The Domain Name System, or DNS, can be thought of as the internet directory. It is a way of cataloguing every domain that exists on the web. It may not look as if there is much organisation in the internet’s twisted web, but in reality, DNS is the foundation for every page you visit. While it may sound complicated, the basic concept of DNS is quite easy to grasp once you understand the vocabulary involved. To help you fully understand your website, domain name, and the terminology used, this post will walk through what DNS is and how it works to provide you with the page you are reading now.
Domain Names & IP Addresses
Internet users use domain names to access websites like google.com or uk2.net. These domains typically correlate closely to the website’s brand or function. Domains are unique, and one domain cannot represent more than one website.
Each domain name corresponds with an IP address. IP stands for Internet Protocol, and IP addresses are groups of numbers that are unique to that domain. Internet creators knew that we humble humans would struggle to remember 9 specific numbers to bring up a website. To save our numerically challenged brains, creators instead decided to link domain names and IP addresses as a more memorable alternative.
IP addresses come in two forms: IPv4 or IPv6. IPv4 is the original method for IP addresses and contains up to 9 unique numbers. An example of an IP address is Google at 126.96.36.199 or Bing at 188.8.131.52. However, as the internet expanded, users needed more IP addresses for the growing number of web location. IPv6 was created in the late 90s to accommodate the expanding internet and instead used alphanumeric to combine letters and numbers for more IP locations. For example, the IPv6 address for Google is 2001:4860:4860::8888.
How DNS works:
DNS includes the process that each domain name follows to convert into an IP address. For example, you most likely call the place you live “home”, but it also has a corresponding street address. A website has a “home”, like Google or UK2, and a corresponding IP, or internet, address. When you type a domain name into a search bar, a succession of very fast connections are used to look up and establish a connection to that website. This sequence of events is referred to as DNS.
The first stop along the way to a secure connection is through a nameserver. A nameserver handles queries or questions on the internet and retrieves the information you are searching for. For example, if you typed UK2.NET into your address bar, the nameserver would look through directories, find the corresponding website and direct your browser to it. This data transaction actually has four parts where your computer asks and the nameserver answers. Your computer then confirms, and the nameserver responds once more. Remember, this all happens at lightning speed as you wait for a page to load.
Setting up your DNS
While this process is fascinating, it only works because website owners register their domain name and IP address with a domain registrar. When you purchase a domain, you are required to provide specific information about your nameservers and domain. To learn more about this process, please visit our knowledgebase. The articles found in our knowledgebase walk you through the steps to establishing your domain in connection with a nameserver.
Registering a Domain with UK2.NET
To register your own domain name, simply visit UK2.NET and use our search tool to find the perfect domain for your next project. Once you have selected a domain, choose the time frame that you would like to as a registration and renewal period. Add the domain to your shopping cart. Click on the Checkout icon to begin the checkout process. During this process, you will need to enter an email address that you have access to in order to access your DNS and domain settings. Once your transaction is complete, you will receive and email with information on how to create a CHI account to view and edit domain options.
Please note that if you already have a CHI account, you can navigate to the Domains tab to search and register new domains.
Once you receive an email welcoming you to the CHI platform, you can create logins and log into your CHI account. To change DNS settings, select the Domains icon from the menu on the left-hand side of your screen. Next, click on the DNS tab at the top of your screen. Edit the DNS settings by entering the following into the form fields provided:
When you are finished, click the Save Changes button. For a more detailed account of DNS advanced settings, please see our Knowledgebase.
As always, our expert technical support staff is always available to help you through the domain registration and DNS process. Feel free to give us a call, open a chat or create a ticket within your CHI account.