What is domain name

What is domain name?

Domain name

If you are new to IT, you probably heard about "domain name" and you might be questioning yourself "What is a domain name ?". Well before we dive deeper into answering the question "what is a domain name? " , let us first clear our self with some basics on "what is a domain name? " then we could dive deeper into defining Domain names, Their types, TLD's, How to register domain name and much more beyond if you keep on reading.

Basics on What is a Domain name?

A domain name in general is the name a website has. But in earlier days of internet websites did not had names and where not always live. In earlier days you need to remember a long digits of numbers to visit a website. like is the server IP address of a website. Just think how hard it would be remember a website if you did not note down it's IP address. This really made internet an ugly and tough thing for visitors. I mean how could a visitor remember the big numerical digit if he wants to visit Facebook or Google. For computers it is more than fine to remember big numerical digits because they operate on binary system but what about us "can we really type the big numerical digit on our web browser each time we want to visit a website? ".

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Simply no, this was the only reasons why the need of domain naming system arrived and one can say that this Domain name invention proved revolutionary to internet. Now people could visit Facebook without necessarily remembering the numeric terms i.e. IP address.
Since we now have domain name system, it is helping both the visitor and the machines at the same time. Now users don't have to type the big numeric terms and computers can still very effectively relate the user query and so them the relevant results by patching the domain names with the server IP of the website. so it sounds more user as well as computer friendly and this makes internet a better place to visit.

Although domain names are simply patched with numeric terms known as IP address but that's not all a domain name consists of. An IP address is there on a domain name to point out the server location of a website but they usually do not make up all of it, like what we see in an IP address.

What is Domain Name format ?

What is a Domain Name format ?

Above we have discussed some basics on what is domain name ?, it's need, evolution etc. It's time to dive deeper into what is domain name?, how is it named, It's format etc.
A domain name has 4 parts:

  1. URL of the domain name.
  2. The "WWW" of the domain name
  3. The body of the domain name
  4. The extension of the domain name
The 1st part of the domain name:

URL is the very first part a domain has. URL is an acronym for Uniform resource locator. The function of  URL in a domain name is to instruct the web browser to point a domain name where.i.e. It's is usually found "http://" in a domain name which instruct the web browser to point a hypertext document usually "html" acronym for hyper text document. If we want to understand in simple terms usually in layman's language http:// in a URL would  mean to point a webpage. In other cases it can be "https://" of even "ftp://". Ftp is acronym for file transfer protocol. A "ftp://" in domain name would suggest the web browser to transfer files. A webmaster would go for ftp in his domain name if he want to permit it's visitors to download files stored on his server, on his website.

The 2nd part of the domain name:

WWW is the Second part a domain has. WWW is acronym for world wide web. The purpose of WWW in a domain name is to tell both the visitors and bots that the domain is a web property. It is now also considered as deprecated since most of the web users no longer type WWW in a domain name. WWW is followed by the actual name of a website.

The 3rd part of the domain name:

The body of the domain name is the third and the most important part of a domain name. The body of domain name is the main remembereable part of a domain name. Users are free to decide the name of the body part. The naming could be done according to ones wish like it could be words or phrases or a combination of letters, words and phrases. The word limit of the body of the domain name is 63 letters but it is always advisable to keep it short usually withing 16 words. There are certain things a webmaster should consider while registering the domain name like shortness,easy to remember and SEO friendly for search engines.

The 4th part of the domain name:

The 4th and the final portion part of a domain name is the domain name extension but what is domain name extension ?.

well, A domain name extension lets user as well as the web browser know more about the origin of a website. i.e. If a domain name ends with an extension ".com"  then this specifies both web browser and the user that this website is a commercial website. Domain name ending with extension ".edu" will mean a website is for educational purpose.
.com extension is most widely used and very popular also. So it is also advisable to go for .com domain name if available. .com,.org and .net extensions are most popular and also a TLD so one should register his domain with these extensions if available. Suggesting that .com,.org and .net are most popular and should be used while registering a domain name does not mean that other extensions are bad or should not be used. Think of wikipedia.org, Wikipedia ends with .org extension and is a very popular site. It's not the extension or name but what matters most is the content of a website.

If you want further info on what a domain name extension is?, then you must know that other than TLD's a domain extension is also based on the geographic location i.e. A country based extension  e.g. ".fr" domain extension simply specifies that this website is from France  ".jp" for japan. A ".in" would mean a website from India. These domain extensions can also be state wide e.g ".ca" represents the California state of America. These "domain extensions" if used wisely could prove excellent for localized marketing.

What is Top level Domain Name ?

A top level domain name is generally denoted to .com,.net and .org extension. A top level is also denoted as TLD. In the hierarchical domain system a top level domain occupies root zone of DNS(Domain name system).  So every top level domain fills the first level of DNS zone also known as top zone or root zone.
In 1980's, When DNS was designed, the Domain Name Space was given two division:

  1. ccTLD
  2. gTLD

What is ccTLD ?
A ccTLD stands for Country code top level domains. A ccTLD mainly consists of 2 character territory codes.

What is gTLD?
A gTLD stands for generic Top level domain. A generic top level domain category was made to  represent a set of categories domains ranging from different multi level organization. These multi level organization ranges from government sector, Education sector, Commercial sector, Military sector, Organization, Network and International sector.
  • Top level domain for government sector - .gov
  • Top level domain for Education sector- .edu
  • Top level domain for Commercial sector- .com
  • Top level domain for Military sector- .mil
  • Top level domain for Organization- .org
  • Top level domain for Network - .net
As the internet grew overtime, It become demanding to create additional generic top level domains. According to the sources in October 2009 there were 21 generic top level domains and around 250 two letter country top domains on the internet but as ICANN started a new policy towards naming domain names, It became possible to name new top level domains with new extension.

What is Second level Domain name?

A second level domain name is also called a lower level domain name. A second level domain name denoted with SLD occupies the second position in Domain Hierarchy system of DNS.
A second level domain comes just after Top level domain in the DNS. i.e. A second level domain assigns the left position after top level domains. e.g. Google.co.in here ".in" is the top level domain representing India while ".co" in the left of ".in" in the domain name Google.co.in represents a second level domain name.

What is Third level Domain name?

A third level domain name is the domain name which is writeen left to second level domain name. A third level domain name comes just after second level domain name.
Like third level domain there can also be fourth level domain and fifth level domain and so on. Each of these level domain name comes after one other and each of them are written on the left side one after the other. A typical example of a domain name with 4 level of doamin levels is "www.sos.state.oh.us". Here www stands for world wide web. "SOS" in the domain name is called the sub domain of "state.oh.us". "State" here also known as the sub domain name of "oh.us", "oh" is the sub domain name of "us" and last but not least "Us" here also means a top level domain name sub domain to "world wide

We all know that domains names are registered keeping in mind either the name of the company, or product,or service.e.g. A company based domain name could be something like "Intel.com" or "hp.com" while a product based or service based domain name could be like "webhostingasia.blogspot.com" or even "gmail.com".
As discussed earlier that a domain contains a special componant in it which tells the web browser about the type of web server a query is seeking i.e. www.wallpaperdownload.biz could represent a web browser to seek an html file. while ftp:wallpaperdownload.biz could mean to seek ftp for document download. mail:wallpaperdownload.biz could mean to seek an email server.

One important note here to make is that each of the domain names are seperated by a fullstop(.) mark.

 Domain Name Registration

Domain registeration means to registering a name for your business, service or product online. Domain names registration have become compulsary for both big business and small business. A business or even a small firm could not even think of standing out in the market without protecting their business name online. With more than a million of domains registered daily it has become compulsary to secure the business name online from our competitors since registering a domain name could cost only from $4 to $20 dependimg on the domain extention one decide to register for his/her business or firm.

What is the history of Domain name Registeration?

The history of domain name registeration is just boggling to mind and I am sure it will boggle yours also when you gonna be reading the history of the daomain registeration.
The first domain and offcourse a TLD to get registered is "symbolics.com". Symbolics.com was registered in 1985 by a computer system firm in Massachusetts USA. But later sold to another party with an undisclosed price.
By the passing of 1992 more than 1500 ".com" were on the internet. By the end of december of 2009 there were more than 192 million domain registered which consisted a large no of TLD ".com" which as of date 04\15\2010 were estimated to be 84 million domain names out of which 11.9 millions domains were online businesses and ecommerce web sites, 4.3 million domain names were of entertainment industry, 3.1 million domain names dealing with finance and around 1.8 million web sites on sports sector.

The latest records(july 2012) shocked everyone. There were more ".com" TLD registered this year than all other domain registered this year in together.

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