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Web Services

What Are Domain Names and How Do They Work

This tutorial will look at what the concept of Domain Names, and how they work. Every website on the Internet can be located by its IP address. The IP address is a unique set of numbers, assigned to every computer that has access to the Internet. Our hosting servers all have IP addresses, which you will be included in your welcome email. Anyone looking for your website can enter those numbers in the address bar of their browser, and they will find your website. So, are you going to tell people to look for you on the Internet by just entering 162.86.47.128? (Just an example.) Will anyone remember that?

This is where the idea of Domain Names came about. Instead of having to enter a bunch of numbers, we can now assign a name to those numbers. Domain names can contain letters, numbers and hyphens. They can be hundreds of characters in length, but the shorter the domain name, the better. You can also have more than one domain name pointing at the same website.

A domain name is an easy to remember address that can be translated by domain name servers into server IP addresses. In order for your computer to figure out what IP address to use for a domain name, it has to connect with a name server, which is also called a DNS server. That server connects with another, which connects with another, and so on, until a server is found that knows the correct IP address for the domain name. When you purchase a domain name, you make sure the settings show that all requests for an IP address for that domain name are directed to our hosting name servers. The settings will be in the welcome email you receive when you purchase a hosting account with us.

This concludes the tutorial on domain names, and how they work.



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