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Text Your Computer’s IP to Yourself

Dakotah

 When you try to connect to your home computer via it's IP only to find it's changed, it can be pretty frustrating. If you have a Mac, make it send it's new IP to your phone (or email).

If you ever run any kind of web-accessible software on your mac at home like a web server, remote bittorrent client, remote desktop, et cetera you know its a major bummer when you go to connect from elsewhere and it times out because your dynamic IP changed. Your computer now has a proverbial wall up blocking your access directly but if you’re like pretty much everyone, you leave your mail client open and checking for emails. To continue the wall metaphor, you can’t go through it but you can still go over it!

The trick is to get your computer to answer an email that will trigger it to get it’s IP and send it to your email (or in this case your mobile’s text email address.)

Enter Automator

You will want to make an Automator workflow (which you will later save as an application) that will:

  1. Open a website that display’s your computer’s IP
  2. Extract that text (IP)
  3. Put it in an email and send it to you (in my case my text address)

Note: You can use a website like myipaddress.com to get your IP but the problem is it has all the HTML with it which will look like crap in an email or split the text into like 10 of them. You can use I Can Haz IP.

You can find the first three actions under the Internet category and obviously the last two under Email. You can just use your email if you have a smartphone but I personally think its way doper to put my [PHONENUMBER]@tmomail.net address for a simple SMS.

tmmip-auto.png

After you’ve created that save it as a workflow so you can modify it later if you need to but also as an application. It’s the application that will actually be run by the AppleScript in the next step.

Open up Script Editor and type this in it where textmemyip is the filename of the Automator application you just saved. Make sure they’re in the same directory like in Documents.

Save that as a script where you saved the application. Note that anytime you try to open that in Script Editor, even if you open the program first and open it through File » Open it will run. It makes testing a PITA so be prepared.

tmmip-se.png

Save that as a script where you saved the application. Note that anytime you try to open that in Script Editor, even if you open the program first and open it through File » Open it will run. It makes testing a PITA so be prepared.

Lastly open up Mail then Preferences and create a rule to run the script, which will run the Automator application.

tmmip-mr.png

Some people might want more protection by using a more coded subject message and specifying your own email address as an additional condition (specifying “all” conditions met) but I personally aren’t worried about accidentally getting my own IP from somebody else’s subject. Furthermore there’s no telling what email address I might use to send the email from anyway.

So there you have it: your computer will get it’s own IP and sent it to your email or text message. Just make sure Mail receives new messages on a short enough basis if you’re still using POP3 so you don’t have to sit around waiting for it.