I have always stored IP addresses as strings in VARCHAR fields in MySQL.
I am currently reading “High Performance MySQL” (O’Reilly) and it mentions the advantages of storing IP addresses as integers in an INT field rather than as a string in a VARCHAR or CHAR field.
So, with the following table:
CREATE TABLE IF NOT EXISTS `ipaddresses` ( `ipaddress` int(11) unsigned NOT NULL ); INSERT INTO `ipaddresses` (`ipaddress`) VALUES (2130706433), (167773449);
To insert a record:
INSERT INTO `ipaddresses` (`ipaddress`) VALUES (INET_ATON('127.0.0.1'));
To read a record:
SELECT INET_NTOA(`ipaddress`) FROM `ipaddresses`;
By the way, if you are retrieving IP Addresses using
$_SERVER['REMOTE_ADDR'], consider a more advanced approach, such as borrowing Zend RemoteAddress class.