Solutions maintains the Internet Number Registry and manages the domain
root server for the entire internet... From experience, we have learned
the importance of maintaining up-to-date zone files and making them
available for propagation throughout the world.
- NSI Proposal to NSF Solicitation, October 19, 1992.
Network Solutions Inc. (NSI)
was the first public registrar of domain
names, and still manages the central domain name system database.
From 1993 to 1999, Network Solutions was under contract with the National
Science Foundation to be the sole provider of domain name registrations
in the three public top-level domains, ".com", ".net" and ".org". The
NSF paid NSI for all registrations until 1995, and then allowed them
to charge users when the number of registrations began to skyrocket.
6th, 1998, NSI registered its three millionth domain name, lizzybee.com,
for Bozart Toys, Inc. A year later it had registered more than six million
In 1998, at the request of the newly formed ICANN,
which wanted to open the registration process to competition, NSI started developing
software and a central database to support multiple registrars of domain names.
The first test was conducted in April, 1999, when five new registrars were
accredited by ICANN to register public domains for a two month test period.
Several dozen registrars were accredited
by the end of the year, although each still has to pay NSI a fee each year
for maintenance of the central database.
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration efforts to
privatize the domain name management system are described here.
the technical computer services needed to manage the domain name files. They
store the files, make them accessible through proper commands, and update them
InterNIC. During the period from 1993 to 1999, Network Solutions administered
Historical documents related to the creation of the InterNIC can be found at
the following addresses: