F.A.Q. Your Questions Answered.

On this page your clients will find answers to frequently asked questions. 

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General Questions
General Questions
What is an IP address?

An IP address is a unique number that serves two purposes:

  1. It identifies your computer.
  2. It provides information about where your computer is located.

You can think of an IP address as the digital equivalent of a physical address for your house or a P.O. Box for your mail. Every computer connected to the internet has an IP address.

More generally, each computer within a network is identified by an IP address. For example, if your computer is a part of your home network, it will be recognized on your network with an IP address. This IP address may not be the same as the one assigned when your computer joins the global network called the internet.

Example IP address:

What is a domain name?

A domain name is a human-readable address that uniquely identifies a computer.

Because computers don’t really recognize domain names, domain names have to be converted into IP addresses before they can be used by the computer. This conversion is done by a domain name server (or DNS server). This is essentially a massive database that maps domain names to IP addresses, a process called DNS name resolution.

Example domain name: nettoolkit.net

What is a computer name (or hostname)?

The computer name (sometimes referred to as the hostname) is a human-readable name assigned to a computer or server.

Computer names are optional since only the IP address is required to identify a computer, but such names are more accessible for people to use and remember.

Example hostname: mail.nettoolkit.net

What is the difference between the computer name (or hostname) and the domain name?
The hostname is the name of the computer, while the domain name is a registered name that identifies a computer. The two may be identical, but sometimes, they are not. For example, you might have an internal network that refers to a server as Computer A, but the publicly-available domain name is example.com (and, it goes without saying, this is the name you would have registered).
What is a Base-10 Number? What is a Base-256 number?

First things first:

  • A Base-10 number looks like this: 156
  • A Base-256 number looks like this:

You can convert a Base-10 number to a Base-256 number (and vice versa). For example, this website can be reached using any of the following:

What is Email Validation?

n short, email validation is the process by which you check to see if a specific email address is capable of receiving email or not. Email validation is essential especially for those who maintain mailing lists and send out emails to a large number of people.

One identifying feature of spammers is that they send out mass amounts of email, with a large number of those getting marked as undeliverable. There are many reasons for this, including the possibility that many of the addresses are made up — the hope is probably that, by making a sufficient number of guesses, they will land in some valid inboxes.

As you can see, one of the distinctions between valid marketing and spamming is the validity of their email lists — the former is likely to see fewer messages fail to go through. In addition to just making sure that their means of collecting addresses weeds out incorrect options, email validation offers additional protection against email handlers (such as Gmail) marking their messages as spam.

What are HTTP Headers?

HTTP headers are a way for a client (such as your web browser) to pass information to the server (or vice versa). Either party sends these headers with requests and responses (if you’re unfamiliar with HTTP, a request might be the web browser asking for a website, while the response might be the files needed to render the website. There are other types of requests and responses, but this is the one most people are familiar with).

HTTP headers can be used to send the appropriate credentials needed to access something, indicate that something should be cached for faster retrieval from the server, and so on.

What is URL Encoding?

There are two ways a web browser might display a URL: standard or encoded.

You’re probably familiar with standard URLs. They’re easily read by human eyes (i.e., www.example.com). However, if there are special characters that need to be included in the URL, they need to be encoded.

For example, some websites transmit search data in the URL (such as when you search a site for something). If your search query becomes a part of the URL, and your search query includes a space, it will need to be encoded. To do this, your browser, using the ASCII key set, replaces the space with %20 (e.g., example.com/search=t%20shirt).

What is a DNS Record?

As we mentioned above, DNS stands for Domain Name System, and it is the database system used to find the IP address associated with a provided domain name. The database file used to link a domain name to its IP addresses is called the DNS record.

There are several different types of DNS records, each handling a specific task. For example, address (A) records are the ones mapping a hostname to an IP address, mail exchange (MX) records help emails get sent to the right mail servers on a given domain, and canonical name (CNAME) records allow you to add aliases for your hostname.

What is a DNS Server?
A DNS server is the server that contains the database of IP addresses and the hostnames (or computer names) with which they are associated.
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