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Smallsite Design

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Setup: Glossary

The meanings for some terms used on this subsite.

addon domain
A domain that is not the one used to create the hosting account. It is created like a subdomain of the account domain (it is one and can be accessed like that), but it is mainly to be accessed directly using the domain. They require the hosting to use Server Name Indication (SNI) that allows addons, though browsers from prior to 2013 do not work with it, and is not available for hosting packages that allow only one site.
cookie
Small file deposited through a reader's browser that supposedly provides the supplying site information with which to supply a so-called better user experience. While they may do that, they also enable the site visited to track visitor activity over time. Smallsite Design does not leave cookies or other files on reader devices when accessing public pages, preferring to provide proper navigation and explicit discovery indicators instead. Cookie are used for users performing tasks for the site owner, but only for maintaining their sessions without tracking.
cPanel
Popular site hosting management software provided by many site hosting providers. Not to be confused with software like Smallsite Design that manages the content and structure of a site itself.
DNS
Domain Name System: Series of computers that translate domain names into the numeric IP address that computers actually use to specify an internet destination site. Each server is also known as a nameserver.
domain
The universally unique, named location of a site on the internet, such as smallsite-design.com. Smallsite Design can be installed into a domain or subdomain.
encryption
Means of encoding information so that it cannot be read by those without a special decryption key. For internet traffic, an SSL certificate provides that key.
forwarder
An email alias that redirects incoming emails to a real account or external email, or immediately deletes them, the latter being required to make the noreply account ignore incoming emails. Extremely useful for making up disposable email addresses for signing up for online services.
fragment
Optional last part of a URL preceded by #, as in https://domain.com/#section1, that is the location within a page to jump to.
intermediate certificate
Intermediary SSL certificate in a chain of trust providing widespread internet traffic encryption. cPanel uses Let's encrypt, which has its own intermediate SSL certificate, to allow every site to have a free site certificate. Let's Encrypt uses its own DNS servers to prevent eaves-dropping from possibly compromised root certificate authorities.
IP address
Internet Protocol: The numeric addresses that computers on a network are identified by, translated by internet DNS servers from the domain names typed into a browser. Until recently, these addresses were using IPv4, represented like 14.5.124.204, but since no new ones of those are available, IPv6, represented like FE80::0439:B3AC:F81E:6735, which provides many times more will become more prevalent.
nameserver
DNS server.
noreply email
Email account that disposes of any incoming emails immediately. Only used for sending emails. It is a normal email account that has a forwarder that does the deletion (preferred), or is disabled for incoming emails.
path
Optional part of a URL specifying the location with a domain, as in https://domain.com/art/a-profile/. If not supplied, usually the home page is shown.
PHP
PHP: Hypertext Processor: The server programming language used for Smallsite Design. It includes a lot of functionality by including many third-party packages, bypassing the need for other software to be installed separately. It is usually kept up to date by the hosting provider.
plugin
Unit of code that provides extra functionality for a site. They are often provided by a third-party separate from the site software provider. They can be problematic because they have privileged access to the site builder technology and bugs in them can provide nefarious access to a site. They also require a site owner to make sure they are up to date. Smallsite Design does not support plugins, preferring to use simple links to separate sites, such as for commerce or comments, as there is then no inherent risk of site corruption.
port
Optional part of a URL specifying a particular communication channel at the domain, as in https://domain.com:443, and is usually associated with a particular scheme, as port 443 is with https.
primary domain
The domain used for the hosting account, as opposed to addon domains.
privacy
Smallsite Design is designed around reader privacy, so that it does not leave a cookie or other files are used on reader devices. Images and other files can only come from the site, rather than sourced from third-party sites so avoiding readers being tracked by those sites. There is no provision for plugins for the same reason.
protocol
See scheme.
Punycode
Special format for domain name parts containing Unicode to get around the limitations of the DNS and cPanel. Converted parts start with xn-- followed by any plain ASCII characters in the part after that, then a - and the Unicode characters encoded in ASCII. Browsers can handle either format, but cPanel requires the Punycode version when specifying domain or subdomain names that contain Unicode characters. For root folder names, use representative names in ASCII.
query
Optional part of a URL that provides values to the target page, as in https://domain.com/?name1=value1&name2=value2. Must appear before any fragment.
root certificate
Master SSL certificate that validates the intermediate certificates and site certificates, enabling widespread internet traffic encryption.
scheme
First part of URL specifying how the information on the target site is managed. For almost all sites it is now https which ensures information is securely transmitted. Also known as protocol.
site
Complete set of pages for a domain or subdomain.
site certificate
SSL certificate providing encryption for a site's internet traffic. Now provided for free by cPanel site hosting software.
site hosting
Providing the hardware and software for supporting an internet site for a fee, usually much more cost- and time-effectively than maintaining one's own.
SSL certificate
Special file providing information to enable encryption of data over the internet. They form part of a chain of trust traced back to a root certificate owned by top-level providers. They are mainly free now since being provided as part of cPanel. A URL for a site using a certificate will have a scheme of https rather than http.
subdomain
Independent site of a domain, usually prefixing a domain name, like help.smallsite-design.com. Not to be confused with a subsite. Smallsite Design can be installed into a subdomain.
tracking
Process by which a site and their advertising or login partners track users across the internet, usually by embedded code or files sourced from a third-party site. Smallsite Design does not allow such embedding. Files must be uploaded to a Smallsite Design site to be viewed, though they can be individually enabled for embedding on other sites, which Smallsite Design does not track.
URL
Uniform Resource Locator. The path to a web page or other resource on the internet, with parts as scheme://subdomain.domain/path/query#fragment. There can be more than one subdomain.
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