The environment is Debian, although the answer will apply to all distributions.

  • This is now a community wiki. Feel free to contribute any other methods that works. – GeneQ Jul 20 '09 at 2:29

You can also use this command:

dhclient -r interface

Where interface is the device you want to get a new address for.

dhclient -r eth0

The -r flag forces dhclient to first release any leases you have, you can then use this command to request a new lease:

dhclient eth0

From man dhclient:

   -r     Tell  dhclient  to  release the current lease it has from the 
          server.  This is not required by the DHCP protocol, but some 
          ISPs require their clients to notify the server if they wish 
          to release an assigned IP address.
  • Also a good way to do it :) – Frenchie Jul 20 '09 at 2:31
  • 1
    After this command my Debian failed to get a new IP, but after a reboot I was assigned to a new one, so it work's! – Damien Sep 9 '11 at 9:16
  • 3
    For me this only releases the lease and uncofigures the interface. No new IP is obtained afterwards. – cgogolin Jan 15 '15 at 9:33
  • Which is a total bummer if you're primary interface is ssh... – Eric Nord Apr 3 '19 at 3:55

Either of the following should get it to renew.

/etc/init.d/networking restart


ifdown eth0; ifup eth0

I wouldn't recommend running either over an SSH connection, although you'll probably get away with the first one if it doesn't come back with a new ip address.

  • 1
    SSH connections will tolerate a few seconds of "disconnect" provided that you get the connection back up in a few seconds at the same IP address. Under these conditions, I have never lost a connection during /etc/init.d/networking restart, even when it was taking more than 5 seconds to come back up... – Avery Payne Jul 20 '09 at 2:58
  • Doesn't this require administrative priviledges? – Peter Mortensen Dec 11 '15 at 12:21

Would comment p.campbell, but I have only 1 reputation and therefore cannot, first I review installed interfaces:

ip addr

release IP from selected interface (e.g. eth0, eth1, enp1s0, sit0, wlan0,...):

sudo dhclient -r *interface*

request new IP from DHCP server (alert on error):

sudo dhclient -1 *interface*

check IP:

ip addr

Ubuntu 16.04 LTS confirmed

  • Am baffled why this isn't the accepted answer. But this works, assuming a working DHCP server. – Chaim Eliyah Dec 28 '19 at 6:53

If you're using the dhcpcd tool then:

dhcpcd -k interface
dhcpcd interface

The first says to stop the daemon, and the second says to start it again.


If the MAC address of the interface isn't changed, the DHCP server may assign it the same address when renewing. Therefore, a simple release and renew with dhclient may not acquire a new address. Change the MAC address and acquire a new IP address with the following commands. Don't forget to write the original down if you need to revert back to it at a later time.

ifconfig <interface> down
ifconfig <interface> hw ether <MAC address>
ifconfig <interface> up
  • This was so helpful, thank you! No number of dhclient -r or ifconfig down gave me a new IP address on my work network, until I changed the MAC address to something random using that command. – Migwell Nov 19 '19 at 0:48
  • Same here, this should be the official answer. – Jonathan Argentiero Dec 2 '19 at 13:29

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.