name resolution

Definition of name resolution in The Network Encyclopedia.

What is Name Resolution?

The process of resolving the name of a computer on a network into its network address. Name resolution is an important part of network communication because the logical names of hosts on the network must be resolved into their network addresses before communication can take place.

TCP/IP networks running Microsoft Windows operating systems support two name resolution methods:

  • NetBIOS name resolution to resolve NetBIOS names into IP addresses. This is performed by using broadcasts or by querying a Windows Internet Name Service (WINS) server.
  • Host name resolution to resolve fully qualified domain names (FQDNs) into IP addresses. This is performed by using a local Hosts file or by querying a Domain Name System (DNS) server.

In addition, once the name of a host is resolved into its IP address, the TCP/IP protocol called Address Resolution Protocol (ARP) resolves the host’s IP address into its physical layer or MAC address. Once the name resolution process is complete, you can place frames on the network with appropriate destination MAC addresses so that they can be received by their destination host.

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