What is Web Hosting and why do I need it?

As well as a domain name (eg example.com) your website needs to reside on a web server somewhere on the internet. This is essentially a computer housed in a datacentre that is attached to the internet and capable of being accessed using a web browser. The webserver consists of specialist software to manage and server your website, including a specialist operating system, security software, the webserver management software and a database which contains most of your website content.

Your webserver is accessed via an IP address which usually consists of four 3 digit numbers separated by fullstops (eg Your domain name is translated to the webserver IP Address using the Domain Name Service (DNS). Think of your domain name as a PO Box and your webserver as your website’s physical address.

I already have a Domain Name - Why do I need the extra web hosting?

Think of your domain name as a PO Box and your webserver as your website's physical address. You need both to run a website. They can be provided by seperate suppliers - you don't need us to register your domain name to use our webhosting (Technically you could get away without a domain name but you'd have to tell your site visitors the IP address of your website which would be very un-user friendly)

Can I use my own computer to host the website?

No. You need a specialist computer with a dedicated link to the internet to run a website.
  • How to: What is a Domain Name and why do I need one?
  • Article published 25th March 2022
    Last modified 23rd January 2024