The Domain Name System: How It Works

The Domain Name System (DNS) is the backbone of the Internet. Without it, you wouldn’t be able to access websites or send email unless you memorized IP addresses. It’s kind of like a phone book for the Internet: it translates domain names into IP addresses so that networked devices can understand each other. In this article, we’ll explain how DNS works and why it’s important for understanding how the world wide web works.

What is the Domain Name System (DNS)?

The Domain Name System (DNS) is a hierarchical distributed naming system for computers, services and other resources connected to the Internet or a private network. The domain name system translates human-friendly computer hostnames into IP addresses. In order to achieve this, it must maintain data about that mapping. This data is stored in a set of interrelated databases called zones.

The Domain Name System was created in 1983 by Paul Mockapetris, who also designed BIND (Berkeley Internet Name Domain).

How does the Domain Name System (DNS) work?

The Domain Name System (DNS) is the backbone of the Internet. It’s what translates domain names into IP addresses, and vice versa. In other words, it’s how you get to websites like this one: you type in a URL or click on a link, which causes your computer to request information from one or more DNS servers that can help translate that hostname into an IP address (like “”).

The main purpose of DNS servers is to resolve domain names into IP addresses so that any given piece of information stored on multiple computers throughout the world can be accessed without having to remember which computer has what data stored on it (and without having all those different pieces of data stored in one place).

How are domain names registered?

The Domain Name …