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Domain Name System (DNS): Simplifying Web Address Resolution

Definition

The Domain Name System (DNS) is a system that simplifies the process of translating web addresses, also known as URLs, into the numerical IP addresses that computers use to communicate with each other. It acts like a phone book for the internet, matching the easy-to-remember web addresses we type into our browsers with the unique IP addresses of the servers hosting the websites we want to visit. Without DNS, we would have to remember and type in long strings of numbers for every website we want to access.

Importance

The DNS is an essential part of the internet infrastructure because it makes it much easier for people to access websites. Instead of having to remember and type in complicated IP addresses, we can simply type in the easy-to-remember web addresses. This simplification has made the internet more user-friendly and accessible to people of all ages and technical abilities. The DNS also allows websites to change their IP addresses without affecting users, as the DNS automatically updates the IP address associated with a web address.

Sample Usage

When you type a web address like www.example.com into your browser, the DNS system goes to work behind the scenes. It first checks if it already knows the IP address associated with that web address. If it does, it sends that IP address back to your computer, which then connects to the server hosting the website. If the DNS system doesn't know the IP address, it starts a process called DNS resolution. It contacts other DNS servers to find the correct IP address and then sends it back to your computer, allowing you to access the website.

Related Terms

There are a few related terms that are helpful to understand when learning about DNS. IP address stands for Internet Protocol address and is a unique numerical identifier assigned to each device connected to a network. URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator and is the address used to access resources on the internet, such as websites. DNS server refers to a computer or network device that stores the IP addresses and other information related to domain names. Finally, DNS resolution is the process of finding the IP address associated with a given web address.

Domain Name System (DNS)

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