I have no idea what dhcp means, so I don't know why instead of just showing 'Name ~' as the beginning of each terminal line, it started showing 'Name@dhcp-xx-x' as the format of my username. Is this a virus or did I just accidentally change this? How do I undo it?


1 Answer 1


It is not a virus, nor did you actually change it yourself.

The prompt by default begins with the hostname of your computer. The host name is found by doing a so called "reverse lookup" in DNS of the IP address of your computer.

Every time you connect to a network, you'll get an IP address. The provider of that IP usually determines what the reverse lookup will say. Usually it is your internet provider.

Your ISP has thus chosen "dhcp-xx-x" as the hostname. It probably has some internal meaning to them.

DHCP is the name of a protocol used on networks to automatically deliver IP-addresses (and other configurations) to computers. Seeing this in your hostname typically means that your ISP used DHCP to deliver the IP and accompanying configuration to your computer.

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