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Domain FAQ
  1. What is a domain name?
  2. What does it mean to 'register a domain name'?
  3. Who should register a domain name?
  4. Should I get a .CA, a .Com, a .Net, or a .Org domain name? And should I get just one?
  5. Are there any other fees I need to be aware of?
  6. I registered my domain but it doesn't show up in the Whois. Why?
  7. What are Name Servers and why do I need them?
  8. Where can I edit my information on-line?
  9. What is a Registrar?
  10. What will be the Registrar's role?
  11. Whose responsibility is it to manage the relationship with Registrants?
  12. What is a Registrant?
  13. How many Domain Names can an organization or individual register?
  14. Can anything be registered as a Domain Name?
  15. What is the dispute resolution process?
  16. What is CIRA?
  17. What is a top-level domain?
  18. How does .ca differ from .COM?
  19. Why is it necessary to register a domain?
  20. How can I determine whether the domain name is still available?
  21. Do I have to have a web site to register a domain?
  22. What is an Administrative Contact?
  23. What is a Billing Contact?
  24. What is a Technical Contact?

  1. What is a domain name?
    Every computer connected to the Internet has an address, called an 'IP address'. An example of an IP address is 216.220.38.194. A domain name is the name of the IP address for a computer. You use a domain name because it is much easier to remember than the IP address. For example, www.aloak.ca is a domain name, used to access the computer that has Aloak's web site. Instead of having to remember that 216.220.38.194 is the address of this computer, you use www.aloak.ca instead.

    Domain names are also used to identify companies and individuals. It is not uncommon to use corporate names, trade marks or personal names in a domain name. That is why Aloak uses domain names like 'www.aloak.ca' or 'www.aloak.com'.

    Domain names serve as a convenient way of locating information and people on the Internet.

  2. What does it mean to 'register a domain name'?
    There is a central registry of all domain names on the Internet. For you or your company to use one, the domain name needs to be registered in that registry. 'Registering a domain name' means you are associated with that domain name for the period of the registration.

  3. Who should register a domain name?
    Anyone trying to establish a presence on the Internet should register a domain name. Domain names can be brand names, trademarks, service marks, company names, products, services, family names, your name, organizations, interests, etc.

  4. Should I get a .CA, a .Com, a .Net, or a .Org domain name? And should I get just one?
    You should pick a domain name you are comfortable with as your online identity. Whether it is .com, .net, .org or .ca, they all work equally well. It is not uncommon for businesses to register multiple names and variations of desired names (brand names, trademarks, service marks, etc.).

  5. Are there any other fees I need to be aware of?
    No. The domain name registration fee includes the registry cost that traditionally would have come separately in the mail. This way, you do not need to worry about other costs or fees for domain name registration. One registrar - one cost.

  6. I registered my domain but it doesn't show up in the Whois. Why?
    It normally takes 24 - 48 hours to have your domain working worldwide if your nameservers (DNS) have been setup properly.

  7. What are Name Servers and why do I need them?
    In order for your domain name to be used on the Internet it is necessary to provide 'name service' for the domain name. Name service is what takes your domain name and translates it into an IP address, because the computers on the Internet communicate using IP addresses, not domain names. To set up name service, you must specify 'Name Servers' for your domain. Name Servers are the computers that provide name service. You can specify both the domain names and the IP addresses for the computers that provide name service for your domain name (at a mimimum, you must specify two name servers).

  8. Where can I edit my information on-line?
    You can submit information change requests for your domain information online here.

    As a security precaution, all requests to change domain name information must be approved by the Administrative Contact for your Domain Name. Aloak will send an email to The Administrative Contact for your Domain Name, outlining the requested changes. The Administrative Contact must reply to this email, as instructed, in order for your requests to be processed.

  9. What is a Registrar?
    A Registrar is an individual or entity that is certified or otherwise authorized to register domain names and provide other related services (such as transfers, renewals, contact changes, etc) on behalf of anyone who wants to register domain names or administer domains names they have registered.

  10. What will be the Registrar's role?
    Registrars will act as the interface between the public, Applicants and Registrants on the one hand, and the Registry on the other. They will apply on behalf of Applicants to register Domain Names in the Registry, provide registration renewal, transfer and information update services for Registrants.

  11. Whose responsibility is it to manage the relationship with Registrants?
    In accordance with CIRA's Minimum Services Guidelines, available in the Certification and Re-certification Requirements at http://www.cira.ca/en/docs_regis.html, and other policies in effect regulating Registrars, Registrars will be responsible for providing all customer service, billing and technical support and other necessary services to Registrants, including advising the Registrants of the status of such services from time to time, in order to enable Registrants to register Domain Names and to renew, maintain, modify or transfer Domain Name registrations in the Registry.

  12. What is a Registrant?
    A Registrant is the person in whose name a Domain Name is registered.

  13. How many Domain Names can an organization or individual register?
    Any qualifying individual or organization will be able to register an unlimited number of Domain Names. With respect to .ca domain names, the rules for regarding Domain Name Registrations are posted at CIRA.

  14. Can anything be registered as a Domain Name?
    No. Applications for the registration of Domain Names will be considered and either accepted or rejected in accordance with the rules developed by Registration Authorities (CIRA, ICANN, etc) . The rules for .ca registrations are posted at CIRA.

  15. What is the dispute resolution process?
    Registration Authorities make available dispute resolution policies and procedures in order to to address disputes between Domain Name Registrants as well as between Domain Name Registrants and those who claim trademarks and related rights. The dispute resolution process will take into account the interests of Domain Name and trademark owners, as well as intellectual property laws. The policy relating to .ca domain names is available from CIRA in its Official Documents section. The ICANN policy is available here.

  16. What is CIRA?
    CIRA is the Canadian Internet Registration Authority. It is a not-for-profit organization mandated to operate the .ca top-level domain.

  17. What is a top-level domain?
    A top-level domain is used to designate the type of organization or the country of origin. Generic top level designators are commonly three letter suffixes like .com, .net, .org, .edu. Country code top level domains are commonly two letter suffixes like .ca, .us, .uk, etc., as assigned by the United Nations.

  18. How does .ca differ from .COM?
    .ca is the country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD) designating Canada. .com is the generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) designating Commercial organizations. The policies and administration of the .ca Domain Name are set by CIRA and governed by Canadian law. The gTLDs are managed in the United States under American law.

  19. Why is it necessary to register a domain?
    It is absolutely NOT necessary to register a domain, however a unique domain which could contain your company name, will help people to better find you on the Internet.

  20. How can I determine whether the domain name is still available? Visit the Aloak home page and enter your domain name in the 'Check Domain Availability' input box. Click 'GO' to check availability.

  21. Do I have to have a web site to register a domain?
    No, it is absolutely not necessary to have a web site ready if you want to register a domain.

  22. What is an Administrative Contact?
    The Administrative Contact is the person or organization authorized by the domain name Registrant to act on behalf of the legal entity listed as the owner of the domain name. The Administrative Contact should be able to answer non-technical questions about the legal entity's plans for using the domain name and the procedures for establishing sub-domains.

  23. What is a Billing Contact?
    The Billing Contact is one of the contacts that must be set up when registering an Inter national Domain Name (.com, .net, .org, etc). Although it is necessary to set up this contact, it is never actually used for any purpose.

  24. What is a Technical Contact?
    The Technical Contact is the person or organization that maintains the domain name Registrant's primary name server and resolves software, and database files. The Technical Contact keeps the name server running and interacts with technical people in other domains to solve problems that affect the domain name. An Internet Service Provider often performs this role. If the Technical or Billing Contact information is missing from the Registration Agreement, it is presumed that the domain name Registrant has authorized the Administrative Contact/Agent to act as the Technical Contact.