Network Address Translation

What Does Network Address Translation Mean?

Network address translation (NAT) is a router function that enables public and private network connections and allows single IP address communication. While there are many public networks worldwide, there is a limited number of private networks. NAT was introduced as an effective, timely solution to heavy network volume traffic.

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Techopedia Explains Network Address Translation

There are more than 350 million Internet users and approximately 100 million hosts. Users want to connect with each other, but IPv4 has limited individual IP addresses to handle client volume.

NAT was introduced to resolve this problem, and manages multiple client requests over one private IP address required by public networks. At NAT’s center is the router, which is used to hide actual public network addresses and readdress them with a new public IP address. For external networks, this new address may appear to be that of the router, although this is not the case.

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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…