Website and Domain Names

Most NICs or Network Interface Cards within servers and computers are assigned a unique address known as Internet Protocol or IP address. An IPv4 ip address is a 32-bit numeric address written as four numbers separated by periods. Each number can be zero to 255. An ip address for a dedicated server using NAT (Network Address Translation) or your business computer would look similar to this You can find out what your ip address is by typing ipconfig at the command prompt (Start, Run, ipconfig) on a Windows Server and by typing ifconfig on a Linux Server. You can type this command on your home Windows or Linux or Unix computer as well to find your static dedicated ip address.

When you lookup websites online, your web browser talks to web servers via their IP address. Advances in technology have made it possible to assign words or hostnames to ip addresses. PC's use operating systems like windows or linux operating systems. These operating systems use something called a host file to translate the words into IP addresses. On a Windows computer the host file is stored in the c:windowssystem32drivesetc directory; on Linux and Unix servers the host file is kept in the /etc directory.

Have you ever been to 3111 World Dr. in Orlando Florida? Do you know where that is? You may be able to figure out what location I am talking about but wouldn't it be easier if I said have you ever been to Disney Magic Kingdom? That is essentially name resolution 3111 World Dr. Orlando, Florida 32830 is equivalent to the IP address and Disney Magic Kingdom is equivalent to a hostname. The server space or website hosting is equivalent to the land that the theme park sits on. So when you register for a domain name you get the name but you also must rent or purchase some andquot;landandquot; or server space for your website to reside. Likewise if you rent or buy the server space but do not register a domain name or an address, no one will know how to get to your website. A hostfile will contain lines that look like this: which basically says that the ip address corresponds to the hosname or webserver npsis. Hostfiles are used for name translation for a small number of computers.

Internet Service Providers typically use DNS (Domain Name System) to translate hostnames to IP addresses on the internet. When you type or your own website address, your computer contacts a DNS server to determine what IP address is assigned to the domain name or website address that you entered. All websites, web servers and email servers need domain names if they are to be accessible online.

It is important when selecting your website address that you pick a name that is easy to remember. The domain name should also reflect what your business does. For example the website address gives you a pretty good idea of what tom does for a living and its very easy to remember. You can also reserve multiple related domain names and point them at your website address as well. Have your website design store help you to incorporate several relevant key words into your website design and point all of your relevant website addressees at your website.

If you plan on having a web presence at some point, be sure to go ahead and register your website address now. There are many people and businesses that reserve the most desirable website addresses and resell them at costs much higher than the original reservation price.

Have you hired a web design store or individual web design consultant? Make absolutely sure that you own your website address and not them. By purchasing your domain name yourself, you protect yourself from negligent people and predators looking to take advantage of the fact that you might not know better.

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