What Is A Domain Name?

What is a domain name? A domain name is the letters or numbers that follow the www in most web addresses that you see. A domain name is the letters or numbers that follow the www in most web addresses that...

A domain name is the letters or numbers that follow the www in most web addresses that you see. It is a way of registering a space for yourself on the Internet and points that domain name to the hosting server where you've chosen to have your files hosted. So, when a user types in www.joesmith.com the general backbone of the Internet automatically searches for where that domain name is connected to a hosting server and that's what eventually brings up the information that's held on that hosting server. That happens instantaneously, but a domain name is something that you need to register. You generally have to pay a yearly fee which is anywhere from as little as a couple of dollars up to pretty expensive. Often times the name that you want or need might already be owned and you may have to buy it from someone else. If it's open, generally speaking you can get the name for under or around $10 a year. Once you own that space on the Internet you'll be listed in a directory that all of the registered domain name owners are in. And as long as you keep registering it, you will own it forever. Basically it's very similar to your house address or phone number - it's just an identification code or number that represents the information that's behind it.


Right no one can purchase the name once you own it. The only way that they can use that name is to buy it from you. There are lots of different ways that you register a domain name if you find that the name you've chosen is not available with .com following. There's also .net and .org and .biz and .info. There are lots of different extensions available that you will see when you go to register for a domain name. Generally what happens is you type in the name that you are hoping you can get and either they'll show you it's available or if not they'll show all the other ways that you could organize the name in order to make it available - sometimes that might involve putting a dash in it or adding a number after it. It's very similar to when you create a new e-mail address and the address that you've chosen is not available, so they'll offer you some other ways to organize the name to try to get it as close to what you want.


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