What are domain extensions and what they are for (Topic)

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What are domain extensions and what they are for


Have you ever wondered how Internet navigation works in general? What happens when you enter the name of your site into your browser's address bar, and why can your favorite site be found not only by its name, but also by a unique numeric value? Today we will try to understand what domain names are and what they are for.

How they appeared

Until 1983 in order to visit a host (server) on the network, it was required to enter its IP address (the numerical value mentioned above). The new Internet was much smaller, and it was only possible to get to individual sites if you knew its direct numeric address.

Fortunately, a group of engineers have unveiled their groundbreaking Domain Name System (DNS), which allows numeric IP addresses to be identified as specific domain names (that is, as human-readable words or phrases).

Instead of memorizing long strings of numbers like69.171.234.21, you just need to memorizeURL:


With the new DNS, there is also such a thing asdomain extension. The domain extension is part of a generic top-level domain (gTLD), such

Most sites, which makes it easy to forget that at the time of their creation, each domain extension had a specific intended purpose.

For example, the same .com was intended only for commercial organizations

Nevertheless, even now there are top-level domains that are issued only to a certain type of company or organization, and it is simply impossible to obtain these domain gTLDs. For example:

.INT - International Organizations

.EDU - Educational (educational projects)

.GOV - US Government

.MIL - US Dept of Defense

First Top Level Domains

In 1984 Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) installed the first six domain, .edu, .gov, .mil, .org and .net.Shortly thereafter, the first two-digit country code domain extensions (eg .uk and .us) were created. In 1988,.int was also introduced.


After that, the Internet entered the life of society (not as a direct result of the introduction of gTLDs, but this is what made the Internet much easier and more convenient).

But this only happened after the Corporation for the Management of Domain Names and IP Addresses (ICANN) was created in 1998, thanks to which it became possible to apply for registration of any new domain names.

At that time, ICANN entered into an agreement with the United States Department of Commerce for the operation of the IANA. However, a number of countries have argued that the dominance of these organizations essentially created the de facto "leader" of the Internet from the United States.

Moreover, the US authorities have effectively accepted this accusation and, effective October 1, 2016, delegated powers to ICANN to the multistakeholder community of member countries.

Domain Extension Types

For a long time, only the aforementioned parent top-level domains (gTLDs) have existed.

In 2000, a choice of 7 new domains became possible:aero, .biz, .coop, .info, .museum, .name, and .pro.

ICANN added additional domain extensions from 2005 through 2007,, .jobs, .mobi, .tel, .travel and .asia.

This series of domains serves a specific community, whether geographic, ethnic, professional, technical, or any other.


Where did the Cyrillic alphabet come from

In 2008, the existing TLD system was changed. ICANN initiated a new domain name naming process to take a significant step forward in the implementation of new generic top-level domains.

This move has revolutionized the parental TLD system. Previously, only 22 gTLDs were available and registered domains had to use Latin characters (there are over 280 of them, including two-letter country codes). And suddenly, for people with enough money, it was possible to apply to use their own gTLD.

In addition, it became possible to use non-Latin characters in the domain name, such as Cyrillic, Arabic and Chinese.

Whereas previously applications were created and accepted by one ICANN organization, now companies themselves could apply for the gTLD they needed to match their brand policies. ICANN registration fees for gTLDs are currently $ 185,000.

Applying for a Domain Name with ICANN

However, before you get the idea to apply, you need to understand that not everyone can register their own gTLD. An application for a new gTLD can only come from an organization or company, and the process takes at least nine months.

If your application for a top-level domain is redirected to an additional assessment that requires arbitration, then you better ask yourself if I have an extra $ 50,000 lying around, because they will immediately appear in your invoice for the domain. All this fuss with a new URL will cost you a pretty penny.

Of course, $ 185,000 is not that much, especially for large corporations.


ICANN has received more than 1,900 applications since the opening of the gTLD application system in 2012 - with more than 750 of them competing between two or more companies. And, as you'd expect, big companies took the opportunity to protect their brand.

For example, Microsoft has registered the following domain names:

  • BING
  • DOCS
  • LIVE
  • XBOX

While Apple applied for only one domain, Amazon and Google requested 76 and 101 domain names, respectively.

Remember that the cost of a top-level domain is $ 185,000? But this is only on condition that there are no other applicants for the domain.

If there are competitors, you will have to participate in the auction. The company that offers the highest price wins.

For example, at a public auction hosted by ICANN, Amazon had to fork out over $ 4.5 million to acquire domain.Google wasted $ 25,000,001 on the.appdomain in the same auction.

Most expensive and funniest domain names

There are so many extremely expensive domains out there. We have compiled a small list of the funniest ones.

  • - $ 13,000,000 (2010),
  • - $ 9,999,950 (2008),
  • - $ 9,500,000 (2007)
  • - $ 8,000,000 (2014),
  • - $ 7,500,000 (2006),
  • - $ 5,100,000 (2009),
  • - $ 3,000,000 (2006),
  • - $ 2,100,000 (2007),
  • - $ 1,500,000 (2009),
  • - $ 1,350,000 (2013),
  • - $ 1,200,000 (2014).
  • for $ 7 million 2004;

Restricted Domains

All domain extensions can be limited or unlimited.

For example, only accredited educational institutions are eligible to register a domain with the

Many country code domain extensions are also limited and can only be registered by citizens or permanent residents of the country the extension applies to.

.aero, the domain name of which is moderated by the private air transport company, SITA, which limits the range of companies that can only register with air transport companies.

Unlimited domains

Conversely, unlimited domain extensions such, .organd.netcan be registered by anyone.

There are also some unlimited domain extensions, which has led to "domain hackers" who create a word using the domain, for example, uses the US country code .us to form the word “delicious”.

Domains and circus with horses

New domain extensions are added every day. Sometimes the names are completely absurd. As with most things in life, everything really depends only on how much money is behind the buyer. Therefore, names such, .sucks, .webcamand others have already appeared.


There is even, and Google's holding company Alphabet decided this domain name was ideal for them.

Also, it's no surprise that many new domain extensions are becoming filled with garbage and a haven of bots sending spam and other nasty things.

This is interesting

As with everything in our life, there have been many interesting, funny or even crazy stories with domain names during their existence.

It can't be longer - The longest name in the .COM zone belongs to a Welsh village. Now the site has nothing to do with it and is a parked domain for referral earnings.

Million dollar domain is a domain with a great history. This site was invented by 21-year-old Alex Tew, who did not have enough money to pursue higher education. On August 26, 2005, it started selling each pixel for $ 1 (minimum order 10x10 pixels). Buyers purchased space and posted images and links on this site with a kind of viral effect. The last pixel was sold on eBay for $ 38,100. The site's homepage is still alive and clickable (and even has ads from The Times).

Big oversight

On September 28, 2015, ex-Google employee Sanmai Veda used Google Domains and found that the address was free. Ved bought it for $ 12. The story from Sanmai himself can be read on his Linkedin. For those who are lazy, the end is this: Sanmai reported the incident to Google Security, an internal investigation began.

The Corporation offered a reward, but Sanmai declined and asked to donate the amount to the Art of Living India Foundation, which provides free comprehensive education for children from Indian slums. Google doubled the amount and donated it to the fund; in the interests of the company, the details of the results of the investigation and the amount of the remuneration were not disclosed.

Domain as domain

In 2015, the most expensive domain was, acquired back in February last year for $ 8,888,888.

How often do you notice a domain extension that you use anyway?

The Topic of Article: What are domain extensions and what they are for.
Author: Jake Pinkman