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Domain Name

Before you can send a letter to someone, you need to know his/her mailing address. If you want to visit a website, you also need to know its 'address', which is the domain name. Here are some examples of domain names:
  • Google.com
  • Internic.net
  • Yahoo.co.uk
  • Amazon.com
  • Linux.org
  • Natalie-Portman.ws
  • What is a Domain Name?

    Domain name is case insensitive, which means Google.com, google.com and gOOgLE.coM are the same. A dot act as a separator in a domain name. The part after the last dot is called the Top Level Domain (TLD). From the examples above, their TLDs are:
    Domain Name Top Level Domain (TLD)
    Google.com .com
    Amazon.com .com
    Internic.net .net
    Linux.org .org
    Yahoo.co.uk .uk
    Natalie-Portman.ws .ws
    Domain name registrations for the most seen .com, .net, .org are unrestricted and are opened to anyone. They are usually referred to as International TLDs. When the internet started a decade ago, it is recommended that companies should use .com, internet service providers should use .net and organizations should use .org. But today, these rules are no longer engaged and you can register under any international TLDs you want.
    Other international TLDs include .aero (for the air-transport industry), .biz (for businesses), .coop (for cooperatives), .info (for all uses), .museum (for museums), .name (for individuals), and .pro (for professions). But they are not as popular as .com, .net and .org.
    Choose a .com whenever possible! Most internet users are not familiar or even aware of the
    other TLDs. They usually assume all domain names end up with .com.
    Two letter domains, such as .uk (United Kingdom), .ws (Western Samoa) and .jp (Japan) are referred as country code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs) and are corresponded to a country, territory, or other geographic location. The rules and policies for registering domain names under the ccTLDs vary significantly and some are reserved only for the citizens of the corresponding country.
    You might notice that for the some ccTLDs such as .uk or .my (Malaysia), the domain name has an extra portion between the name and the ccTLDs. For example chosenname.co.uk or chosenname.net.my. These arrangements are also depends on the rue corresponding country.
    Some small countries such as Western Samoa (.ws), Tuvalu (.tv) and Belize (.bz) have chosen to offer domain registration of their ccTLD to the public to raise funds for their countries.
    When you register a domain name, you do not need to register the 'www'. When you own a domain name, you can add whatever you want to the front with a dot as separator, such as www.yoursite.com, ftp.yoursite.com, daddy.yoursite.com, mydog.yoursite.com, etc. They are called sub domains.
    Every different subdomain can be configured to serve different purposes or as different websites. Following the tradition, the subdomain www.yoursite.com will be used as your main website address which is actually an alias to yoursite.com. That means your visitors will see the same website no matter they visit www.yoursite.com or yoursite.com. Nowadays, people use sub domains as the addresses for other websites, such as setting up dog.yoursite.com as a website for your dog!

    Why do you need a Domain Name?

    All domain name must be unique and once your registered it, you OWN it until the expiry date. The minimum registration period is 1 year but you can choose to renew it up to a maximum of 10 years.
    You can do whatever you want with the domain name. You can setup a website, setup an email account, or do nothing with it! With all the rights to your domain name, you can decide where to host your site and you can change your host anytime you want, without depending your fortune to any specific host.
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