top-level domain

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top-level domain

The last and most significant component of an Internet fully qualified domain name, the part after the last ".". For example, host is in top-level domain "uk" (for United Kingdom).

Every other country has its own top-level domain, including ".us" for the U.S.A. Within the .us domain, there are subdomains for the fifty states, each generally with a name identical to the state's postal abbreviation. These are rarely used however. Within the .uk domain, there is a subdomain for academic sites and a domain for commercial ones. Other top-level domains may be divided up in similar ways.

In the US and some other countries, the following top-level domains are used much more widely than the country code:

.com - commercial bodies .edu - educational institutions .gov - U. S. government .mil - U. S. armed services .net - network operators .org - other organisations

Since the rapid commercialisation of the Internet in the 1990s the ".com" domain has become particularly heavily populated with every company trying to register its company name as a subdomain of .com, e.g. "" so as to make it easy for customers to guess or remember the URL of the comany's home page.

United Nations entities use the domain names of the countries where they are located. The UN headquarters facility in New York City, for example, is

Several new top-level domains are about to be added (Oct 1997): .nom - individual people .rec - recreational organisations .firm - businesses such as law, accounting, engineering .store - commercial retail companies .ent - entertainment facilities and organisations
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Internet domain name

An Internet domain name is a unique name of an organization or person on the Internet. The name is combined with a generic top-level domain (gTLD), such as .com or .org. For example, is the domain name for the publisher of this encyclopedia. By 2019, there were more than 300 million registered domain names.

Under ICANN's "New gTLD" program, communities, industries and organizations can create their own top-level domain names (see New gTLD).

Registration Is Required
In order for a domain name to be visible on the Internet, it must first be registered with any one of hundreds of registrars, which will verify that the name is absolutely unique. See registrar.

Dub-Dub-Dub or Whatever
In order to access The Computer Language Company website, is typed into the browser's address bar (see URL). The WWW, often verbalized as "dub-dub-dub," is a mnemonic commonly used for the hostname of a company's Web server. However, WWW is only a recommendation, and Web servers can be assigned any hostname. In addition, most companies configure their Web servers to not require a hostname. For example, without the WWW is sufficient. See hostname and DNS.

Different mnemonics are also widely used to identify sections of a site; for example, could be a valid address, in which case the word SUPPORT could not be omitted when typing the name.

Generic Top-Level Domains

In 1985, the following generic top-level domains (gTLDs) were created.
Unrestricted   commercial
 .net   network oriented
 .org   non-profit organization

  Restricted   accredited U.S. educational
 .gov   U.S. government agencies
 .mil   U.S. military
 .int   international treaties (1988)

More Domain Names
Starting in 2000, ICANN added more domains. Sponsored domains means that their use is reserved for a particular community, or registration is restricted to a certain type of applicant (see sTLD).

Sponsored Top-Level DomainssTLD    global aviation community
 .asia    Pan-Asia/Asia Pacific region
 .cat     Catalan community
 .coop    cooperatives
 .jobs    human resources/employment
 .mobi    mobile products/services
 .museum  museums
 .post    postal sector
 .pro     licensed professionals
 .tel     contacts (see  .tel)
 .travel  travel industry
 .xxx     X-rated

  Unsponsored Top-Level     businesses
 .info    information service
 .name    individuals

Countries Also Have Domain Names
Every country has a top-level domain; for example, .ca for Canada and .fr for France. The U.S. country code is .us, but it is not widely used. See country code, New gTLD, ICANN, IP address and FQDN.


(Top-Level Domain) The highest-level in the Internet domain naming system. Officially called a "generic top-level domain" (gTLD), it is also known as a "domain suffix" or "domain extension," because the designation is added to the end of the domain name. For example, .com is the gTLD in For details, see Internet domain name.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Abu Dhabi: The Abu Dhabi Smart Solutions and Services Authority (ADSSSA) on Saturday announced the launch of the Abu Dhabi internet domain suffix -- .abudhabi -- in both English and Arabic to represent the emirate's digital identity in the virtual world.
ICANN has allocated .London domain suffix recently, when asked whether .Dubai and .Abu Dhabi suffix will happen soon, he said there are applications for these but I am not sure where they are in the pipeline.
Bulgaria may apply once again for receiving the ".[ETH][+ or -][ETH][sup.3]" Internet domain suffix for which it was snubbed on several occasions by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).
have been assigned a two-letter domain suffix by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, which is loosely affiliated with the United Nations.
The Uttoxeter-based company, established by Paul and three fellow entrepreneurs, supplies personal e-mail addresses for family members using the domain suffix.
Because, it seems, there are moves to create a new domain suffix, purely for Scots and called .sc, a much more attractive proposition for those companies wanting a Scottish Net identity.
Summary: Abu Dhabi's Smart Solutions and Services Authority, ADSSSA, announced the launch of the Abu Dhabi Internet domain suffixes (.abudhabi), and (.UuU aeU[sup.1]U ae) for Arabic to represent the Emirate's digital identity in the virtual world.
Domain suffixes such as dot PH make for more specific user-targeted search results, helping Google provide better service to its millions of users.
Generic top-level domains, however, include unrestricted domain suffixes like .com, .net, .org, and .info.
Considerable thought also needs to be provided to brand derivatives such as social media tags and domain suffixes for the brand name and even catchphrases associated to the brand.
With reportedly 1,000 new, top-level domain suffixes to be added to the current and rather limited list of around 30, the chances of a conflict will grow exponentially.
A new batch will debut on February 5 with domain suffixes camera, equipment, estate, gallery, graphics, lighting, and photography, the company said in a release.

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