Publishers of technology books, eBooks, and videos for creative people

Home > Articles > Web Design & Development > Usability

Web Design Reference Guide

Hosted by

Online Resources

Last updated Oct 17, 2003.

  • DNS Stuff — Upon entering DNS Stuff, the site says, "You appear to be located in UNITED STATES, based on your IP of ##.###.##.### (blanked out on purpose, 'k). It takes you about 7.447ms (each way) to get here! Cool information, which is what you'll get from the site. It offers domain tests, IP tests, and hostname tests. If you don't know what the lookup tool does, click on the ? to get a pop-up with a brief explanation. This is a good playground for learning about DNS stuff and understanding possible problematic DNS/IP addresses. Use the free e-mail lookup by entering the domain name of the email in question (for ex: if the email address is, then enter
  • DNS Report — Some domains have DNS (domain name server) problems. A domain name is what makes an URL easy to remember. Instead of entering in the location box, you enter The IP address is converted into an understandable address, which is the domain name. Entering a URL runs the report, which looks at the parent servers, NS (name servers), SOA (start of authority) records, MX (mail exchange servers) records, and the WWW record. The information may not make much sense, but doing a little research will help with the explanations. The site also has a mail test tool for identifying mail delivery problems for a domain.
  • DNS Resource Directory — Resources to all things DNS.
  • BetterWhois. A search engine allowing you to look up existing domains and get the information behind them (registration and expiration dates, IP address, name server, ICANN registrar, and the owner's information).
  • FTP RFC. Request for Comments with the official specification of the File Transfer Protocol (FTP).
  • ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). Provides a list of accredited companies to act as registrars for acquiring domain names.
  • OpenSSH. A project whose goal is to support the SSH protocol to ensure security when remotely connecting or transferring files between a local PC and a remote server.

The following Web sites offer host provider information and ratings to help you find the perfect host for a Web site.