Telluride Websmith

What is the Difference Between Domains, Hosting and a Website?

There are three basic components that make up any current-day web site:

   1. The domain name (ie, www.yourdomain.com)
   2. The web-hosting, or "server" (often includes email services)
   3. The website files themselves

Domains:
The domain name is much like an entry in a phone book. Computers communicate by using numbers, called IP addresses, to contact each other, much like you use a phone number to dial a specific person's phone. If you want people to find your business's phone number, you want to be listed in a phone book. The phone book tells people looking for your phone number “Company A's Phone number is xxx-xxx-xxxx” just as a domain tells people (i.e. their computers) “www.yourdomain.com is hosted on the server xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx” Without the domain, you would have to tell your customers “Hey my site is located at 123.456.789.123/~mysite/” instead of simply “mysite.com” You can see how, without a domain, having a site or hosting is impractical. Telluride Websmitih is a registered reseller for many of the most popular domain registrars, including Network Solutins, GoDaddy, Register.com and others. We handle the renewal of your domain for you and send you an invoice. This service is separate of our website hosting services.

Website & Email Hosting:
The web-hosting or server portion is much like the space that you rent for your business' office or retail location. It's merely the space itself. It does not include furnishings like shelves for your products, just as the web-hosting account doesn't include a site for you to sell your products. Luckily, in the web-hosting world, it's very easy to furnish the space provided by your hosting company, because we can install many framework applications to meet the needs of your website. Without the hosting services, you won't have a place for your website files to reside, so your domain would then become like a disconnected phone number in the phone directory, and your website files would have nowhere to live. Telluride Websmith provides various levels of website hosting and email services. View our Website Hosting page for more information.

Website Files:
The website files are what your visitors and potential customers actually see - your products and services. The website files are the same as any other file you normally use, like a .jpg photograph, or .mp3 music file. Though, website files are also .asp, .php files or .html files, which are scripts or html pages respectively. The web host (server) knows how to read these files, which explain how the website looks or instruct it to do a series of computations. These computations are things like figuring out what blog article it's supposed to send back to the viewer, or what forum post it's supposed to send back or to allow your visitors to make a reservation or registration online through your website.

In summary, you have a website visitor, who goes to your domain name, which translates into your server IP address, then the server sends that user your website files, which their browser represents to them as a typical “web-page.” You can see that, without each of these 3 key elements, you won't really have a “web-site.”

You must renew hour domain and hosting services annually (or for longer terms - which often saves you money) - Otherwise, your website will not be available for people to view. If you let your domain expire, you will incur additional charges, or worse case, lose your domain to another company (once a domain expires, after 30 days (if not renewed). it goes up for sale for anyone to purchase).