General Virtual Server Information
What is a Domain Name?
A Domain Name allows your URL to be http://www.yourcompany.com. The purpose of obtaining a Domain Name is to give your web site a shorter URL, or Web address. This has many advantages- to give your site the appearance of having it's own server, and thus a larger presence on the Web; to make it easier for people to remember your Web location; to allow your URL to fit on a business card; and to attach your company name to its Web name.
More technically, in reserving a Domain Name one is registering with InterNic's database, the Domain Name Server. Upon DNS registration one has reserved this URL forever (though policy may change). Please refer to Internic's FTP site or Internic's Web site for current policies and procedures. An interesting note is that half of InterNic, a non-profit organization, is run by AT&T!?.
Simply put, N. Shaw & Associates has reserved many I.P. numbers (the true address of everybody on the Web, ours is 220.127.116.11 for example). A company pays rent to N. Shaw & Associates for use of this number and for attaching the reserved Domain Name to this address. A company's I.P. # will change when changing providers, but the name can and should remain the same. The I.P. Number points to the Domain Name.
Note: it is very important to realize that the portion yourcompany is the Domain Name. Not www.yourcompany.com. The www. is a common Server name pre-fix on the Web - this is different! The .com is for commercial entities, which most companies fall into. (Many people ask for .net and sometimes this can be obtained. However, this is between you & InterNic- with the possibility that InterNic will reject the request three weeks later! The guidelines are explicit in the DNS form. Read it.)
What flexibility do I have with DNS names (my URL)?
Typically, there is no problem with registering http://yourcompany.com -vs- http://www.yourcompany.com. In fact, your N. Shaw & Associates makes sure that both are taken care of during DNS registration-a proper set-up. This is considered true Virtual Server. Otherwise, any name is possible so long as you check the name first. This does not 100% guarantee the name is not taken. The reason for this is that, though DNS lists pending names in its database upon receipt of the registration form, there is a backlog of putting these in the database. So, you can search all but the forms waiting to be put in the pending file- a backlog of the backlog, if you will. This chance of duplicating another name is slight, but real. As with everything on the Web, the backlog is growing exponentially and is currently at upwards of three weeks to completely register.
How do I register my Name with DNS?
Check the name first. Then contact us. This should be done after we receive the N. Shaw & Associate's Contract. The easiest way to do our contract is to bring the page up on your browser, use File: Print to print a copy, fill-out the form properly, and Fax (707 545-3926) it to N. Shaw & Associates.
A) Web Space Contract-
Mail or Fax to:
N. Shaw & Associates
3200 Dutton Avenue
P.O. Box 3088
Santa Rosa, California 95407
Tel: 707 575-1316
Fax: 707 545-3926
B) DNS Registration-
Use the contract, and the DNS Registration form has a section devoted to transfer (the time and cost with InterNic is the same as for a new D.N.). Please refer to the InterNic Page for more information. If needed, please include a Cover Page stating explicitly your former Provider's location, your Domain Name information, and when and how you want the transfer to be made. There are many combinations of transfer options, all of which are possible, and your desires simply need to be attached to our contract and faxed-in.
What about routing my old site's & SLIP\PPP's E-Mail accounts?
As above, any requests are usually not a problem. We can point new mailboxes to old mailboxes anywhere. There is a space on our contract to specify this, and any unusual requests should be handled in a Cover Letter.
Storage & Traffic
N. Shaw & Associates is allowing our customers to have 20 megs (storage) and 500 megabytes of transport each month.
This will allow you to get as many hits as your site deserves.
What is your policy on Customer Support?
Please read our Statement of Purpose first. Our policy is unlimited customer support via e-mail or telephone as time permits. It is first requested that each company read the current version of the FAQ before calling or mailing us. The purpose of the FAQ is to tell you, or point you to, the answer to your question. It is requested that the 707 575-1316 number & the e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org be used for questions regarding account set-up, contract questions, policy & service questions, problems related to our service, and the like. It is also requested that the 707 575-1316 (Santa Rosa, CA, USA) number & other addresses be used for all other questions- for example, questions regarding new CGI script setup, consulting advice, simply to chat and introduce your company & its idea to us, or whatever.
The purpose of 'limiting' Customer Support is to reduce our costs, and thus the costs to the customer(s). It is our hope that through the combinations of the FAQ, E-Mail, that all questions can be answered. It is also hoped that you will find our staff knowledgeable and friendly, with a variety of experiences with "business on the Web".
What is 20 Megs of Webspace anyhow?
Again, using the average HTML page at 100K, one divides this into 20 Megabytes (the Basic Account limit) and gets 100 pages including graphics - quite a large Web Site. Now, if your company is interested in an FTP site, or you are running high-demand, high-overhead CGI scripts or whatever, you'll find that 20 Megs is like water. The good news is that for only $5/month additional you can obtain another 20 Megs! What can we say? We're cheap.
What can I, and what can I not, do with my Webspace?
The rules are this:
1) The following rules are not negotiable.
2) Obscene or pornographic anything;
3) Illegal activities in the United States or State of California;
4) Threatening or slanderous material;
5) Any material deemed by N. Shaw & Associates to be degrading to our Network and/or our other customers.
Now, one would think that this is self-explanatory. However, we get questions everyday for us to clarify this list and explain why this is our policy. Second things first, why?- because we can! Just as some places of business require Shirt & Shoes or a dress code to enter their store, so does N. Shaw & Associates. There is no difference.
Quite frankly, with all of the unknowns out there, the eyes of the Man are looking at the Net. This is especially true for the infrastructure organizations (like us) that allow anyone a place to put his stuff on the Web (this is what university systems are for!). So, in the near future there will be a clamp-down of some sort, and a corresponding backlash by the Web Police (though I doubt it's possible, anybody know of someone cracking the Cyber-Nanny yet?). Point is, one bad egg could shut-down our Server. We have immense responsibilities to our other businesses who's livelihood may depend on N. Shaw & Associates.
Traffic is another concern. Anyone who spends 1 surfing minute on the Web knows that the easiest way to generate Web traffic is to just say you have some sort of interesting content at your site - not even to actually have it! Unfortunately, many sites have shut-down because of someone doing this. [This degrades the Web - if you're gonna put a site up then label it correctly! Imagine if all sites did this - it would eliminate the Search feature of the Web entirely]. Again, keep in mind that you are not alone on our Servers, you're in an office park. No business would have employees running naked, shooting pistols off, and stuff 1000 people in a 1000 square foot office space without the Landlord and surrounding businesses evicting you. N. Shaw & Associates will evict you. We will not tolerate any material that may jeopardize the service to our customers.
Enough said. That was the Long explanation. The Short of it is that N. Shaw & Associates simply doesn't want this stuff on our servers.
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