Note: Those of you who used to use the old DOS system or who use Windows may wonder; why the / (forward slash) instead of \ (back slash)? In the beginning, all the computers that ran the Internet used an operating system called UNIX. UNIX uses the / instead of the \. So that became the standard for the Internet.
Now try it with www.CowboyFrank.net Now it works. WHY??
Note: domain names (the CowboyFrank.net part) are not case sensitive; however, the part to the right of the net or com or edu etc. is case sensitive if you are connecting to a UNIX computer.
Look closely at the address line. Notice how it now has the http:// in front of the domain name? Unless some setting is telling the browser not to show it, (such as "show friendly URLs") but believe me, it's there.
If you include the www, your web browser is doing part of the work for you and assumes you want a web document, then it proceedes to insert the http:// for you.
You read Internet addresses from the right to the left starting with what is called the root domain. The root domain is the com net edu gov uk au etc. The domain is the part just to the left of the root, CowboyFrank Microsoft AOL or what ever, and is separated from the root by a dot. Then you have the sub domain which comes just to the left of the domain and is separated by another dot, www, hometown members. In some cases you may have even more sub domain extensions to the left, each separated by a dot.
Here are some of the above combinations in examples.
www.CowboyFrank.net members.aol.com homepages.msn.com www.justdoit.ndirect.co.uk.
The part of the address to the right of the root domain is the location and name (within the particular computer you are connecting to) of the specific file you are retrieving . The file name and location is separated from the root domain with a forward slash /, and may include sub directories. The page you are now looking at is CowboyFrank.net/http.htm Another one is CowboyFrank.net/fire/index.htm
My domain name is CowboyFrank.net. It is not www.CowboyFrank.net.
When you type in a URL, or address, the combinations of root domain, domain, and sub domain, are pointing to a specific computer somewhere in the world. It's actually a bit more complicated than that but this will suffice for our discussion. If you have included a sub domain, you may be pointing to a different computer than if you only use the domain.
In some cases, as in my case, CowboyFrank.net and www.CowboyFrank.net both point to the same place. In other cases they point to different computers.
In the following examples, webtv.net is the domain, and community-2 is a sub domain. If you type in
you will get a different page from a different computer than if you type in
Most web servers are configured in such a way that if you ask for an http type file, and don't specify a specific file name, the server will automatically send you one called index.htm, or home.htm, or any of several variations thereof. So if you type in http://CowboyFrank.net the server knows you are requesting a HyperText document and you will get the file located at http://CowboyFrank.net/index.htm
If the sub domain of www doesn't happen to be the same computer as the primary domain, then you either won't get a document at all or you may get a different one than expected.