Customized URLs in Windows

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Before you start

Objectives: learn how to access different sources using different types of URLs.

Prerequisites: no prerequisites.

Key terms: path, url, http, ftp, protocol, port


Web Servers

The default port for most Web servers on the Internet is port 80. Some sites on the internet can be configured to use some other port. Also, if we install IIS on our Windows system, we can configure different ports for different web sites on our computer. To access a custom port on a web server we will use the following syntax:

http://sitename:port

For example, to access port 8080 on utilizewindows.com, we would type in our browser:

http://www.utilizewindows.com:8080

Secure Sites

Sometimes we will come across sites that are secured so that others can not read sensitive data that users send to servers. For example, web sites can be protected using SSL or Secure Socket Layer to encrypt information. To access a secure web site using SSL we will use the following syntax:

https://sitename

The example would be:

https://www.utilizewindows.com

HTTPS indicates a secure protocol that is used to access particular web site.

Shared Printers

If we want to connect to printers on our private network over the internet, we would use the following syntax:

http://servername/printers

For example, if we have a shared printer on utilizewindows.local server, we could access it over Internet using:

http://utilizewindows.local/printers

Shared Files

To gain access to files on our private network or intranet over the Internet, we would use the following syntax:

http://servername/sharename/filename

So for example, to access “All-Articles-On-UtilizeWindows.pdf”, we would type in something like this:

http://utilizewindows.local/articles/All-Articles-On-UtilizeWindows.pdf

This is an easy way to access documents if we have granted access to our private network from the Internet.

FTP

We can also use FTP protocol to access files on remote servers. To access an FTP server we can use the following syntax:

ftp://sitename

For example, we could use URL:

ftp://ftp.utilizewindows.com

This is going to allow us to access FTP services on that particular server. Although FTP servers often provide anonymous access, often times we need an username and a password to access FTP services. In that case we would can use the following syntax:

ftp://username:password@sitename

For example:

ftp://KVerson: Zg1Cro2@ftp.utilizewindows.com

Remember

To access a custom port on a web server we will use the following syntax: http://sitename:port. To access a secure web site using SSL we will use the following syntax: https://sitename. To access an FTP server we can use the following syntax: ftp://sitename. Often times we need an username and a password to access FTP services. In that case we would can use the following syntax: ftp://username:password@sitename.