What exactly is a domain name?Ok, you know that when we talk about an Internet domain (also called a "virtual domain") we mean the name given to a website to put it in the browser and be able to visit it.
But why is it done this way? Are the web pages stored in the hosting directly under this domain name?
Web browsers actually access Internet sites (which are so richly stored in their hosting) through an IP (Internet Protocol) address, a very long number of the type 220.127.116.11 that helps to know which server they are on.
This logically has 3 main very clear advantages:
- A site's domain is much easier to remember than its IP (imagine calling your friends by their postal addresses instead of their name).
- It allows to have many more sites on the Internet, because nowadays many web domains can share for example the same IP of the web server where they are hosted (then internally the server knows which domain is being accessed).
- It is much more flexible for example when changing your site from one web hosting to another, because the IP may change but the domain will remain the same (imagine warning everyone that you have changed your IP).
How does it work?Well, it's very simple.
You know the domain of the site you want to visit and all you need is a system that "translates" that domain into an IP that your web browser can understand. And that is precisely what the DNS or Domain Name System does.
So the DNS server, as my friend Juan Carlos would say in this Internet master class, would become the "phone book" that web browsers use to find out where the site you are looking for is by its domain name.