The Domain Name System (DNS) is a naming system that translates a website’s URL or name to a numerical IP address. When a person searches for a domain name, for example www.livecity.com, they will type that URL and go to the website. The computer and Internet Service Provider (ISP) do not know how to find the site by its URL or domain name alone but rather by the IP address associated with that URL. An IP address is a series of numbers associated with the exact physical location of servers associated with the domain name or URL. IP stands for Internet Protocol. Internet Protocol (IP) is the principal communication protocol the internet uses to relay datagrams across networks.
A simplified analogy is to think of Domain Name System as the all-inclusive phone book for the internet. It lists both names and numbers; the name is great, but only by calling the number will you actually reach the person/business. If it were not for DNS, navigating the internet would be chaos. The DNS is updated rapidly if an IP address or website name changes. In short, the DNS assigns domain names and maps the names to IP addresses. It also designates authoritative name servers for every domain.
Using a client-server model, the Domain Name System operates within a distributed database system. Every domain has at least one Authoritative Domain System name server that publishes information on the domain name servers associated with it and subordinate domains.
There are two types of Authoritative Name Servers: master and slave. The master server stores original or masters of data; the slave server stores copies of the master or original.
The process goes like this. You register a domain name with a domain registry. The registry requires a primary name server and a secondary server. This is important because if the first or primary server should fail, service can still continue through the secondary name server. Root name servers are at the top of the distributed database hierarchy, the ultimate authority.
What is DNS lookup?
If you need to resolve a problem with a Top Level Domain (TLD), you query the Root Name Server. A TLD is best understood as the last three letters of a domain name, after the dot. The extension might be .com, .net, or .org, or even an international extension, such as .uk. Those letters represent different purposes of the domain, such as .com for commerce and .org for organizations and educational institutes. A Root Name Server (RNS) query is called a DNS lookup very simply because you are “looking up” the information you need on the domain. A reverse lookup is when you know the numerical IP address and you want to know what domain names are associated with that IP address.
Domain name registration
Livecity.com owns a Domain Name System that allows you to conduct a domain search across all common extensions (.com, .org, etc.) to find your ideal domain name. If you find your desired name is already taken, you can search for other relevant names. Livecity helps its customers to secure the domain name for up to 10 years, and offers free website development tools as well and superior customer support.
A memorable domain name is one of the greatest weapons in a webmaster's arsenal. It makes promotional efforts stick, it gives the website a sense of authenticity and authority, and it prevents competitors from latching onto the idea later. Finding an official domain name can be frustrating though, especially with so many good ones already taken. Make it easier by coming up with something that's unique to your particular website. Learn from those who came before you, and listen to these ten tips for picking perfect domain names.
1. Use descriptive keywords
And what is a domain name really, except for an address that directs the world to your corner of the Internet? Your domain name is your online address, and unlike the street grids and house numbers of real-life contact info, this one has to be as easy to find and remember as possible. It also has to say something immediate about the business or brand, whether that's a call to action, a reminder of the services you provide, or a clever pun about your city. In order to make sure it pops up in search results and describes exactly what you want it to, brainstorm keywords and then get creative with the most important ones.
2. Make sure it's a dot com
It's not mandatory for every successful website to have a domain that ends in ".com". However, it's the wisest move for websites that want to stay visible, because it's still the default for URLs. Your contacts will only have to plug the domain name into the address bar to find you, instead of digging for your card or copying and pasting a link.
3. Keep it short
It might sound counter-intuitive to pick a domain name that's both descriptive and brief, but good keyword phrases are short anyway. If you can find two or three words that sum up your website and are catchy enough to remember, that's great, but one word is even easier to type and remember. Shorter URLs can also weather character limits better, facilitating more social media sharing.
4. Don't copy anyone
Be careful about getting creative with recognizable names and brands, because copyright infringement doesn't make for good PR. In fact, you might be copying another business without even realizing it. Before you finalize any domain name registration, check the phrase for copyrights first.
5. Don't be impulsive
Your domain name will quickly become a part of your online image, so it's important to find one that will work forever. You don't want to be inconsistent by changing your domain name later, especially if customers get used to looking you up that way.
6. Be appropriate
It's good to get creative, but you also want to make sure your name is relevant and appropriate to your particular demographic. If your domain name involves funny word play, you'd better be positive that your target audience will understand it.
7. Stick to the alphabet
Simplicity is best, especially if you want your domain name to be memorable and easy to look up later. Leave out the numbers, symbols and punctuation marks.
8. Make it memorable
Rhymes, keywords, and brief phrases are good ways to make your domain name easy to remember. To make sure it will stick in people's heads, share it with friends and family members and ask them to recall it a few days later.
9. Avoid alternate spellings
Again, you want people to type your domain name into their browser and find your website on the first try. Don't incorporate intentional misspellings or clever abbreviations that could throw them off.
10. Try different combinations
You might settle on the perfect domain name, only to find out it's already registered by someone else. Don't give up on it just yet. Try different combinations of the same phrase, or add words like "the", "a", "my" or "your" onto the front of it. If the other website isn't active or doesn't have anything to do with yours, no one will get the two confused and you can still take advantage of the phrase you found.
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) requires that all domain name registrars provide a publicly accessible record that contains the owner’s personal information. This information is a WhoIs record of the registrant and his or her contacts. Some of the information includes name, address, phone number and email address. A domain privacy service allows you to hide your WhoIs information.
Other information available on WhoIs is date of domain registration, when the domain will expire, where the domain is hosted as well as other technical information. The information for your domain registration is viewable through several tools available on the internet.
Why are WhoIs records public information?
ICANN uses the information you provide for legitimate purposes, such as the verification of ownership of a domain name in case of a transfer request. The information is also critical to law enforcement agencies that may be carrying out investigations into illegal activities carried out over the internet. Some individuals or companies can also use WhoIs information to get in touch with domain owners who are violating property rights, such as copyrights.
What is the problem?
Since the information is readily available immediately after you finish registering your domain, this leaves you susceptible to telemarketers and spammers. The individuals are likely to harvest your information, exposing you to unsolicited and unwanted contact. Since your personal information is available on such a public forum, you are also at significant risk of identity fraud and theft, as well as the possibility of stalkers and harassers getting in touch with you.
Unethical companies have also been known for checking domain expiration dates and sending official-like renewal notices. This is an attempt to have domain owners transfer domains to their firms. Other questionable services one is likely to receive include invoices for service solicitation for search engine submissions.
What should you do to protect your WhoIs registration details?
Domain registers offer a service privacy protection. Once you choose privacy protection services, personal information is not listed in the WhoIs record. The information people get to see is your registrar’s privacy service. However, you still own the domain.
Advantages of domain registration privacy protection
Some of the advantages you reap from domain privacy include:
• Protection against identity fraud and theft.
• Prevention of unwanted direct sales letters and mails bombarding your postal address.
• All your personal contact information is kept confidential.
• You will never receive unsolicited commercials emails.
• It is an excellent way to prevent unwanted phone calls from telemarketers.
Downsides of domain protection
It is critical that you are aware that once you have protected your domain name, you will need to remove the protection if you need to transfer it to another individual or company. This process might require dealing with some red tape.
Some consumer advocacy shows advise clients to check WhoIs records to find out if a business is legitimate before dealing with them. However, one positive step around this problem is ensuring that you provide your customer with as much information as possible. This will negate the need of the client checking WhoIs registration to get your contact information. Another way is providing your customers with a means of getting in touch with you via social networking sites, like Facebook and Twitter.
Domain Name 101: All the fundamentals you should know
One common question every potential web owner asks is what a domain name is. Briefly, a domain name system or DNS is a worldwide-recognized system of assigning addresses to internet hosts (also known as internet web servers). Somehow, like international phone numbers, DNS aids to provide internet servers with memorable, easy to spell addresses. At the same time, domain names help hide the technical Internet Protocol (IP) addresses.
While IP addresses provide exact addresses of the location of a website, domain names act like a cabbie you ask to take you to a specific address, and you get there. Domain names, therefore, provide you with an easy way to reach a particular website without having to remember the exact numeric addresses.
Domain names consist of at least top-level and second-level domains. The top-level domain (or TLD) is that part of the name that is located to the right of the dot. The most common TLDs are .org, .net, and .com. Most domains, sometimes called extensions, can be registered by anyone.
A second-level domain (SLD) is that portion of a domain name located immediately to the dot’s left side and domain extension. For example, for a website addressed, myreallycoolsite.com, the SLD is myreallycoolsite.
A domain name is representative of a physical point available on the internet – the IP address. The Internet Corporation Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) governs the coordination of domain names and IP addresses over the internet. This coordination allows you to locate websites quickly without having to enter IP addresses in your web browser.
Understanding the IP address
The internet protocol address is a unique string of number, such as 22.214.171.124, provided to every individual network, server, and network on the internet. Like an address is used to identify a home or business, the IP address is critical for the identification and location of the information on the internet. The address is also used for supporting communication between networks and devices on the internet.
What is the “WWW” before domain names?
The “WWW” is the subdomain and not part of domain names themselves. For example, when you set up your www and CNAME to point at a particular primary record, your site should be available both at myreallycoolsite.com and www.myreallycoolsite.com. Should your new site be un-reachable without the www, then the CNAME could have been setup incorrectly.
How domains work
Once visitors want to enter your site, they will need to enter the domain name into a web browser, and the browser locates the IP associated with your domain name. It is easier for people to remember your domain name compared to a series of numbers.
What is domain name registration?
Domain registration does not activate your website automatically for visitors when they enter the domain name you chose. Your domain name needs to be associated with a numeric address (IP address) for visitors to get a chance to use your domain name.
After registration of your domain name, you can use it for several things including:
- Holding on to it when you are not sure what you want to do with it
- Protecting your brand online by registering several brand names to prevent others from registering similar names
- Selling it since unused domain names can be an excellent investment
- Completion of registration and setting up your website
What's really in a name? When it comes to the internet – an awful lot. Out of all the various aspects involved in establishing a web presence, you might think that choosing a domain name would be the simple part. In fact, there's rather a lot to take into account.
Sharp and snappy
Many visitors to your website will be coming to you directly by typing in your web address. Having a domain name that's short, sharp, snappy and will stick in the memory is what's needed. It can play a significant part in building brand identity and recognition, so spend enough time coming up with a shortlist of options. Perhaps run some ideas by friends and family members to get their input.
Tell it like it is
Try not to be too clever when selecting a domain name. While an off-the-wall choice certainly worked for Google, you might be better looking at something a little more conservative. Sticking to a brand name is never a bad choice, but using foreign or made-up words can cause issues with spelling and be tough for visitors to remember.
Search engine optimisation
Not that long ago, you could improve a website's ranking in Google and other search engines by adopting a keyword-rich domain name, for example, www.vanhirein(location).com. It's no longer the case that domain names chosen to include certain keywords will boost your website's rankings, so try and be a little more creative.
While initially you might be planning to establish just a single website in one country, it's worth thinking about future expansion and whether it could be worth purchasing .com, .co.uk or .org domain extensions too. While you might not use them straight away, consider the potential impact if those domains were not available a few years down the line.
Back to the drawing board
Before you get too excited about a new domain name that you've come up with, just make sure that someone else hasn't had the same idea. There are an awful lot of registered domain names out there and unless you've had a real marketing brainwave, there's a fair chance you might need to revise your chosen title because it's already in use. Livecity has a free domain name search facility, which makes it simple to run a check on whether a domain name is free in seconds.
It is important to remember that if you are going to have a number of domains then you'll also need to manage them. This can be a major task, but thanks to Livecity's bulk management system it needn't be. It's possible to administer multiple domains through a single interface, ensuring minimum hassle for you.