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An Introduction to Domain Names

An Introduction to Domain Names

A domain name is simply a “front” – they are word sequences users enter in their browser to visit a website but are not a website’s true address. Domain names are attached to DNS (Domain Naming System) servers, which are used to translate numeric addresses (known as IP, or Internet Protocol, addresses) into words. Each site you visit on the Internet has a numeric IP address behind its name, which represents the site’s true address.

Domain names are typically categorized by their extension, which is their identifying code. The three most popular types of Top Level Domains (TLDs), which are domains not associated with a country, are:

.com

Domain names are typically categorized by their extension, which is their identifying code. The three most popular types of Top Level Domains (TLDs), which are domains not associated with a country, are:

.net

Short for .network, this domain extension was originally designed to be used by technical Web sites. However, domains using this extension can be registered by anyone.

.org

Short for .organization. Originally designated for non-profit firms and any other organizations that did not fit under the .com or .net extension, any individual or business may now register a .org domain name.

Domain names can also be assigned using country extensions. Each country has its own domain extension; Pakistan, for example, is .pk, while Japan has been assigned .jp. Most countries have specific rules surrounding exactly who can register domains using their extension and for what purpose.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the organization responsible for the administration of TLDs worldwide, has approved several new extensions that are not specific to any country. These include.

.aero

.biz

.coop

.info

.museum

.name

Each has been designed for a specific use, and is accompanied by certain restrictions.

In searching for your domain name, you may encounter websites offering extensions like .xxx, .free and
.mp3. These are not true extensions endorsed by ICANN; rather, they rely on software solutions to guarantee their accessibility to users. Because ICANN has not approved any of these extensions, however, users that do not have the correct software cannot access sites using these names; therefore, they should be used for supplemental purposes only.
From a functional perspective, country-level domains work just as well as any TLDs, and alternative extensions work just as well. Therefore, don’t necessarily settle for a mediocre TLD when you can get a better one using a different extension using Navicosoft’s services.


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