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GoDaddy’s Meltdown
On Monday (September 10, 2012), thousands – perhaps millions – of websites went dark when GoDaddy’s servers went down. This may or may not have been the result of impressive hacking; a member of the group Anonymous claimed credit while GoDaddy asserts that it was absolutely "not caused by external influences." While shockwaves shuddered across our Internet-addicted society and social media outlets like Facebook erupted with the news, the team at RE Technology saw an excellent opportunity to discuss the logistics of website hosting. What GoDaddy DoesFirst, let’s take a look at GoDaddy’s business model, what they actually do. This will help explain the dramatic results of yesterday’s incident. While they offer a broad array of services, there are 3 primary services that are important in this scenario.   GoDaddy is the world’s largest domain registrar. This means that they manage the circulation, assignment, and transfer of domain names for commercial gain. In other words, if you want to buy a domain name for your new website (let’s say you’d like to use www.SuzySellsRealEstate.com), you get in touch with a domain registrar like GoDaddy to confirm that the domain name is available and buy it. The company is also a DNS server. This means that they translate the IP address of your website into the domain name you’ve purchased (and vice versa). So, without a DNS server, you (and anyone trying to access your site) would be typing in a series of numbers like, rather than www.SuzySellsRealEstate.com. They also host websites. You’re probably familiar with website hosting, but in case you’re not, here’s a simple explanation. The Web host for your site is someone you pay to store the information for your Web pages on their server and to deliver that information to anyone who wants to visit your website at any time.