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How does the Internet work?

thehumzahasan profile image Humza Hasan ・2 min read

We all have been using the Internet in our daily life for communicating, streaming, trading, shopping, sharing, travelling, etc purposes to name a few. Our lives have been revolving around the usage of the internet where on average a person uses 31.4 GB per month (as per The NPD Group Market Analysis) which is at almost 25% increase from the data collected the last year. Another report suggests users spend around 2 hours on average per day on social media and is nearly 4 hours on average active on the internet.

Since we are so much depended on the internet, let's dive deeper into the world of the internet and explore how the internet actually works!

Let's start with our favourite Browser first.

Browser

A browser is a software application used to makes a request to the server using URL's and then render the response data. The modern browsers can also interpret and run code written by other applications too.

The next big word is URL

Uniform Resource Locator or URL as we commonly know it, helps us to find the server and render the resource of the server. A URL is a heterogeneous combination of protocols, hostname, path and query string(if any). Each URL is mapped with a unique IP address of its own. This IP address is then passed onto the DNS which takes the IP address and looks up in different servers.

URL

This brings us to the next set of fancy terms, which is DNS and IP Address.

DNS or Domain Name Server is responsible for converting the human-readable URL (eg: https://codingdeck.com/) into machine-readable IP Address(eg: 104.24.123.112). This is possible because the DNS system works like a phonebook which maps the name with the number. This entire process is popularly known as DNS Lookup.

DNS Lookup

Now let's take up these fancy numbers which we called IP Address earlier. Each computer in order to communicate with other machines over the internet has been allotted with a unique identity which we call as IP address. We can think of IP address as the physical address where each computer or website resides and in order to visit them, we have to go to their address.

This brings us to the last stage were using the IP address we hit the Web Server and get back the response data rendered in our browser, which is nothing but the website we were trying to access.

This, in short, is how the internet works in the background when we try to access a website or web application from our devices.

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Humza Hasan

@thehumzahasan

A Javascript explorer. Exploring the way towards MERN Stack !

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