- What is Web Hosting and Domain Naming?
- Is a Domain Name absolutely necessary?
- What are the main difference between Static Web pages and Dynamic We pages?
- Is my website static or dynamic?
- What free solution should I pick to host my website?
For the purpose of this article, we will use the following definitions of web hosting and domain naming as follows:
Consists in hosting and keeping files and data for websites, in machines called servers, that give away part of they available disk space to maintain the data. Web servers also provide internet access, which can be payed separately.
A name owned by a person or a company, made of a string composed by letters, number and special characters, used as an internet address that identifies the location of specific webpages.
So, now that we have these two aspects defined let’s see how they play together. A Web Hosting service, will give you a machine with a connection to the internet, where you can put your website’s data. Because the machine is connected to the internet, everyone can access it’s contents by using the machine’s IP address. However, IP numbers are long sequences, and are also very hard for people to memorize. To fix this problem, the Domain Name System was created. Shortly put, this system maps IP numbers, to website names that you can memorize.
So, now that you know that Web Host service will give you a computer (server) to store data, and a Domain Name service will map the server’s IP address into a name that people can memorize, it is time to understand what your web site needs.
To know what your website needs, you must know the type of your website. Websites are made of Web Pages, and there are two main types of these:
With this information we can then make the following statement: If a Website contains one or more Dynamic Web pages, it is a dynamic website, otherwise it is a Static Website.
Overall, Static Websites are easier to create, and are ideal for beginners. Dynamic websites, require more knowledge and are harder to create, but they are a lot easier to maintain then static websites due to all the automation they have.
The list of advantages and disadvantages between static and dynamic websites goes longer, but these are the basics you need to know.
So, now that you probably know the type of website you are building, it’s time to evaluate the market that exists. The important thing here is the type of Web hosting service that you will need. Some web hosts only allow for static web sites, while others also allow for dynamic.
Domain Name services are independent of your web host, however, sometimes the web host company also provides an integrated web naming service that you can use.
Free Web Hosting for Static Websites:
Free Web Hosting for Dynamic Websites:
All these web hosts will make your webpage available online for everyone for free, however they will create very long and horrible links for your websites. This is where Domain Naming comes in.
Free Domain Naming services:
Using Custom Domain with Google Drive:
- How to Use a Custom Domain on Google Drive Hosted Website
- How to host a website in Google Drive with Custom Domain
Using a Custom Domain with Dropbox:
- 2 Ways to Use a Custom Domain with Dropbox
- Host Websites With Dropbox
- Using a custom domain for your Dropbox public files URLs
An alternative to choosing a domain and a name for your website is also URL shortening:
Free URL shorteners services:
For more information about this section, please visit the Sources Section.
By now you should be able to answer the formulated questions presented in the introduction. Web hosts provide servers that can hold your data and are connected to the internet. Domain Names are pretty much “masks” that map IP addresses and other horrible long names into string that people can actually memorize. URL shorteners can therefore be seen as a sort of Domain Naming service, provided of course that you can actually memorize the URL they give you.
Last but not least, the more complex your website is, the more complete the service you rent must be. Dynamic websites many times require complex online platforms such as Heroku or Google Apps to be deployed, and there are many others out there depending on the language set you use.
Web hosting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_hosting_service
Web hosting: http://www.w3schools.com/hosting/default.asp
Domain Name: http://www.techterms.com/definition/domain_name
Domain Name: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/domain+name
IP address: http://www.techterms.com/definition/ipaddress
Domain Name System: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domain_Name_System
Static Web Page: http://www.techterms.com/definition/staticwebsite
Static Web Page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Static_web_page
Dynamic Web Page: http://www.techterms.com/definition/dynamicwebsite
Dynamic Web Page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_web_page
Static website’s advantages, disadvantages and examples: http://nellen.co.za/static-websites
Dynamic vs Static Websites, what’s the difference?: http://www.edinteractive.co.uk/article/?id=4
Dropbox free web Hosting: http://www.groovypost.com/howto/host-simple-website-dropbox-free-hosting/
Best free Domain Naming services: http://www.prchecker.info/web-hosting/best-free-domain-name-services/
How to Host a Website on Google Drive : http://www.codeitpretty.com/2013/03/how-to-host-website-on-google-drive.html
Extra URL shortners: http://www.webdevelopersnotes.com/resources/shorten-url.php
- Wafflegnome, for starting the guide, and letting me finish and update it later (Pedro Martins)
- Johnny Higgins, for suggesting links
- kao-tica, for suggesting links
Hope that helps.