Exploring Domain Names

Have you ever wondered how hard it would be to memorize a random set of numbers just to see the Google homepage? I mean, what if you had to type a group of hexadecimal numbers with dots in between them instead of just typing “google.com”? For exactly this reason, the domain name system is a savior!!

Exploring domain names
Photo by Cookie the Pom on Unsplash

Consider the Domain Name System as our contacts page. We have names of certain people, and phone numbers that point to the respective people. The Domain Name System is very similar. The only difference is that instead of a corresponding phone number, every name (I mean the name of the website) has a corresponding IP address that points to the server that hosts the website. Every time we try to call someone, we only have to type the name of the person and tap; the call is automatically placed to the required phone number. Similarly, we type “www.facebook.com” and not its numerical equivalent (thank God for this!). Of course, machines do not understand Facebook, so, when we type facebook.com, the corresponding IP address is “called”, and then loads the Facebook page.

Now, let us understand the structure of a domain name.

Let’s take “ www.en.example.com/file “ as an example.

TLD (Top Level Domain)-

Here, the “.com” part is known as the TLD (Top Level Domain). These represent the highest level of name resolution. These tell the general purpose of the website (generally!).

  • For example — ‘.com’ for company, ‘.org’ for an organization, etc.
  • Other than that, TLD’s can also be country-specific. For example — ‘.us’ represents the United States, ‘.in’ represents India, ‘.jp’ represents Japan, etc.
  • TLD’s can also be .edu (for educational institutes) or .gov (for governments).

Name of website/primary domain -

In our case, “example” is the name of the website. But it can be anything — like Facebook, Google, Wikipedia, etc.

Subdomain -

In our case, the subdomain is “en”. Sub-domains usually organize or navigate to different divisions of a website. For example, m.example.com may represent the mobile version of the website.

Name of the web-server -

It can be something like www (world wide web). Even if you type the website name without typing www, it's perfectly fine.

A specific section of the website —

/file represents a specific section from the website.

That was just a brief introduction to domain names and their importance!

If you want to read more such articles on technology, do follow my Medium account — https://satheprajakta.medium.com/

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Prajakta Sathe

Prajakta Sathe

I write about data science and UI UX design and other exciting stuff!!