The hostname and domain name is the main component of any network address. To work with the networking and website, you must know about the hostname and domain name. This guide will cover the basic idea of the hostname and domain name and their differences with these supporting topics:
- What is a Hostname?
- What is a Domain Name?
- Difference Between a Hostname and a Domain Name
What is a Hostname?
Any device connected to the local network is assigned a name to differentiate it from other devices on the local network called hostname. If several computers are connected to a network, every computer is given a separate hostname to identify the user. The hostname is only used within the local network or location, and every computer within the local network will have a different hostname.
The hostname information is in Linux’s “/etc/hostname” file. It is the human-readable name that differentiates it from other systems within the network. To connect/search to a particular system, we can connect/search it via the hostname. For instance, two computers are within the same network named “abc” and “xyz”; to search a computer simply, search abc, and its details will be listed.
For example, if the website address is “www.google.com”, then google is the “hostname” of the address.
To view the hostname name in Linux, we cat use the cat command with the default hostname file “/etc/hostname”:
$ cat /etc/hostname
To alternate way to view the system’s hostname with several useful details in Linux, run the following command:
We can easily change the hostname of any computer by using the below-stated command, where <new-hostname> will be replaced with your desired hostname:
$ sudo hostnamectl set-hostname <new-hostname>
To change the current hostname of the computer to “testlinux”, run the following command:
The hostname is changed to “testlinux”.
What is a Domain Name?
The domain name is the universal address that identifies any website on the internet. The domain name identifies any website or service globally, and the domain name can be associated with the specific website over the whole internet globally. It is utilized to access the website or service from web browsers, making the IP addresses more friendly.
For instance, if a website has the address www.linuxblog.edu.us, then here,
- “linuxblog” is the hostname.
- “edu” is the subdomain name.
- “.us” is the domain name.
The term fully qualified domain name is commonly used in networking:
FQDN = Hostname + Domain Name
This is basic information about Hostname and Domain Name. Let’s discuss the differences between them.
Difference Between Hostname and Domain Name
The hostname and the domain name differences are as follows:
The hostname identifies any device or computer name on the local network. It identifies locally only over the network. While the domain name identifies any online service (website) on any network. It is unique over the whole internet.
The hostname can be controlled by the local system user or internet provider/administrator while the domain name is fully controlled by the domain owner.
The hostname is registered within the network (locally), while the domain name is unique over the whole network and registered globally by the domain providers.
The hostname is unique within the network while the domain name is unique over the whole internet.
The hostname is owned by the operating organization while the domain name can be owned by any individual or any organization as well.
The hostnames can easily be changed from the computer or user end while the domain name is complex to rename the domain name as the domain providers usually change it.
The hostname is resolved to an IP address to differentiate between local network systems. While the domain name is resolved to an IP address to differentiate between websites globally.
These are the differences between hostname and domain name.
A hostname is a local computer or machine name that identifies it in the local network, while the domain name is the universal name that identifies it all over the internet. The hostname is administered and registered by the local service provider, while the domain name is managed and registered globally. We can easily change the hostname and resolve it on the local network. While the domain name is complex to rename and can be resolved globally.