This article is about addresses and corresponding names that identify resources in the Internet.
A domain name locates an organization or other entity on the Internet. Domain names are formed by the rules and procedures of the Domain Name System (DNS).
A domain name is the name that identifies a website. For example, “t-systems.com” is the domain name of T-System's website. A single web server can serve websites for multiple domain names, but a single domain name can point to only one machine.1)
The Domain Name System (DNS) is a hierarchical distributed naming system for computers, services, or any resource connected to the Internet or a private network. It associates various information with domain names assigned to each of the participating entities.2)
The “com” part of the domain name reflects the purpose of the organization or entity. It is called the top-level domain name. The “t-systems” part of the domain name defines the organization or entity and together with the top-level is called the second-level domain name. The second-level domain name maps to and can be thought of as the “readable” version of the Internet address.3)
Every domain name has a suffix that indicates which top level domain (TLD) it belongs to. Top Level Domains (TLDs) are the suffixes that appear at the end of an address (after the “dot”). TLDs can be either a country code such as
or a generic TLD (gTLD) such as
There are currently 21 gTLDs. Some are reserved or restricted to particular types of organizations (e.g. .museum, .gov) and others are open for registration by anyone (.com, .org).4)
Today exists over 270 TDLs and now you can also order internationalized domain names. In the middle of 2013 there will be over 100 new TLDs available, look here:
A second-level domain (SLD) is the portion of a Uniform Resource Locator (URL) that identifies the specific and unique administrative owner associated with an Internet Protocol (IP) address. The second-level domain name includes the top-level domain name. For example, in t-systems.com “t-systems” is a second-level domain. “t-systems.com” is a second-level domain name and includes the top-level domain name of “com”. Second-level domains can be divided into further domain levels. These subdomains sometimes represent different computer servers within different departments.5)
Domain-Hosting includes registration, and usually in addition, the operation of the domains. There are many domain-hosting providers. Here are a few examples:
Because of the very different contents of these offers, it is very difficult to compare the individual providers. Therefore, it is important to know your own requirements exactly. Than you can choose the correct provider for you.
ICANN - Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers