The Domain Name System has been in existence since 1983. Though not commercially available until 1985, the domain names idea would lay the groundwork for what would grow into and become the global internet.

DomainTools helps us research and monitor the now over 200 million registered domain names.

Domain Names in History

The first commercial Internet domain name,, was registered on 15 March 1985 by Symbolics Inc., a computer systems firm in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Seven years later, in 1992, only 15,000 .com (top-level) domains were registered. Twenty years later (in 2012), the “.com” count is over 100 million.

Google registered their domain September 15, 1997. Microsoft in May of ‘91. Apple makes the “First 100 .com domains registered” list for February 1987.,,, and even were all registered in 1995 (a busy year in fact).

If you were alive and alert during the early and mid 1990s, don’t kick yourself too much (“” is estimated to sell this year for ~$10 million).

Current Domain Space

Though it would have been nice to get on the bandwagon back before the turn of the century, it might not be too late to register your dream domain.

With, one can find out if their new idea, company name, church, or organization can obtain their desired domain name. If it’s taken already, DomainTools helps answer questions like, “Who owns that domain? When did they register it? When does it expire?“.

With a free domain monitor (up to 100 domains), if a domain ever expires and is not renewed, you’ll be sure to know.

Officially, then, the top reasons why I keep going back and think you could benefit from knowing about DomainTools, too:

  1. Whois Lookup – “Who owns that domain? When does it expire?”
  2. Domain Monitoring – “Okay, it expires in 4 months…I’ll monitor it and if it doesn’t renew, I can maybe pick it up…”
  3. Mobile App (iOS/Android) – “How nice to have these resources on the go.”
All is not lost

So our 1-word “.com” dream domain might not be available, but even “” was already registered (in 1997) before the social network existed (2004). Because was already taken, the Echo Bay Technology group had to go with their second choice: Alternatively, Groupon simply made up a new word.

Whether you’re creating new words (Klout, Hipmunk, Skype), combining concepts (Wikipedia, Groupon, Linkedin) or can raise funds to buy your domain, let the research and monitoring begin.

Who knows what new words have yet to be added to the dictionary.