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How Domain Name IP Address Works in URL Technology

September 9, 2009

The basics of domain name technology
By Simon Grabowski, CEO of GetResponse.com
The basics of domain name technology

What exactly is a domain? How does it work? What’s it’s purpose?

Allow me to explain. The Internet is a massive computer network comprising of millions of different systems connected together. Just like the millions of houses that appear in any major city around the world, each computer has a specific “address” that’s assigned to it.

In computer speak, this is called an IP address (as opposed to a “postal address” which would be used to keep track of houses in a city).

Every one of these computers connected to this massive network has an IP address assigned to it, which will look something like the following.

216.123.456.12

Now with the shear amount of computers connected to this global metropolis, imagine the chaos of having to remember the IP address of each website you visited instead of its .com address. It just wouldn’t work – you’d have such a hard time. For example…

Who hasn’t been to Yahoo.com and searched for something? Or loaded up hotmail.com to check their email? Instead of plugging in “www.yahoo.com” into your browser, imagine having to type a long, hard to remember IP address that takes you to their website. Too tiresome. Extremely hard to market. Impossible to brand. You get the picture.

Check to see if YOUR Domain Name is available by typing it into the search box directly below (choose from .com, .net, .org, .info, biz and .us domains). There is no charge to check availability of domains, but if you decide to purchase your domain name now, our pricing starts at only $9.99 Compare our prices here! or you can Search the WHOIS database to see who owns any domain! If you want to transfer to take advantage of our lower prices, transfer your domain name.

So instead, some bright spark came up with a new idea – an idea that allows both words and numbers to be assigned to a computer name. The result is what you know today as an “Internet domain name”.

Let’s take a look at the typical domain name and dissect how it works. For argument’s sake, we’ll take our very domain name…

Bizmint.com

The end part, “.com”, is called the top-level domain (tld). This is the identifying part of the name which separates the actual domain name and was originally intended to put certain domains into different categories. i.e .com was meant for commercial use, .org was for nonprofit organizations, and .net for used for Internet ISP-type companies.

You’ve no doubt seen many different TLDs yourself – such as .uk for UK domain names, .es for Spanish names, .de for German domains, etc.

The other part, “bizmint” in this case, is a word/phrase assigned to that particular TLD which identifies where the domain should belong. This part can be anything up to 63 characters long, and can contain numbers, letters or dashes (providing the domain doesn’t start or end with a dash), but it can’t contain any special characters – so things like “?” or “$” are out of the question.

.com is by far the most popular TLD, and with good reason. It’s got marketing appeal, brand-naming recognition and it’s more popular than any of the other domain extensions put together. We live in the “dot-com revolution”… if a man or woman succeeds online, they’re known as a “dot-com entrepreneur”… if a venture fails, we call it a “dot-bomb”.

Heck, even the shade of paint I have in my office has been labeled by the company as “dot-com”. This kind of appeal is unrivaled by any other TLD – and it’s the sole reason why .com is the primary choice for many.

How a domain name is registered

At the start of the Internet era, a .com domain name would cost around $100 to register for two years. Nowadays, you can get them for around $10 a year, depending on the cost set by the Registrar.

What’s a Registrar? It’s simply a company that has been setup to provide an interface for registering domain names and assigning them to specific networks. The Internet works by having thousands of “DNS databases” around the world which contain the domain name information – i.e. it says that yahoo.com needs to be assigned to their Yahoo servers.

Since the domain name game has become deregulated, more and more registrars have come onto the scene, charging anywhere from $8.95 to $50 per year. What’s the difference? None – you still get a domain name assigned to your web server. It’s just that many people don’t know other, cheaper companies exist. And these cheaper companies may still be as good, and fortunately charge even less.

The difference between a “domain” and a “website”

Having your own .com domain name doesn’t mean you automatically have your own website. Here’s what you need to have a website…

o A web server which contains your website data. o Your own domain name which points to that server

A web server is simply a computer that’s permanently connected to the Internet and has been setup as a machine with the sole dedication of serving web pages. Whilst it’s technically possible to turn your own home computer into a web server, in 99.9% of cases it’s neither practical nor recommended.

Instead, there are literally thousands of “web hosting” companies in existence that have dedicated machines stored in dedicated, secure network locations around the world. With prices from $10 per month to thousands of dollars monthly (depending on what you buy), they’ll hook you up with webspace and a whole load more facilities (such as email, etc). Then on top of this, you need to buy a domain name to point to that web server.

Check to see if YOUR Domain Name is available by typing it into the search box directly below (choose from .com, .net, .org, .info, biz and .us domains). There is no charge to check availability of domains, but if you decide to purchase your domain name now, our pricing starts at only $9.99 Compare our prices here! or you can Search the WHOIS database to see who owns any domain! If you want to transfer to take advantage of our lower prices, transfer your domain name.

For instance, if you bought “shopping.com” and pointed it to a web host that charged you monthly for hosting webspace, every time someone goes to shopping.com (or www.shopping.com), or sends an email to webmaster@shopping.com (or whatever email addresses you set up on your web host’s machine) they’d in fact be connecting to your web server which would then serve the pages they requested.

A domain name is completely separate from your web server. You can change your web server/web host a thousand different times and simply update your domain name settings to point to the new server. It allows you to have one central presence no matter where you host your website. In fact, your domain name is probably the one thing your customers will ever remember you by.

Which is exactly why domain name branding is one of the most valuable things you can ever do with your online business. It’s vitally important that your website name appropriately reflects the kind of image you wish to present. It doesn’t necessarily have to be dead true to your business dealings, only with the image – examples…

monster.com is a job search website. People will always remember a generic name such as this because it’s easily associated. It’s a one word, two syllable name. And when you visit their website, their logo immediately says “monster”. Instead, they could have had a name such as “find-a-job-here.com” – but that’s complicated to remember. When you want to visit the site next month, was it “findajobhere.com”? or did it have hyphens, or was it “get-a-job-here.com” or what? hmm… hard to remember, lost customers, not branded properly.

Instead, the company chose to use a generic one-word name. Think about it, it’s what all of the top websites do – yahoo.com (what does that mean anyway?), hotmail.com, amazon.com, jungle.com – they’re all easy to remember.

Unfortunately, because of the shear amount of domains that have been registered, and continue to be registered daily, it’s just impossible to snag a one-word domain name without hunting it like a hawk. And it’s only once-in-a-million that such a name will ever be made available.

However, the purpose of BizMint.com is to empower you with the tools and knowledge to learn how to make use of domain names that are expiring daily, and use what’s available in order to successful brand your site.

P.S.: With BizMint you can instantly grab amazing, previously unavailable domain names and turn an investment of just pennies into a multi-thousand dollar return! We’ll show you how! Don’t wait, sign up NOW.
About the Author
Simon Grabowski is the owner of many online businesses that generate close to a million dollars in annual online sales. His latest is the BizMint.com, a unique, sophisticated tool that helps you to explode your online business by searching and registering from millions of expired and soon-to-expire domain names. See http://www.bizmint.com/


Check to see if YOUR Domain Name is available by typing it into the search box directly below (choose from .com, .net, .org, .info, biz and .us domains). There is no charge to check availability of domains, but if you decide to purchase your domain name now, our pricing starts at only $9.99 Compare our prices here! or you can Search the WHOIS database to see who owns any domain! If you want to transfer to take advantage of our lower prices, transfer your domain name.

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