic

In static way network admin or system admin or user manually assigned ip address on the device, but if the number of devices are much more and you dont want to take the headache for assigning the ip addresses, then it become so teasing and time taking to manually assign ip address to every device. To solve this problem, Dynamic way of ip assigning is used.


DHCP is a protocol that is heavily used to assign IP addresses automatically over LAN networks. If you are interested in understanding how DHCP works, then refer the below blog post.


Read: How DHCP works


The above post will take you through the working of DHCP as well as its configuration in linux system. However similar to most networking devices, a network router can also be configured to act as a DHCP server.


This tutorial will take you through the simple commands required to get it configured on your router.


Step 1: First Configure Ip Address on the Router Fast Ethernet Port:

Router#config terminal
Enter configuration commands, one per line.  End with CNTL/Z.
Router(config)#int fa0/0
Router(config-if)#ip address
Router(config-if)#no shut
Step2: Configure the Router to become a DHCP Server:
This step involves two sub steps that are required to be carried out. The first one is to create a DHCP address pool. This can be done by the below command on your cisco router.
Router(config)#ip dhcp pool cisco
The second thing to do here is to assign a network subnet to the just created pool. This network assignment can be done in two different ways. These ways are simply two methods used to describe the subnet. The first one is netowork and subnet mask form, the second method is to do it via CIDR form.


Step 3: Assign a gateway to the subnet

Every subnet has its own gateway. It does not matter what the gateway ip address is. But normally people give the first ip address in the subnet as gateway. Let's give the ip as the gateway for our created subnet in DHCP as a gateway. This can be done our our router as shown below.



Now apart from the gateway, the client's who gets ip addresses from this address pool, can also be provided with a dns server ip address. This DNS server IP address will be used by the clients for name resolution.


And at last we exit from the poll configuration mode using exit command.


Now If you want to block a certain ranges of IP ADDRESS you can use the below command.

Router(config)#ip dhcp excluded-address

Above command will block ip ranges from to to be used in this network.


Let me show you the Topology Diagram for above configuration.

You can see below the diagram of the above configuration. we have taken a router here and configured it to use as a DHCP Machine.

You can see below three PC connected with the router with the help of switch are getting ip address through router dynamically because we have configured this router to act as a dhcp server now.

router as a dhcp server


Now we can if you are using static routing configuration even you can use any or all of your router as a DHCP server,

In below Diagram we will see the static routing configuration along with one of it's router configured to act as a DHCP Machine.


Now See Configuration on Router0

Router#config terminal
Enter configuration commands, one per line. End with CNTL/Z.
Router(config)#hostname R1
R1(config)#int fa0/0
R1(config-if)#ip address
R1(config-if)#no shut


R1(config)#ip dhcp pool cisco
R1(config)#interface se0/0/0
R1(config-if)#ip address
R1(config-if)#clock rate 64000
R1(config-if)#no shut

Now See the configuration on Router1

Configure both fast ethernet and serial port one by one here on second router.

First we are going to  configure serial port of router.

Router#configure terminal
Enter configuration commands, one per line. End with CNTL/Z.
Router(config)#interface se0/0/0
Router(config-if)#ip address
Router(config-if)#no shutdown


Now we will configure fast Ethernet Port of Router


Router(config)#int fa0/0
Router(config-if)#ip address
Router(config-if)#no shutdown
%LINK-5-CHANGED: Interface FastEthernet0/0, changed state to up



Few commands we need to know if you are working with DHCP SERVER.

#dhcp show
#show ip dhcp bindings


Commands you need to know if you are getting your ip from a DHCP Server.


>ipconfig /renew
Rate this article: 
Average: 3.5 (704 votes)


well explained

thank u for giving ur best.

good information regarding routers. well done.

HI Team, is it possible to configure DHCP server in two Routers [Rouer A Router B], Incase if any one router fails the second router should take the IP address from Dhcp, is it achievable..

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