A domain name is an identification string that defines a realm of administrative autonomy, authority or control within the internet. Domain names are formed by the rules and procedures of the Doman name system (DNS). Any name registered in the DNS is a domain name. Domain names are used in various networking contexts and application-specific naming and addressing purposes. In general, a domain name represents an Internet Protocol(IP) resource, such as a personal computer used to access the Internet, a server computer hosting a web site, or the web site itself or any other service communicated via the Internet. In 2015, 294 million domain names had been registered.
Domain names are organized in subordinate levels (subdomains) of the DNS root domain, which is nameless. The first-level set of domain names are thetop level domain (TLDs), including the Generic top level domains (gTLDs), such as the prominent domains com, info, net, edu and org, and the country top level domains(ccTLDs). Below these top-level domains in the DNS hierarchy are the second-level and third-level domain names that are typically open for reservation by end-users who wish to connect local area networks to the Internet, create other publicly accessible Internet resources or run web sites.
The registration of these domain names is usually administered by domain name registers who sell their services to the public.
Afully qualified domain name (FQDN) is a domain name that is completely specified with all labels in the hierarchy of the DNS, having no parts omitted. Labels in the Domain Name System are case insensitive, and may therefore be written in any desired capitalization method, but most commonly domain names are written in lowercase in technical contexts.