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Thread: www......http: ????

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2001

    www......http: ????

    Hello guys!!!
    Basically i am newbie to all this, i have a question and i wonder if someone of you can help me.

    most of the time we type www.<site name> in the browser for opening up the site, but at times we type http:<site name>, like for one of my Uni sites.

    Please can anyone tell me why is this, why is www. used or why is http: used???

    U get What U pay for.

  2. #2
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    United Kingdom: Bridlington
    As I understand it, the full address would be http://www.<site name> That tells you it is a World Wide Web site and it is using Hypertext Transfer Protocol. I think that your browser assumes this and fills in the missing bit, because I have just tried both on AO and it takes me to the site, having completed the address box in full, in the navigation bar.

    I suspect that if it is a private/internal site, it is just http://?

    Other possibilities that spring to mind are ftp:// which is File Transfer Protocol, and the addition of an "s" (https:// etc) which indicates a secure site.

    I am sorry that I am no expert, my comments are just based on my casual observations

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004

    I think, we have to deal with two separate issues here

    1. The protocol

    As nihil pointed out, the text before the :// refers to some protocol and/or
    tells the browser what to do:
    Like (sorry for paraphrasing):
    http: check on the following address port 80
    https: check on the following address port 443
    ftp: check on the following address port 21
    file: check on the localmachine for the file ...

    2. the address
    (apart from file://)
    The text after ://...

    The whole thing that follows, like www.google.com or google.com, points to an address.
    The IP address is different (test it using ping), but both sites will return the google
    search engine mask on port 80.

    The subdomain-IP (subdomain.domain.com) addresses are part of the DNS entry on the DNS server managing
    your domain (simply spoken).

    You can also forward all subdomain-IP's to one and the same IP.
    There, using http1.1, you can configure a web-server (eg apache)
    send different "homepages" according to that address ("virtual hosting").
    will point to another directory than

    And, as nihil already said (sorry for repeating again )
    nowadays, the browsers interpret what you have typed to the most
    probable choice. like
    google -> http://www.google.com

    www is a standard for a website.
    other standards are/were/would be

    ftp.google.com -> would resolve to the ftp server
    mail.google.com -> would resolve to the mail server

    If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.
    (Abraham Maslow, Psychologist, 1908-70)

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