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Domain Name Registration and Availability
Where do I start?

How do I get a Domain Name, or find out if someone already has it?

A domain is, to a websurfer, what your site is called and how it is remembered. It's what you'll find connected to the "www." in your browser (www.martnet.com, for instance). For technical gibb... er, information... on domain names, look here. This document will focus on checking availability, and registering a name quickly. After you do that, you might want to check the aforementioned link for a clearer picture of how this all works and what it means to you.

After you read this paragraph, click on this and enter the name you wish to use, then click "find out." Notice that "www." is already on the form; don't type it in! Martnet.com, hwg.org and withouta.net are all examples of how you should enter them. Do that now, then come back here (without closing that window).

If you saw a whole buncha stuff about Administrative contacts, the phrase "...is registered at," and/or anything that makes no sense to you, then that domain is owned by someone else. The Registrant did what you tried to do, but sooner. They are the owner. The Admin contact works with the thing, the Billing contact pays, and the technical contact is the kind of person who writes web pages like this. It's not unusual for some or all of them to be the same person or entity.

At this stage, you should probably come up with a different name. It's possible to approach the current owner - you are viewing public information, after all - but they know they have a rapidly-shrinking resource, so be prepared to hear an outrageous price quoted to you if you offer to buy it. Then again, some people just never get bored, and may give you a name they have no further use for or never got anywhere with.

If you're lucky, you saw:

{whatever}.{wha} does not appear to be registered.

appear above the search textbox. Congratulations! No one owns that yet. Get it quick before someone figures out that you want it. The above link includes a search form and links to related services at MartNet for hosting, parking, registering, etc., but if you closed it, use the above. Hey, I've gone all this way down the page before I tried to sell you something...



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