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Garson Registration Services

Click here for searching and/or registering a domain name

Here are some answers to common website questions you might have about Domain Name Registration.






What is a domain name?

A domain name can serve many purposes on the Internet, but generally it allows people to find your homepage on the Internet and to send you email. Each domain name is assigned to a numerical IP (Internet Protocol) address by a hosting provider. Since most people tend to remember names better than numbers, the Internet (through the use of DNS servers) translates the domain name into its corresponding IP address.

Why do I need to register a domain name?

Most Internet providers offer you a directory for a web page, and usually an email address under their domain name. Most of the time, they look like this:, and...

In addition to having to explain the little squiggle mark (~ which is actually called a tilde) and explaining this long address to your less net-savvy customers, it can be very hard to fit an address like this on a business card. Plus it is less professional than having your own domain name, and not brandable at all. Registering a domain name for your business or organization is essential to your marketing efforts. A domain name gives your business a unique identity on the Internet.

How will I be able to tell if my desired domain name is already taken?

Before registering a domain name, you will have to perform an availability search to see if your desired domain name is in fact available. If the domain search request returns without a match, you will be able to register that domain name.

Garson Registration Services

Click here for searching and/or registering a domain name

What if my desired name is the same as a trademarked name?

Generally, if you've registered the name in good faith, it's not a name belonging to an internationally known company, and you can show that you have a legitimate reason to use that name, you will likely be able to keep that name. That may not be the case if it can be shown that you purchased the name for the express purpose of re-selling it to a company with a legitimate claim to the name.

Where can I learn more about trademark issues?

Here is a list of web sites that will be able to help you learn more about trademark and copyright issues:

Copyright Act (Canada)
US Patent And Trademark Office
Copyright Act (US)

How do I choose a good domain name?

Choose a name that reflects the intent and purpose of your web site or business. Try to keep it short and snappy, and say it out loud, as if you were telling someone at a party to visit your web page. Some domain names may look good on paper, but are confusing when you try to direct someone to it over the phone. Keep in mind the image that it conjures. Your domain name will be one of the ways people recognize or evaluate their choices of sites for their interests when they are searching via Yahoo or other search engines. When facing a large number of choices, the snappiest domain sometimes grabs the most attention.

What are the valid characters for a domain name?

The only valid characters for a domain name are letters, numbers and a hyphen "-". Other special characters like the underscore "_" or an exclamation mark "!" are NOT permitted.

Example: your (incorrect - no spaces allowed)
Example: (is correct)

A domain name can be up to 67 characters long -- including the 4 characters used to identify the Top Level Domain (.NET, .COM, .ORG, or .EDU). 

Why are some domain names "On Hold"?

When searching the WHOIS database, a domain name may sometimes show a status of "On Hold" if a.) payment for the domain is not current, b.) the domain name is involved in a trademark dispute, or c.) the domain is pending server activation.

Why can't I register for a domain that has already expired?

In some cases, domain names may be kept by the Registrars even after they have expired because a.) payment for the domain is not current, b.) the domain name is involved in a trademark dispute, or c.) the domain is pending server activation. As long as the Registrar holds a domain, you cannot register it. It will be necessary to contact the Registrar for more information about the domain. 


What is DNS?

DNS stands for Domain Name System. DNS is basically a piece of translation software. This System translates a domain name such as into IP address, allowing people to easily find the addresses of websites or other services. 

The DNS record consists data similar to the following example: 
Primary Nameserver: NS.SUN.COM 
Primary IP address:

What is domain parking?

Registrars require Primary and Secondary Name Servers and IP Numbers for every domain registered (DNS). Every domain name has to be linked to this information for it to be valid (i.e., each domain name needs to have an address attached to it). At the time of registration some people do not yet have Name Server information (which is generally provided by a Web Host), therefore our Registrar offers 'domain parking' (free of charge) on their servers. It is a convenient way to hold or 'Park' domain name(s) for an extended amount of time if you are not ready to use them.


I have registered a domain name, now what?

After you register your domain, you will probably want to find a web hosting company or Internet Service Provider to host a website for you, and/or to set up email. Some good areas to start are your local ISP, or choose one of the many free web-hosting sites available. Some people wish to only reserve their domain name for future use. In this case, you need not find an ISP or hosting company.

If you already have a website hosted by an ISP, you can easily set your domain to point to your ISP's DNS so that your existing website will appear when visitors go to your new domain name. If you already have a FREE website somewhere, chances are that your provider will not allow you to point the DNS settings to their server.

In this case, you can subscribe to a URL Forwarding service, free with or for an annual rate of $15.00 per domain with some other registration companies. This service, also known as Domain Forwarding or IP Forwarding, basically allows you to redirect visitors at your domain name ( to another web page address without having to setup a new web-hosting account for your domain name. 

Once I have a domain name secured, for how long may I keep it?

If there are no trademark disputes, your secured domain name will be yours for as long as you maintain the annual registration fees.

Why doesn't my domain show up in a WHOIS search?

If your domain is not showing up in the whois search and your domain was registered over 48 hours ago, you are probably still using the out of date Network Solutions WHOIS Server for whois queries. This server only lists those domains applied through Network Solutions. Please find a more complete web based whois server at or modify your UNIX based whois query to do a whois -h or whois to get the complete listing. Also remember that the WHOIS information for a domain can take up to 48 hours to propagate worldwide, so it may not be visible until then.

I already have a web site at Can I point my domain to it?

Of course! This is called URL Forwarding. This service is free with or some registration companies charge an annual fee of $15.00 for URL Forwarding, also known as Domain Forwarding or IP Forwarding. This service allows you to redirect traffic for your domain name ( to another web page address without having to setup a new web-hosting account.


What are the restrictions for registering domain names?

All TLD domain names must have a minimum of three characters and can have a maximum of 63 characters (letters, numbers or combination) excluding the top-level domain (.info, .biz, .name). 

The only symbol character domain names can include is a hyphen (-), although the domain name cannot start or end with one nor have consecutive hyphens. 

Common symbols such as asterisks (*), underscores (_) and exclamation points (!) are not permitted. This applies for all domain extensions.

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UUpdated: Wed 6/22/05 4:22 PM
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