What are nameservers?

Domain NameWhen you set up a domain name and web hosting, you may be asked at some point to change the nameservers. This terminology throws many people for a loop and scares them into thinking they can’t make that change and need to hire someone. Don’t be alarmed!

A nameserver is the same as DNS, AKA the Domain Name System. Here’s how it works. You have a domain name for your website. Mine is sumydesigns.com. You also have web hosting for your website, which is where you store all your website files. But you have to connect the two so that when someone types in your domain name, they see your files. Easy enough right? To make that happen, you have to point the DNS for your domain name to the place where your files are.

Computers and devices all work on a system that uses IP addresses to route you to the place you are trying to find. However, if we all had to look up websites by IP number, it would get awfully confusing to find anyone. Imagine if instead of going to mydomain.com, you had to type in 111.222.124.185 every time? Yeah, that would get old fast! So instead we use domain names, that are then associated with an IP address via your DNS. The nameserver is the translator between your domain name and your IP.

When you type your domain name into your web browser, the computer has to figure out that mydomain.com is the same as 111.222.124.185. The DNS (nameservers) are what tells the computer that information.

Need help setting up your website, hosting, or managing your DNS? We can do it! Contact us today for help.

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Amy Masson

Amy is the co-owner, developer, and website strategist for Sumy Designs. She's been making websites with WordPress since 2006 and is passionate about making sure websites are as functional as they are beautiful.

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