Web Hosting Glossary of Terms

A (Address) Record
Address records assign a hostname (e.g.: support.yourdomain.com) to a specific IP address

Refers to the database program "Microsoft Access", also called Jet Database.

ADSL- Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line
A technology that allows more data to be sent over existing copper telephone lines (POTS). ADSL supports data rates of from 1.5 to 9 Mbps when receiving data (known as the downstream rate) and from 16 to 640 Kbps when sending data (known as the upstream rate). ADSL requires a special ADSL modem. It is not currently available to the general public except in trial areas, but many believe that it will be one of the more popular choices for Internet access over the next few years.

An alias is an e-mail address that forwards its mail to a specified mailbox, masking the true name of the mailbox in which the mail is actually received. For example, Sales@yourdomain.com could be an alias for Joe1234@aol.com.

This word is often used to denote the opposite of digital. Loosely, it means the measuring of data on more physical grounds, as opposed to the more electronic or "wired" state of digital.

The means that allow a person to connect to an FTP site, search through available files, and download any file, document or program without having to establish a userID and/or password on the system where the material resides.

Anonymous FTP
An Internet File Transfer Protocol (FTP) option that allows you to let others onto your Web site to download files that you have made available, without first establishing an account. Most FTP servers are set up to allow a limited amount of anonymous FTP users to log in at the same time, and only provide access to designated files.

A popular Web server. By some estimates, it is used to host more than 50% of all Web sites in the world. The original version of Apache was written for UNIX, but there are now versions that run under OS/2, Windows and other platforms.

A mini-program that can be downloaded quickly and used by any computer equipped with a Java- or ActiveX-capable browser. Applets carry their own software players

ARPANET - Advanced Projects Agency Network
The precursor to the Internet. Developed in the late 60's and early 70's by the U.S. Department of Defense as an experiment in wide-area-networking that would survive a nuclear war.

ASP - Active Server Pages (Windows Only)
A specification for a dynamically created Web page with an .ASP extension that contain either Visual Basic or JScript code. When a browser requests an ASP page, the Web server generates a page with HTML code and sends it back to the browser. ASP pages are similar to CGI scripts, but they enable Visual Basic programmers to work with familiar tools. ASP is only available on NT servers.

An e-mail that is automatically sent in reply to any e-mail received in a specified mailbox. Also known as a vacation message.

The Internet's high-speed data highway that serves as a major access point to which other networks can connect.

1. The range of frequencies a transmission line or channel can carry; the higher the frequency the higher the bandwidth and the greater the information-carrying capacity of a channel. For a digital channel this is defined in bits per second or BPS. For an analog channel it is dependent on the type and method of modulation used to encode the data.

2. Expressed in cycles per second (hertz), the amount of information that can flow through a channel. On the less technical side bandwidth is used to measure the amount of time it takes for a Web page to fully load. Internet users occasionally refer to larger graphics on Web pages as "bandwidth hogs" - the use of the term bandwidth in this case isn't quite accurate, but what it means is that the graphic is loading slowly due to its large file size.

Banner Ad Rotator
Displays alternating banner ads and includes an administration area with the ability to add, edit and delete banners from the rotation list.

BBS - Bulletin Board System
An electronic message center. The Bulletin Board System (BBS) allows you to dial in with a modem, review messages left by others, and leave your own message if you want. Bulletin boards are a particularly good place to find free or inexpensive software products. Most bulletin boards serve specific interest groups.

Any downloadable file that doesn't simply contain human-readable, ASCII text. Typically it refers to a runnable program available for downloading, but it can also refer to pictures, sounds or movies, among others. Most Usenet newsgroups have subgroups specifically for binaries; a posting in comp.sys.mac.comm might announce that a program is available for downloading, but the binary (the file itself) would be found in comp.sys.mac.comm.binaries. Newsgroups such as alt.pictures.binaries contain files for download which are actually pictures. You will need a newsreader to download and decode these files.

The smallest unit of computerized data, represented by a single-digit number in base-2--in other words, either a 1 or a zero. Bandwidth is usually measured in bits-per-second.

BPS - Bits-Per-Second
A measurement of the speed at which data is moved from one place to another

A program used to view, download, upload, surf or otherwise access documents (pages) on the World Wide Web. Browsers can be text-based, meaning they do not show graphics or images, but most are text- and graphical-based. Browsers read "marked up" or coded pages (usually HTML but not always) that reside on servers and interpret the coding into what we see "rendered" as a Web page. Netscape Navigator and Microsoft Internet Explorer are examples of Web browsers. The program you are using right now to view this information is called a browser.

Browser Compatibility
A term that compares the way a Web page looks on one WWW browser as opposed to another. Usually this is done with Microsoft Internet Explorer (MIE) and Netscape Navigator, but can also refer to cross-platform compatibility. (For example, the way a page renders or displays on a Windows system as opposed to a Mac.) The reason these incompatibilities exist is due to the way a browser interprets the Web page's code (HTML). The differences are usually very slight, but they're enough to annoy some Web designers and sometimes even their clients to the point in which great time and energy is spent in making a Web site compatible with any browser on any type of system. Browser compatibility is also used in conjunction with (and should not be confused with) the term browser support.

Browser Support
This refers to the ability of a particular browser to even recognize and interpret certain HTML or other Web page codes. For example, Netscape Navigator 1.0 did not have the ability to render a page layout in frames. This feature did not come along until version 2.0, therefore it can be said that Navigator 1.0 did not "support" frames.

A set of Bits that represent a single character. Usually there are 8 Bits in a Byte

Cable Modem
A modem attached to a coaxial cable television system. Cable modems can transmit data at 500 kilobytes a second, much faster than a typical computer modem that sends signals over telephone lines.

A directory on a server that "houses" all of the CGI programs. When you see this as a directory in your browser's URL window, it usually means you are either running or about to run a CGI program. The "binary" part refers to when many of the files placed in that directory were binary files. More recently, many of these files are text-based.

A software program used to contact and obtain data from a server software program on another computer, often across a great distance.

CNAME - Canonical Name
The Canonical Name resource record, CNAME, specifies an alias or nickname for the official, or canonical, host name. Alias records assign an alternate hostname to a specific hostname. Both hostnames point at whatever IP address the primary hostname is assigned to.

Most often used to refer to having a server that belongs to one person or group physically located on an Internet-connected network that belongs to another person or group.

A Rapid Application Development (RAD) system created by the Allaire Corporation of Cambridge, Mass, ColdFusion integrates browser, server and database technologies into Web applications. Cold Fusion Web pages include tags written in ColdFusion Markup Language (CFML) that simplify integration with databases and avoid the use of more complex languages like C++ to create translating programs. ColdFusion is the industry's leading cross-platform Web application server. With ColdFusion, Web developers can quickly develop and deliver a new generation of large-volume, transaction-intensive Web applications for everything from e-commerce to business automation and more.

Common Gateway Interface (CGI)
CGI is a set of rules that describe how a web server communicates with another piece of software on the same machine, and how the other piece of software (the CGI program) communicates with the web server. Many scripting languages, such as Perl, follow the CGI standard. This allows you to develop more interactive sites, by making use of system features.

A general-purpose computer term that refers to the way your computer's operating system is set up. It can also refer to the total combination of hardware components - central processing unit (CPU), video display device, keyboard and peripheral devices - that make up the computer system. The configuration is also at work in the software settings that allow various hardware components of a computer system to communicate with one another. A "vanilla" configuration is the standard "clean" and "no frills" version of a computer's configuration (no device drivers or extra settings). This is what a technician might set a system to when trying to troubleshoot a problem with a computer's hardware.

The state of being connected to the Internet or some other type of computer network. On the Internet, if you lose your connectivity, you are no longer online and must redial into your ISP. When ISPs get many users signing on all at once, the connectivity tends to be poor. "What is your connectivity?" usually means what kind of speed does your Internet connection support, like 28.8 or T-1.

A piece of information about your computer, something you clicked on, and/or you (such as your username) that is stored in a text file on your hard drive. A server accesses this information when you connect to a Web site that wants to know this information. One common occurrence of a "handing out a cookie", would be when you as a user, log into a system through a Web site. After you enter in your username and password, your browser saves a text file that it calls upon for later access. This prevents you from having to log in again if you happen to leave the Web site and then return at a later time. Cookies are also used in the process of purchasing items on the Web. It is because of the cookie that "shopping cart" technology works. By saving in a text file the name, and other important information about an item a user "clicks" on as they move through a shopping Web site, a user can later go to an order form, and see all the items they selected, ready for quick and easy processing.

Credit card processing
Online credit card processing is available through many of our partners, such as Verisign Payment Services or Cardservice International. For full details Click here

A Unix command for scheduling jobs to be executed sometime in the future. A cron is normally used to schedule a job that is executed periodically - for example, to send out a notice every morning. It is also a daemon process, meaning that it runs continuously, waiting for specific events to occur.

A form of real-time credit card processing

Dedicated Line
A telecommunications line that lets your computer have a direct, permanent connection to the Internet

Dial-Up Account
A basic type of Internet account that allows you to dial up an Internet Service Provider's (ISP) computer with a modem. These types of accounts usually have a UNIX or other command-line interface.

A manner in which messages to a list server mailing list can be automatically consolidated into one e-mail (the digest) and sent to the list subscribers periodically.

DLL - Dynamic Link Library
A Windows platform file that is actually an executable mini-program itself that is NOT executed directly by a user but by a running program or application

DNS - Domain Name System
A database system that translates an IP address into a domain name. For example, a numeric IP address like is converted into netlingo.com. The DNS is a static, hierarchical name service that uses TCP/IP hosts and is housed on a number of servers on the Internet. Basically, it maintains this database for figuring out and finding (or resolving) host names and IP addresses. This allows users to specify remote computers by host names rather than numerical IP addresses. Also referred to as Domain Name Service and Domain Name Server.

Domain Name or Domain
The unique name identifying a Web site, located at the right of the @ sign in an Internet address. Domain names always have two or more parts, separated by dots, as in www.yourdomain.com. Domains are tied to name servers, which direct to which IP address the domain should point. Any server can have multiple domain names, but a domain name can only point to one server.

Domain Registration
Our partnership with InterNIC allows us to register or transfer your domain with them seamlessly. Therefore, we charge no additional fee for InterNIC registration or transfers. However, be aware that you are still responsible for the cost of domain registration with InterNIC, which currently is $70 for two year, $150 for five year, and $250 for 10 year registrations.

DRAM - Dynamic Random-Access Memory
A memory chip contained on such devices as video and sound cards. DRAM is "dynamic" because the chip contains an electrical charge (as opposed to SRAM, see below). The electrical charge will die out eventually so it must refresh its memory regularly, which it does automatically from your CPU. The only reason you need to know about DRAM is because it is related to access time and video cards, etc.

DSN - Data Source Name
Data source names are used to access a database. Customers can create DSN's via their administration page.

Dynamic Content
Information on a Web site or Web page that changes often, usually daily and/or each time a user reloads or returns to the page. Content that is also structured based on user input. For example, when you search on some keywords on a search engine, the resulting page you get is a "dynamic" page, meaning the information was created based on the words you typed into the form on the previous page. Dynamic Web sites are usually driven by Web application environments such as Microsoft ASP or Allaire's ColdFusion, and the content is taken from a database each time a page request is made.

Dynamic SQL
Creates queries based on user data, environment variables, and previously returned query results. Dynamic SQL can also increase processing efficiency by executing multiple queries and sending them to multiple databases from a single browser request.

E-Commerce - Electronic Commerce
Quite simply, it means conducting business online. In the traditional sense of selling goods, it is possible to do this electronically because of certain software programs that run the main functions of an e-commerce Web site, such as product display, online ordering, and inventory management. The software, which works in conjunction with online payment systems to process payments, resides on a commerce server. The definition of e-commerce has expanded to include all kinds of commercial online transactions, like selling products via credit cards, charging for advertising on a high-traffic Web site, or trading stock in your brokerage account -- practically any way a company can derive revenue online is thought of as e-commerce.

E-mail - Electronic Mail
E-mail is the sending and receiving of messages, usually text, from one computer to another using e-mail software.

Developed by DigiCash and the Mark Twain Bank, ecash is the ability to use real money in an electronic purchasing system over the World Wide Web. The process involves you sending a check to Mark Twain Bank which in turn sends you software that gives you access to the ecash Mint where you draw funds to your hard drive for use when purchasing goods and services on the Internet.

A way of making data unreadable to everyone except the receiver, encryption is an increasingly common way of sending credit card numbers over the Internet when conducting commercial transactions.

A widespread networking scheme rated at 10 Mbs (megabits per second).

The characters after the dot in a file's name are considered its extension. This is used to determine how the file is formatted and viewed. For example a file named netlingo.html means that the file is coded in HTML and therefore must be viewed with a compatible program such as a Web browser in order to see it properly. On the Internet you will come across many different file extensions such as .dcr, .mov, .avi and .au. In order to properly handle these files your browser must be configured to recognize these extensions.

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
Documents that list and answer the most common questions on a particular subject

An open extension to CGI that provides higher performance by reusing processes to handle multiple requests.

File Extension
The group of letters after a period or "dot" in a file name is called the file extension. This extension refers to the type of file it is, for example, if the filename is readme.txt, the extension txt denotes this is a text file and can be viewed using a text editor such as Notepad or Simple Text. Operating systems such as MAC OS or Windows 95 will refer to a file's extension when choosing which application to launch when a user clicks on a particular file name.

A device that protects a private network from the public part, or a computer set up to monitor traffic between an Internet site and the Internet. A firewall is designed to increase a server's security by keeping unauthorized outsiders from tampering with a computer system.

FrontPage Compatibility
Allows you to edit your site using Microsoft FrontPage or Visual InterDev. Also allows you to make use of special built- in features that use FrontPage Extensions.

FrontPage Extensions
Server add-ons that allows you to make use of pre-defined functions such as a hit counter, Java buttons and form validation.

FTP - File Transfer Protocol
Common procedure used for downloading and uploading files over the Internet. With FTP you can log in to another Internet site and transfer (send or receive) files. Some sites have public file archives that you can access by using FTP with the account name "anonymous" and your e-mail address as the password. This type of access is called anonymous FTP. Macintosh users use a program called Fetch; one of the FTP programs for Windows is called WS-FTP

A computer system for exchanging information across incompatible networks that use different protocols. For example, many commercial services have e-mail gateways for sending messages to Internet addresses.

GIF - Graphic Interchange Format
A common format for image files, especially suitable for images containing large areas of the same color.

1000 or 1024 Megabytes

Guest Book
A simple guest book allows visitors to leave their name and a brief message from/on your site.

GUI - Graphical User Interface (goo-ey)
This term refers to a software front-end application meant to provide an attractive and easy-to-use interface between a computer user and an application.

HDML- Hand-Held Device Markup Language
The HTML for hand-held devices like Palm Pilots and PDAs. A simple language used to define hypertext-like content and applications for hand-held devices with small displays. HDML is designed to leverage the infrastructure and protocols of the World Wide Web while providing an efficient markup language for wireless and other handheld devices. Congruent with the capabilities and limitations of many handheld devices, HDML's focus goes beyond presentation and layout. HDML provides an explicit navigation model, which does not rely upon the visual context, required of HTML. As such, HDML offers an efficient means of providing content via the WWW infrastructure to handheld devices such as cellular phones, pagers, and wireless PDA's.

1. A term used to describe the accessing of a World Wide Web page. When a user "points" a browser to a Web site URL, the moment that user requests the HTML document is called a "hit". Hits are used to determine how popular a Web site is and plays an important role in assessing how much it costs to advertise on a particular Web page. Some Web site authors and developers use counters on their page to let people know how many other users (hits) have accessed that particular page that they are on. There has been great debate as to the validity of the "number of hits" pages or sites are said to receive due in part to Web servers that record hits not only on accesses to HTML pages but also the graphics, which are embedded in them.

2. Prior to 1994, the access of a Web file by a user on a server. Every element of a requested page (graphics, multimedia, etc.), including the HTML file itself, is counted as a hit. For example, if a Web page contains five graphics, then accessing the page generates six hits. Hits used to be a method of determining the amount of traffic a Web site received, but because businesses needed to isolate the exact number of times a page was requested in order to charge for advertising, this method was tossed aside in lieu counting the actual HTML page requests.

Any computer that can function as the beginning and end point of data transfers. An Internet host has a unique Internet address (IP address) and a unique domain or host name.

A list of frequently accessed World Wide Web sites. Usually the names of the sites are coded as hypertext, making them links. In this case the user must simply click on the name of the site in order to go there. (Yahoo! started as one major hotlist.)

Hotmail is a Web-based free e-mail system which adheres to the universal HTTP standard. It is based on the premise that e-mail access should be easy and possible from any computer connected to the World Wide Web. Web-based e-mail programs use a Web browser as an e-mail program, providing a globally retrievable form of e-mail.

HTML - Hypertext Markup Language
HTML is the lingua franca for publishing hypertext on the World Wide Web. It is a non-proprietary format based upon SGML, and can be created and processed in a wide range of tools from simple plain text editors to sophisticated WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) authoring tools. HTML uses tags like <h1> and <h1> to structure text into headings, paragraphs, lists, hypertext links and more.

HTTP - Hypertext Transfer Protocol
The protocol that tells the server what to send to the client, so the client can view Web pages, FTP sites, or other areas of the net.

HTTPS - Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure
A type of server software that provides the ability for secure transactions to take place on the World Wide Web. If a Web site is running on a HTTPS server you can type in HTTPS instead of HTTP in the URL section of your browser to enter into the "secured mode". Windows NT HTTPS and Netscape Commerce server software support this protocol.

Web site text that can be clicked on with a mouse, that in turn will take you to another Web page or a different area of the same Web page. Hyperlinks are created (coded) in HTML. They are also used to load multimedia files such as AVI movies and AU sound files.

A system of writing and displaying text that enables the text to be linked in multiple ways, to be available at several levels of detail, and to contain links to related documents. The term was coined by Ted Nelson to refer to a nonlinear system of information browsing and retrieval that contains associative links to other related documents. The World Wide Web uses hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) to provide links to pages and multimedia files.

IIS - Internet Information Server
Microsoft's Web server that runs on Windows NT platforms. IIS comes bundled with Windows NT 4.0; Because IIS is tightly integrated with the operating system, it is relatively easy to administer. Currently IIS is available only for the Windows NT platform, whereas Netscape's Web servers run on all major platforms, including Windows NT, OS/2 and UNIX.

Internet Backbone
This fast network spanning the world from one major metropolitan area to another is provided by a handful of national Internet service providers (ISPs). These companies and organizations use connections running at approximately 45 MB per second (T3 lines) linked up at specified interconnection points called national access points. Local ISPs connect to this backbone through routers so that data can be carried though the backbone to its destination.

Internet Protocol (IP) Address or IP Number
Sometimes called a dotted quad, the IP address is a unique number used to identify a machine on the Internet. The number consists of four numbers between 0 and 255 separated by dots ( Every machine on the Internet must have it's own IP address. Domains are tied to name servers, which direct to which IP address the domain should point.

Internet Security
Information traveling on the Internet usually takes a circuitous route through several intermediary computers to reach any destination computer. The actual route your information takes to reach its destination is not under your control. As your information travels on Internet computers, any intermediary computer has the potential to eavesdrop and make copies. An intermediary computer could even deceive you and exchange information with you by misrepresenting itself as your intended destination. These possibilities make the transfer of confidential information such as passwords or credit card numbers susceptible to abuse. This is where Internet security comes in and why it has become a rapidly growing concern for all who use the Internet.

InterNIC - Internet Network Information Center
A repository of information about the Internet. It is divided into two parts: directory services, which is run by AT&T in New Jersey, and registration services, which is run by Network Solutions in Virginia. It is funded partially by the National Science Foundation and partially by fees that are charged to register Internet domains. This is the place where you register URLs or Domain Names like www.netlingo.com and it basically involves a fee and several forms (some very technical), to set up.

A private network inside a company or organization that uses the same kinds of software that you would find on the public Internet, but that is only for internal use. As the Internet has become more popular, many of the tools used on the Internet are being used in private networks, often in the form of Web servers that are available only to employees. Note that an "Intranet" may not actually be an Internet; it may simply be a network.

ISDN - Integrated Services Digital Network
ISDN is a set of communications standards allowing a single wire or optical fiber to carry voice, digital network services and video. ISDN is intended to eventually replace the plain old telephone system (POTS). ISDN was first published as one of the 1984 ITU-T Red Book recommendations; the 1988 Blue Book recommendations added many new features. ISDN uses mostly existing Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) switches and wiring, upgraded so that the basic "call" is a 64 kilobits per second, all-digital end-to-end channel. Packet and frame modes are also provided in some places.

Key Words/Key Phrases
Words or sets of words used to improve ranking in search engines when those words are phrases are entered by a user. For example, if a person does a search for "pet supplies", while a person who has the key word "pet" in his page, the page with the key phrase "pet supplies" will be ranked higher in the search results.

LAN - Local Area Network
A network that connects computers in a small, pre-determined area (like a room, building or set of buildings). LANs can also be connected to each other via telephone lines and radio waves. Workstations and personal computers in an office are commonly connected to each other with a LAN. This allows them to have send/receive files and/or have access to the files and data. Each computer connected to a LAN is called a node.

Leased Line
Refers to a phone line (connection) that is rented for exclusive 24-hour/7-days-a-week use from one computer or network to another, or for constant access to the Internet. Also called a dedicated line.

Text and/or an image area on a Web page that a user can click on to connect to or reference another document. Commonly, links connect two Web pages or Web sites. They can also reference a different part of the same document, linking to a file which will download to your computer or triggering the launching of an external or helper application which will then process the clicked-on file.

List Server - Adding Headers
Capability of adding header or trailer text to all messages listed. The list owner can choose to display text information (entered in the Edit box) at the beginning or end of every message sent to the list. To enter the header information, the list owner selects the Enable Header option, clicks Edit, and then enters the text information. This information is entered in the header.txt file. To enter the trailer info, the list owner selects the Enable Trailer option, clicks Edit, and then enters the text information. This.information is entered in the trailer.txt file. For example, you can enter the Subscribe/Unsubscribe information for the list and have.it appear at the beginning or end of every message or digest that is sent to the list.

List Server - Digest
List server mailing lists can be posted as a digest. Messages to a list server mailing list can be accumulated and regularly posted.as a digest. A digest contains a group of messages sent to the list. Lists that receive a large volume of messages can give subscribers the option of periodically receiving a digest rather than being interrupted every few minutes with a new message from a list.

List Server - Public or Private
List server mailing lists can be public or private. A list owner can select "Disallow Subscriptions" which will refuse a Subscribe request to the list. The owner or administrator must add new users either by editing the Users file, or through the Web Remote Administration utility. Unsubscribe requests are always honored.

List Server - Subject Line
Capability of adding a text string to appear on the Subject line. The list owner can choose to display a text string (entered in the Edit box) at the beginning of the subject line of every message sent to the list. For example, if you enter [Software-Info] as the defined text string, the subject line of the messages will appear as follows: Subject: re: [Software-Info] What do you think of private-labeled software? The default string is the name of the list server mailing list.

ListServer lets you set up automated mailing lists on the server. It comes with a control to add/edit/delete users and to send new messages to your user group (each message has a limit of 1000 words). This package allows for 300 mailing list subscribers per list.

Log File Access
Raw log files are used to track the hits to your website. You can access them from your root directory.

Mail List
A system that allows people to send e-mail to one address, whereupon their message is copied and sent to all of the other subscribers to the mail list.

The directory on a host computer where your e-mail message are stored. With some systems you can choose between keeping saved messages on the server or on your local computer.

A million bytes

Message Board
An electronic message center (also called a bulletin board); part of the Bulletin Board System (BBS). Message boards are accessed by dialing in with a modem; once there one may review messages left by others or leave a message. Bulletin boards are a particularly good place to find free or inexpensive software products. Most bulletin boards serve specific interest groups.

Meta Tag
An optional HTML tag that is used to specify information about a Web document. Some search engines such as AltaVista use "spiders" to index Web pages. These spiders read the information contained within a page's META tag. So in theory, an HTML or Web page author has the ability to control how there site is indexed by search engines and how and when it will come up on a user's search. The META tag can also be used to specify an HTTP or URL address for the page to "jump" to after a certain amount of time. This is known as Client-Pull. What this means, is a Web page author can control the amount of time a Web page is up on the screen as well as where the browser will go next. Here's a look at the syntax for search engine indexing: Here's a look at the syntax for Client Pull: this will "refresh" or change to the URL specified in 30 seconds.

MIME - Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions
A protocol for Internet e-mail that enables the transmission of nontextual data such as graphics, audio, video and other binary types of files. An e-mail program such as Eudora is said to be "MIME Compliant" if it can both send and receive files using the MIME standard. When non-text files are sent using the MIME standard they are converted (encoded) into text - although the resulting text is not really readable. Besides e-mail software, the MIME standard is also universally used by Web servers to identify the files they are sending to Web clients. In this way new file formats can be accommodated simply by updating the browsers' list of pairs of MIME-types and appropriate software for handling each type.

A server that provides copies of the same files as another server. Some servers are so popular that other servers have been set up to mirror them and to spread the load on to more than one site. Many international sites have mirrors set up in other countries to allow quicker access for their international users.

Modem - Modulator, Demodulator
A device connecting a computer and to a phone line, that allows the computer to talk to other computers through the phone system. Basically, modems do for computers what a telephone does for humans. Generally there are 3 types of modems: external, PC Card and internal.

Mosaic is the common name of a World Wide Web multimedia browser program developed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) in Urbana-Champaign, Ill. It was the first Web browser that used the same interface for Macintosh, Windows and UNIX, and started the popularity of the Web. The official, copyrighted name of the program is NCSA Mosaic. The source code for Mosaic has been licensed by several companies, most notably, Netscape.

MX Record - Mail Exchange Record
Mail Server records designate the mailservers that will handle mail for your domain. If you have more than one mailserver, MX records also specify the order in which the mailservers will be used as primary, backup, etc.

To move around on the World Wide Web by following hypertext paths from document to document on different computers.

Contraction of Internet etiquette, the etiquette guidelines for posting messages to online services, and particularly Internet newsgroups. Netiquette covers not only rules to maintain civility in discussions (i.e., avoiding flames), but also special guidelines unique to the electronic nature of forum messages. For example, netiquette advises users to use simple formats because complex formatting may not appear correctly for all readers. In most cases, netiquette is enforced by fellow users who will vociferously object if you break a rule of netiquette.

Netscape Navigator
A highly popular World Wide Web browser. The program allows for Gopher, FTP, and Telnet access as well as e-mail and newsgroup retrieval and management. Many companies use Netscape server software to create Web pages and are therefore written to be best displayed using Netscape Navigator. The program is available for all platforms and is especially adept at displaying graphics.

Two or more computers that are connected. The most common types of networks are: * LAN - Local Area Network The computers are near each other, in the same office space, room or building. * WAN - Wide Area Network The computers are at different geographic locations and are connected by telephone lines or radio waves.

Same as forum, an on-line discussion group. On the Internet, there are literally thousands of newsgroups covering every conceivable interest. To view and post messages to a newsgroup, you need a newsreader, a program that runs on your computer and connects you to a news server on the Internet.

NIC - Networked Information Center
An office that handles information for a network. The most famous of these on the Internet is the InterNIC, which is where new domain names are registered.

NOC- Network Operations Center
Responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Internet's component networks

A Windows NT (New Technologies) computer or server

OC - Optical Center
Optical Carrier used to specify the speed of fiber optic networks conforming to the SONET standard

622.08 Mbps or 336 T-1's

2.488 Mbps

ODBC Connectivity
A standard database access method developed by Microsoft. The goal of ODBC is to make it possible to access any data from any application, regardless of which database management system (DBMS) is handling the data. ODBC manages this by inserting a middle layer, called a database driver , between an application and the DBMS. The purpose of this layer is to translate the application's data queries into commands that the DBMS understands. For this to work, both the application and the DBMS must be ODBC-compliant -- that is, the application must be capable of issuing ODBC commands and the DBMS must be capable of responding to them. Since version 2.0, the standard supports SAG SQL. Two types of ODBC connections are as follows: Jet Data Engine - This connection allows ODBC-compliant databases such as Microsoft Access, Foxpro, D-Base and others. SQL Server - This allows ODBC connection via TCP/IP to a Microsoft SQL server.

Abbreviation of Object Linking and Embedding (pronounced as separate letters or as "oh-leh"). OLE is a compound document standard developed by Microsoft Corporation. It enables you to create objects with one application and then link or embed them in a second application. Embedded objects retain their original format and link to the application that created them. Support for OLE is built into the Windows and Macintosh operating systems. A competing compound document standard developed jointly by IBM, Apple Computer, and other computer firms is called OpenDoc.

A unit of data sent across a network. Packet is a generic term used to describe a unit of data at any layer of the OSI protocol stack, but it is most correctly used to describe application layer data units (application protocol data units, APDUs).

Packet Switching
The method used to move data around on the Internet. In packet switching, all the data coming out of a machine is broken up into chunks; each chunk has the address of where it came from and where it is going. This enables chunks of data from many different sources to co-mingle on the same lines, and be sorted and directed to different routes by special machines along the way. This way many people can use the same lines at the same time.

Parallel Port
A parallel interface for connecting an external device such as a printer. Most personal computers have both a parallel port and at least one serial port. On PCs, the parallel port uses a 25-pin connector (type DB-25) and is used to connect printers, computers and other devices that need relatively high bandwidth. It is often called a Centronics interface after the company that designed the original standard for parallel communication between a computer and printer. (The modern parallel interface is based on a design by Epson.)

When two domains point to the same IP Address

A secret series of characters that enables a user to access a file, computer or program. On multi-user systems, each user must enter a password before the computer will respond to commands. The password helps ensure that unauthorized users do not access the computer. In addition, data files and programs may require a password. Ideally, the password should be something that nobody could guess. Most people choose a password that is easy to remember, such as their name or their initials. This is one reason it is relatively easy to break into most computer systems.

PGP - Pretty Good Privacy
A freeware program, developed by Philip Zimmermann, that allows a user to send e-mail messages to anyone in the world, in complete privacy. One can also send authentication with your messages so that the recipient can verify the source of the message. You can encrypt sensitive files on your computer so that the files remain private even if your computer and disks are stolen.

PHP Hypertext Preprocessor is a server-side, HTML-embedded scripting language used to create dynamic Web pages. In an HTML document, PHP script (similar syntax to that of Perl or C) is enclosed within special PHP tags. Because PHP is embedded within tags, the author can jump between HTML and PHP (similar to ASP and Cold Fusion) instead of having to rely on heavy amounts of code to output HTML. Because PHP is executed on the server, the client cannot view the PHP code. PHP can perform any task any CGI program can, but its strength lies in its compatibility with many types of databases. Also, PHP can talk across networks using IMAP, SNMP, NNTP, POP3 or HTTP.

PING - Packet Internet Groper
An Internet program used to determine whether a specific IP address is accessible. It works by sending a packet to the specified address and waiting for a reply, then reporting how many hops are required to connect two Internet hosts. PING is used primarily to troubleshoot Internet connections. There are many freeware and shareware PING utilities available for personal computers.

The type of computer or operating system on which a software application runs. For example, some common platforms are PC, Macintosh, Unix and NeXT. When someone knows more than one of these platforms or when a program can be used on more than one of these platforms, it is termed cross-platform.

POP - Post Office Protocol
POP refers to the protocol used by e-mail software, such as Eudora or Outlook Express, to retrieve electronic mail from a mail server. The protocol used by mail clients to retrieve messages from a mail server. This includes POP1, POP2, and POP3, the number denoting the different version number of the protocol. POP3 is the most common e-mail standard. POP is the protocol used by mail clients to retrieve messages from a mail server.

1. A place where information goes into or out of a computer, or both. For instance, the serial port on a personal computer is where a modem would be connected. 2. On the Internet, port often refers to a number that is part of a URL, appearing after a colon (:) right after the domain name. Every service on an Internet server "listens" on a particular port number on that server. Most services have standard port numbers; Web servers normally listen on port 80. Services can also listen on non-standard ports, in which case the port number must be specified in a URL when accessing the server, so you might see a URL of the form: gopher://peg.cwis.uci.edu:7000/ which shows a gopher server running on a non-standard port (the standard gopher port is 70). 3. To port is to translate a piece of software to bring it from one type of computer system to another, e.g. to translate a Windows program so that is will run on a Macintosh.

PPP - Point-to-Point Protocol
Communication protocol used over serial lines to support Internet connectivity.

Protocol is a set of rules governing behavior in certain situations. Foreign diplomats learn local protocol to ensure that they behave correctly in another country. The protocols ensure that there are no communication breakdowns or serious misunderstandings. Computers need protocols, too, to ensure that they can communicate with each other correctly and to ensure data is exchanged correctly. The Internet is made up of various protocols for various functions.

A question usually used in connection with a search engine or database to find a particular file, Web site, record or set of records in a database.

RAID is a way of storing the same data in different places by placing data on multiple hard disks. By placing data on multiple disks operations can overlap in a balanced way, improving performance.

RAM - Random-Access Memory
Hardware inside your computer that retains memory on a short-term basis. This information is stored temporarily while you're working on it. RAM comes in several different forms:

RealNetworks' (formerly Progressive Networks) RealAudio client-server software system enables Internet and online users equipped with conventional multimedia personal computers and voice-grade telephone lines to browse, select and play back audio or audio-based multimedia content on demand, in real time. This is a real breakthrough compared to typical download times encountered with delivery of audio over conventional online methods with which audio is downloaded at a rate that is five times longer than the actual program.

A term encompassing RealNetworks' RealAudio and RealVideo

A streaming technology developed by RealNetworks (formerly Progressive Networks) for transmitting live video over the Internet. RealVideo uses a variety of data compression techniques and works with both normal IP connections as well as IP Multicast connections.

Remember My Login
If you select this option you will not be prompted for your username and password when entering the site. This maynot be secure if you are using a public or shared computer. Your computer must be set to accept cookies to use this feature.

Remote Terminal
It is possible to log in to a remote computer by using an application program based on TELNET - a terminal emulation protocol made for this purpose. The user can therefore enter commands on a keyboard attached to their local computer and access files, etc., on a remote computer that may be located anywhere in the world.

Hardware (or software) that connects a local network to the Internet. Routers look at the destination addresses of the packets passing through them and decide which route to send them on.

How well a solution to a given issue will work when the size of the issue increases.

Another term for macro or batch file, a script is a list of commands that can be executed without user interaction. A script language is a simple programming language with which you can write scripts.

Search Engine
A program which acts like a card catalog for the Internet. Search engines attempt to help a user isolate desired information or resources by searching for keywords that the user specifies. The method for finding this information is usually done by maintaining an index of Web resources that can be queried for the keywords or concepts entered by the user. The index can be built from specific resource lists or created by Web wanderers, robots, spiders, crawlers and worms. From the Net surfer point of view, search engines can be quite tiresome and not very fruitful if you don't know how to use them correctly. Different engines are good for different kinds of searches, so to optimize search results, read the search engine's help section before searching.

A host computer on a network that holds information (such as Web sites) and responds to requests for information from it (links to another Web page). The term server is also used to refer to the software that makes the act of serving information possible. Commerce servers, for example, use software to run the main functions of an e-commerce Web site, such as product display, online ordering, and inventory management. You'll also hear this described as "shopping cart technology".

Server has no DNS Entry
This can mean that the URL you have is an incorrect address. Netscape finds Web pages by querying a Domain Name Server (DNS) computer and asking the computer for the numerical address of the name address in the link. If it does not get a reply, it's because the DNS computer has no record of the name.

Shopping Cart
A shopping cart is a piece of software that acts as an online store's catalog and ordering process. Typically, a shopping cart is the interface between a company's Web site and its deeper infrastructure, allowing consumers to select merchandise; review what they have selected; make necessary modifications or additions; and purchase the merchandise.

SLIP - Serial Line Internet Protocol
Communication protocol used over serial lines to support Internet connectivity.

To connect to the Internet via Serial Line Internet Protocol (SLIP) or Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP), you need to have TCP/IP software on your computer. When connected by SLIP/PPP, your computer actually becomes another node on the Internet. You can then run popular client software directly. This has an advantage over a shell account where you will have to double download in order to transfer a file by FTP because the data first goes to network and then to a local machine.

SMTP - Simple Mail Transfer Protocol
The standard Internet protocol for transferring electronic mail messages

The word tagged onto computer terms when it is meant to imply that the product or software is meeting the needs and addressing the "problems" that have been associated with a particular type of computer software package or application. Usually these needs are in abundance and encompass a variety of tasks.

To send identical and irrelevant postings to many different newsgroups or mailing lists. Usually this posting is something that has nothing to do with the particular topic of a newsgroup or of no real interest to the person on the mailing list. The name comes from a Monty Python song and is considered to be a serious violation of netiquette.

SQL - Structured Query Language
The standardized query language for requesting information from a database. The original version called SEQUEL (structured English query language) was designed by an IBM research center in 1974 and 1975. Oracle Corporation first introduced SQL as a commercial database system in 1979.

SQL Server
A Relational Data Base Management System (RDBMS) from Sybase Corporation. SQL Server was designed for client/server use and is accessed by applications using SQL. It runs on OS/2, Windows NT, NetWare servers, VAXen, and UNIX workstations. Generically, any database management system (DBMS) that can respond to queries from client machines formatted in the SQL language. When capitalized, the term generally refers to either of two database management products from Sybase and Microsoft. Both companies offer client-server DBMS products called SQL Server.

SRAM - Static Random-Access Memory
SRAM is used for caching because it is a lot faster. This chip holds its contents without refreshing from the CPU.

SSI - Server Side Include
A type of HTML comment that directs the Web server to dynamically generate data for the Web page whenever it is requested.

SSL - Secured Sockets Layer
A protocol that delivers server authentication, data encryption and message integrity. SSL is layered beneath application protocols such as HTTP, SMTP, Telnet, FTP, Gopher and NNTP, and layered above the connection protocol TCP/IP. This strategy allows SSL to operate independently of the Internet application protocols. With SSL implemented on both the client and server, your Internet communications are transmitted in encrypted form. Information you send can be trusted to arrive privately and unaltered to the server you specify and no other.

Static IP
An IP address which is the same every time you log on to the Internet. See IP address for more information.

The StreamWorks Player brings the power of networked audio and video to the desktop. You can play "live" and "on-demand" audio and video from StreamWorks Servers across the globe. The StreamWorks Transmitter allows for LIVE network encoding of digital audio and video over today's networks. Taking inputs from analog audio and video connections, like the ones on the back of a VCR, StreamWorks Transmitter is capable of enabling live, real-time MPEG audio and video over industry standard TCP/IP networks.

A leased line connection capable of carrying data at 1,544,000 bits-per-second. At maximum theoretical capacity, a T-1 line could move a megabyte in less than 10 seconds. That is still not fast enough for full-screen, full-motion video, for which you need at least 10,000,000 bits-per-second. T-1 is the fastest speed commonly used to connect networks to the Internet.

A leased line connection capable of carrying data at 44,736,000 bits-per-second. This is more than enough to do full-screen, full-motion video.

A tag is used to describe a type of command or instruction usually in regards to HTML or Web page code. HTML tags look like this: , , or , always with a pair of brackets (<>) surrounding the specific instruction.

TCP/IP - Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol
This set of protocols makes TELNET, FTP, e-mail, and other services possible among computers that don't belong to the same network.

An Internet program for connecting to a remote host or server. The Telnet interface is text-based and a user usually has to enter their login name and password before gaining access to the system. Some of the things that can be done with Telnet access include checking e-mail, downloading programs and chatting with other Telnet users. It is one of the oldest Internet activities and is primarily used to access online databases or to read articles stored on university servers. It is also possible to Telnet via your Web browser by changing the http:// to telnet:// and entering in the site's address.

1000 Gigabytes

A device that allows you to send commands to a computer somewhere else. At a minimum, this usually means a keyboard and a display screen and some simple circuitry. Usually you will use terminal software in a personal computer - the software pretends to be ("emulates") a physical terminal and allows you to type commands to a computer somewhere else.

Terminal Server
A special-purpose computer with places to plug in many modems on one side and with a connection to a LAN or host machine on the other side. The terminal server answers calls and passes the connections on to the appropriate node. Most terminal servers can provide PPP or SLIP services if connected to the Internet.

An operating system, invented in 1969 at AT&T Bell Laboratories, that was made available to researchers and students in 1973. It was used to develop the Internet's communication software protocols. An interactive time-sharing system invented in 1969 by Ken Thompson after Bell Labs left the Multics project, originally so he could play games on his scavenged PDP-7. Dennis Ritchie, the inventor of C, is considered a co-author of the system. The turning point in UNIX's history came when it was reimplemented almost entirely in C during 1972--1974, making it the first source-portable operating system. UNIX subsequently underwent mutations and expansions at the hands of many different people, resulting in a uniquely flexible and developer-friendly environment. By 1991, UNIX had become the most widely used multi-user general-purpose operating system in the world.

URL - Uniform Resource Locator
Describes the location and access method of a resource on the Internet All Web sites have URLs. One could say a URL is to a web site as a telephone number is to a telephone or a street address is to a house. Although Web site URLs are sometimes long and hard to read, many browsers have a bookmark feature, which allows you to save the location (URL) of Web sites you want to return to. The URL "http://www.yourdomain.com" describes the type of access method being used (http) and the server location which hosts the Web site (www.yourdomain.com).

Vacation Message
A message automatically sent as a reply to any message received in a specified mailbox, in this case to inform the original sender that the recipient is away and will not be able to respond. Also known as an autoresponder.

Simulation of the real thing. Means "almost" or "in effect only". You will see this term appear before various computer terms to indicate simulation technology that enables you to cross boundaries and experience something without requiring its physical presence. The Internet is also seen as a "virtual" world.

WAN - Wide Area Network
A network that connects computers over a large geographic area

Web Hosting
Web hosting allows your Web site to be connected to the Internet at high speed via a Web server so its information can be viewed globally through a browser. Metaphorically speaking, renting space on a server is comparable to renting an apartment. For a monthly fee, you reside in that apartment and all maintenance is the responsibility of the property. You also have access to certain amenities that would otherwise be a costly investment. A Web hosting company houses your Web site on its own secure servers, enabling you to affordably leverage the power of a high-speed network, 24/7 expert monitoring and support, and state-of-the-art technology.

WebTrends offers Web tracking services, such as financial, traffic, and more. With WebTrends reporting you can really see who is hitting your site, and which pages are the most popular. WebTrends contains graphical and table based reporting, so that you can find vital information about how your website is being viewed.

A means of looking up names in a remote database. Used initially as an aid for finding e-mail addresses for people at large institutions or companies.

A medium-capacity communications circuit/path. It usually implies a speed from 64Kbps to 1.544Mbps.

Windows NT
Windows NT is a 32-bit operating system that supports preemptive multitasking. There are two versions of Windows NT: Windows NT Server is designed to act as a server in networks, and Windows NT Workstation is for stand-alone or client workstations

WWW - World Wide Web
A system of Internet servers that support specially formatted documents. The documents are formatted in a language called HTML (HyperText Markup Language) that supports links to other documents, as well as graphics, audio, and video files. This means you can jump from one document to another simply by clicking on hot spots. Not all Internet servers are part of the World Wide Web.

Short for extensible markup language, a specification developed by the . XML is a pared-down version of SGML, designed especially for Web documents. It allows designers to create their own customized tag, enabling the definition, transmission, validation and interpretation of data between applications and between organizations.

A World Wide Web subject tree created by David Filo and Jerry Yang of the Department of Computer Science at Stanford University. With a keen eye for the popular as well as the useful, Filo and Yang have created a directory of Web resources that performs a reported 10 million searches across the World Wide Web a week.

ZV Port
Short for zoomed video port, a port that enables data to be transferred directly from a PC Card to a VGA controller. The port is actually a connection to a zoomed video bus. This new bus was designed by the PCMCIA to enable notebook computers to connect to real-time multimedia devices such as video cameras. The first notebook computers with the ZV port arrived in late 1996.