Why Do You Require a Domain?
This is an issue I bring up because of the fact that last week my boss brought forth the idea of launching a web site for our brand new venture. That itself is not a problem, the problem is that he wants a website, but has not made a decision yet about what it should look like, what it should contain, etc. All that he revealed to me was the name of the website - its domain. So, we now have an address for a future site and nothing apart from that.
The Domain Name
Each web site is hosted on a physical machine. That physical machine has its own physical address, popular also as an IP address. Paying a visit to a website by writing the Internet Protocol address of the machine in your web browser, however, is not the best and most appropriate thing to do, so that was how and why domain names came into being. Thus, a domain pertains to an IP address on the web. After it has been registered, of course.
Registering a Domain Name
To register a domain name, you first need to find a domain name registration provider. Lonex Hosting offers an optimal solution for my present and prospective projects - they provide a Domain Manager plan, which can be easily upgraded to a hosting plan at a later time - when my boss finally decides what objective the site will serve.
Hence, to register a domain name, you have to pick a name for your website. Then, you need to choose a Top-Level Domain - this is what follows the dot. For instance, in 'blogger.com', '.com' is the top-level domain name (TLD). Clearly, '.com' signifies 'company', '.net' signifies 'network', '.org' signifies 'organization', and so on and so forth.
After you've picked your domain name and your future domain name registrar, you need to discover whether the domain name you would like to register is available for registration, since someone else might have seized it before you, however annoying it might be. Each domain name registration supplier, including Lonex, has a search tool at their sign-up page, which verifies the availability of a certain domain. To move on with the registration of a domain name, you need to fill in certain domain registrant information - the personal name, the place of residence, the e-mail address and the telephone number of the registrant of the domain.
You've Registered a Domain Name... Now What?
I registered .com, .net, .org and .eu domains for our project, as per the desire of my still-uncertain-about-the-function-of-the-future-website boss. I tested the domain name administration interface Lonex is offering and found it extremely easy to use - everything is logically structured and, from what I saw in the hosting Control Panel demo at their site, after we upgrade to a VPS hosting plan, it will stay the same, just with a lot more features. This, thank goodness, will spare me quite a lot of inconvenience from having to administer my domain and website hosting user account separately. So, while waiting for the boss to make a decision about at least what the web site should comprise, I was glad to discover that the domain name administration dashboard contains DNS management and domain renewal options, and - a very handy functionality (!) - a parked domain template, which I used in order to create a "Coming Soon" page for our domains.
Country-Code Top-Level Domains
I was quite glad to discover that Lonex is offering numerous country-specific top-level domain names, because the project the website is meant for is multinational. Country-specific Top-Level Domains are handed over to domestic registries, which allow domain registrars to register domains, usually at prices that are lower than those offered to the end customers. There are various country-specific top-level domain names: .co.uk for the United Kingdom, .me for Montenegro, .es for Spain, .us for the United States, .ca for Canada, .com.au for Australia, and so on. This, I believe, will make my boss happy because we will be able to build a local version of the web site for each country where the project will be introduced.