A domain name is a more readable way of expressing a web address (i.e. "thehosthunter.com") that points to an IP address. An IP address is a number given to each computer on the internet. It is much like a street address or telephone number, but for a computer. Internet protocol (IP) is the way in which IP addresses talk to one another. It is the convention used for processing packets of information sent between computers on the internet.

A domain name is a more readable way of expressing a web address.

Some computers have the same IP address for a very long time. These IP addresses are called "static IP addresses". Some computers change their IP from time to time. These IP addresses are called "dynamic IP addresses".

The Internet is based on IP addresses, not domain names. The format of an IP address is a numeric address (32-bit) expressed as four numbers separated by periods. Each of these four numbers can be between zero and 255. An example of an IP address is: 1.210.12.180. These IP addresses must be translated from domain names.

In order to translate an IP address from a domain name, we need a DNS server. DNS stands for Domain Name System. Every Web server must use a DNS server to translate domain names into IP addresses.

(URL) is another name for a web address.

All domain names have an extension at the end of their URL. The most commonly used domain name extensions are: ".com", ".net" and ".org".

There are also country-specific domain name extensions. For example, Canada has the .ca domain extension and Israel has the .il domain extension.

Uniform Resource Locator (URL) is another name for a web address. It is a simpler way to remember the identity of a computer on the internet. URLs usually contain www. The www stands for World Wide Web).

URLs can be broken down into several parts:

       →   Protocol - Usually it is the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP).
       →   Separation characters - usually this is a colon and two slashes ( :// ).
       →   The actual address of the host - (thehosthunter.com).
       →   Occasionally, there is a path following the address, as in the case of a pdf or word document.
       →   At times there may also be a path following the address for a script.


The URL of this page is http://www.thehosthunter.com/WhatIsaDomainName.php

       →   http is the protocol
       →   thehosthunter.com is the web site
       →   /WhatIsADomainName.php is a script

When starting a web site, you'll need a domain name. Most web hosting companies offer a domain name free of charge when you sign up for their web site hosting service. For a listing of website hosting companies that offer a free domain name, go to the Website Hosting Power Search at www.thehosthunter.com and choose "Free" for the domain name fee.