A server is a computer that serves information to other computers. These computers, called clients, can connect to a server through either a local area network or a wide area network, such as the internet. A server doesn’t have the screen or keyboard. And although your computer stores files and data you’ve put on it, a server stores all the data associated with the websites that are hosted by it and shares that info with all computers and mobile devices (like yours) that need to access them.
How do other computers connect to a server?
With a local network, the server connects to a router or switch that all other computers on the network use. Once connected to the network, other computers can access that server and its features. For example, with a web server, a user could connect to the server to view a website, search, and communicate with other users on the network.
An Internet server works the same way as a local network server, but on a much larger scale. The server is assigned an IP address by InterNIC, or by web host. Usually, users connect to a server using its domain name, which is registered with a domain name registrar. When users connect to the domain name (such as “avalindata.com“), the name is automatically translated to the server’s IP address by a DNS resolver.
The domain name makes it easier for users to connect to the server, because the name is easier to remember than an IP address. Also, domain names enable the server operator to change the IP address of the server without disrupting the way that users access the server. The domain name can always remain the same, even if the IP address changes.