Why Do You Need a Domain Name?
This is a topic I broach because one week ago my boss brought forth the idea of setting up a web page for our new project. That itself is not a problem, the problem is that he wants a website, but has not decided yet what it should look like, what it should include, etc. All that he revealed to me was the name of the site - its domain name. Thus, we now have a web address for a yet-to-be-created website and nothing else.
The Domain Name
Each website is located on a physical machine. That physical machine has its own personal physical address, popular also as an IP address. Paying a visit to a web site by writing the IP address of the physical server in your browser, however, is not the best and most suitable thing to do, so that was how and why domain names came into being. Therefore, a domain name corresponds to an IP address on the World Wide Web. After it has been registered, of course.
Registering a Domain
To register a domain, you first have to choose a domain registrar. ResellersPanel Hosting has an optimal solution for my present and future projects - they have a Domain Manager plan, which can be effortlessly upgraded to a web hosting package later on - when my boss finally makes a decision about what function the site will serve.
Thus, to register a domain name, you have to pick a name for your website. Then, you need to choose a TLD - this is what follows the dot. For example, in 'visa.com', '.com' is the top-level domain name (TLD). Clearly, '.com' signifies 'company', '.net' signifies 'network', '.org' signifies 'organization', and so on.
After you've selected your domain and your future domain name registration provider, you have to discover whether the domain you would like to register is available for registration, because somebody else might have registered it before you, no matter how unpleasant this might be. Each domain registrar company, including ResellersPanel Hosting, has a search functionality at their sign-up page, which verifies the availability of a specific domain name. To move on with the registration of a domain, you have to fill in certain registrant info - the personal name, the physical address, the electronic mail address and the telephone number of the registrant of the domain name.
You've Registered a Domain... Now What?
I registered .com, .net, .org and .biz domains for our venture, as per the request of my still-unsure-about-the-function-of-the-future-site boss. I tried out the domain administration tool ResellersPanel Hosting is offering and found it extremely useful - everything is neatly ordered and, from what I saw in the Control Panel demo at their web site, once we upgrade to a VPS web hosting plan, it will remain the same, but with a lot more functionalities. This, thank God, will save me quite a lot of inconvenience from having to administer my domain and hosting user account separately. So, while waiting for the boss to decide at least what the site should contain, I was glad to find that the domain management interface includes DNS management and domain renewal options, and - a very useful functionality (!) - a parked domain template, which I resorted to in order to set up a "Coming Soon" page for our domains.
I was pretty glad to see that ResellersPanel Hosting is offering a lot of country-code Top-Level Domains, as the project the site is intended for is multinational. Country-specific top-level domain names are handed over to national registry operators, which enable registrars to register domain names, usually at rates that are cheaper than those offered to the end customers. There are many country-code domain names: .co.uk for the United Kingdom, .me for Montenegro, .de for Germany, .us for the USA, .ca for Canada, .com.au for Australia, and so on. This, I suppose, will make my boss happy because we will be able to build a local version of the website for each country where the project will be presented.