Domain Names – A Look Back to History and Their Evolution

The domain names find their significance when it comes to identifying more than one IP addresses and are used in the URLs for the identification of web pages. For example, if you have a career placement site, then you would likely want to choose from the many  jobs domains, so that yours will be unique to your product or service so that clients can find you. The creation of the domain name system and the domain name servers (DNS) can be traced back to 1984.

When Wide Area Networks (WAN) were used to connect several computers, like ARPANET in the 60’s, there arose the need for identification to access different systems. With an increase in the number of connections, an effective system for the maintenance and regulation of domain paths all over the network was needed. In 1973 the Internet Protocol (IP) addressing system came into the existence so that various networking computers could be located easily. The newsgroups and the electronic mail (e-mail) gradually came into existence by the 70’s.A stable and easy-to-remember system was demanded with the growth in the number of users. The demand was for a system which was better than the IP system containing long and complex strings of numbers. The University of Wisconsin, in 1984, prepared a ‘name server’, the first of its kind. This made sure that the users, networking with several others, need not remember the detailed path to any other system. This led to the birth of the present-day addressing system. The implementation of the Domain Name System(DNS) took place a year after. Further, the ‘.com’, ‘.net’, ‘org’, etc. were introduced and were known as the top-level domain names. Thus one could expect a sudden change like ‘’ getting converted to ‘’.World Wide Web originated in 1991, shaped the public domain to exist by the domain registration. At first, the domain registration was free. But by 1992, due to the exponential increase in internet usage, Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) and National Science Foundation (NSF) created the ‘InterNIC’ to maintain and organize the growth of DNS services and registry. Gradually NFS stopped subsidizing domain registrations by 1995. InterNIC initially started to impose $100 as a fee for registration for 2 years. In 1998 the U.S. Department of Commerce published a document, called White Paper, outlining the transfer of domain name management systems to private organizations. Today domain registration is much cheaper at around $8.00 per year.ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) now accredits many companies to make an addition to the global domain name database called the Shared Registration System. Presently, there are more than 19 million registered domain names and 40,000 get registered every day.

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