Glossary: what do DNS, SSL and other "internet words" mean?

Setting up a website can be a pain and for many, the biggest barrier to getting online is simply not understanding the technical language. We get it. Not everyone speaks tech. That's why we've created a glossary that explains 35 of the most common words and concepts. With this glossary at your fingertips, you'll quickly understand the internet lingo and be speaking tech fluently in no time.

Glossary of technical terms on the Internet

Bandwidth: the amount of data that can be transferred to or from your website every second.

Payment gateway: a payment gateway is a service that allows users to approve credit card transactions for e-commerce. Payment gateways often have specific compliance requirements depending on your business type and transaction volume. Klarna and PayPal are examples of payment gateways.

Blog: a regularly updated website, webpage or part of a website. News is called posts; posts can be used to send traffic to your site and help with SEO.

CDN: Content Delivery Network - A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a network of servers distributed across multiple data centres around the world. It delivers web content, especially static files such as your websites' images and style sheets (CSS), to end users. This increases the speed of your website for users who are far away from your original web server.

Cloud hosting: cloud hosting, cloud hosting, saving data in the cloud, etc... are common terms that briefly mean that you have your data on a server or a set of servers on the internet that store and distribute content. This redundancy ensures the reliability of your website.

CMS: A content management system (CMS) is a software application with a user-friendly interface that you install on a host server to make it easier to manage a website. A CMS is especially good for people with no coding background to get started with a website. A popular CMS is WordPress.

CPU: short for Central Processing Unit. The Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the brain of your server or computer. It executes commands, makes decisions and performs input/output calculations.

Data centre: a data centre is a specialised facility that houses thousands of servers connected via a network to the internet.

Dedicated hosting: dedicated hosting allows you to rent an entire server for your own use instead of sharing it with other users or organisations.

DNS: The Domain Name System (DNS) translates domain names into numeric IP addresses.

Domain name: A domain name, such as, is used to identify the location of a specific web page.

Domain registrar: a domain registrar is a company accredited by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to register and manage domain names.

E-commerce: e-commerce is the practice of buying and selling products or services online.

FTP and SFTP: File Transfer Protocol (FTP) and Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) are used to transfer files between a computer and a server. FTP is especially useful for mass transfers, so you don't have to move hundreds of files individually.

HTML: HyperText Markup Language (HTML) is a computer language that tells your browser how to display a web page.

HTTP: HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is an application protocol for transferring files on the web. Think of it as the foundation of the internet.

HTTPS: HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is the use of HTTP over a secure connection.

IP address: every Internet-connected computer has at least one IP address, a unique sequence of numbers and/or letters, which serves two purposes: host or network interface identification (who it is) and location addressing (where it is).

Control Panel: the control panel is the nerve centre of your Admax account. Here you can add new domains, manage your website, create email addresses, install applications and manage behind-the-scenes settings.

Malware: Malicious software designed to damage, disable or take control of your computer, mobile device, website or network. Malware is often used to steal information or hold data for ransom.

Parked Domain: a parked domain is a domain name that has been registered but does not currently point to a website. Organisations often park domains for future use or to ensure that they are not registered by other buyers.

PHP: PHP is an acronym for Hypertext Preprocessor and is a programming language used to create dynamic websites. It is one of the most popular languages for web development.

RAID: RAID (Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks) is a technology used to protect data by storing it on multiple disks simultaneously. There are different RAID levels, with RAID 1 and RAID 5 being the most common for web hosting.

Reseller hosting: reseller hosting is a type of web hosting where you buy a certain amount of website space and bandwidth from a web hosting provider and then resell it to your own customers.

SSL: Secure Socket Layer (SSL) is a security technology used to encrypt data sent between a web server and a web browser. It is used to protect sensitive information such as credit card numbers or login details.

Subdomain: A subdomain is part of a domain, for example It's a great way to organise web content on your site and it can also be used to create separate sites within the same domain.

VPS: Virtual Private Server (VPS) is a type of hosting where a physical server is divided into several virtual servers. Each virtual server acts as its own physical server with its own memory, CPU and storage.

Web server: a web server is a computer or software that keeps your website available to users on the Internet. It receives calls from web browsers and sends back web content such as HTML, CSS and JavaScript.

Don't be afraid to ask if you don't understand

This glossary will take you a long way, and Admax support will be happy to help explain terms further if needed.