Creating Your Own Blog Part 1 - Intro & Setting up the Domain
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Published
Apr 13, 2021
 
Have you ever wondered how your computer knows where to go when you type something like kylesferrazza.com into your web browser?
Do you wish you could have your very own site for publishing content to your heart's content?
This article is for you! Follow along in this series for beginners to learn how to get started with your own blog on a custom domain.
In this section, we will acquire a domain for use on the blog site.

Why should I trust you?

I am a cybersecurity student at Northeastern University, and have built my fair share of websites. The website you are reading this blog post on right now is proof.
This series of articles was created for a writing class for an assignment on educating the public on a technical topic. I hope you find it useful!

What is a domain?

A "domain name" is the name you see in your web browser when you visit a website. Some examples you may be familiar with include:
  • google.com
  • ieee.org
  • kylesferrazza.com
Getting your own domain name is the first step towards setting up your own website and creating a unique space for yourself online.

Registering a Domain

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a nonprofit organization that hands out domain names to various companies known as registrars. Registrars are user-facing companies that take these names, and sell them to users as yearly subscriptions.
So, in order to get your own domain name, you need to head to a registrar to obtain one. Most standard domain names cost between $8 and $20 per year, with some exceptions for very short or very popular names.
I highly recommend Google Domains for your first domain, as the checkout process and subsequent configuration are very easy to understand, even for beginners.
To start, head here to search for an available domain on Google Domains. A very easy-to-remember format for a personal site is <firstname><lastname>.com. Also be sure to check out other endings like .site and .ninja to add some personal flair!
Once the domain is paid for and registered, you now own your own personal space on the internet! Keep following along to learn how to make it your own.

Student Discounts

There are various ways to get discounted (or free!) domain names as a student.
If you are a student at Northeastern University, you can sign in to Microsoft Azure with your Northeastern credentials to obtain a free year of registration for a standard domain with name.com.

What is DNS?

Now that you have the domain name, it's time to tell computers all over the world how to translate that name into an IP address running a website!
This is the job that the Domain Name System (DNS) performs.
Head to the next post to learn how to set up your domain's DNS to point to a website that you control!

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