It's big, and 'still' growing..

It's big and 'growing'

The new host count, a measure of the number of computers directly connected to the network and accessible via a unique address, is 6.6 million. Thus the network’s strong exponential growth is continuing, but at a slightly decreased rate since the previous survey.

The base survey was carried out by Mark Lottor of Network Wizards. His aim was to discover every announced host on the Internet by doing a complete search of the Domain Name System (DNS). The survey is usually carried out twice a year. John Quarter of Texas Internet Consulting, publisher of Matrix News, who further analyzed the three letter Internet domains, such as .com and .edu, to try to determine worldwide use of them.

The DNS is an inter-network system used to keep order in computer addresses and help packets route to their destination by converting computer host names, such as infohighway.co.uk, into the numeric address that the routing system uses. The whole system is usually transparent to a standard Internet user.

"Worldwide Usage" The commercial .com domain is found in 54 countries, the .net domain used by network service providers is in use in 57 countries, while 27 countries and most UN agencies make use of the .org organization domain, and 16 countries use the .edu educational domain.

Among significant use of these non country-specific domains outside the United States, Canada has 1142 .com domains encompassing 30,484 host computers. In the United Kingdom 13,260 of the computers connected to the network use one of 241 .com domains. The 15 new countries connected to the network and counted for the first time are Antigua & Barbuda, Cayman Islands, Dominican Republic, Nepal, Guam, United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Barbados, Ghana, Monaco, Macedonia, Anguilla, Cote d’Ivoire, Lebanon, and Kenya.

While strong growth was reported in many countries, Japan and Germany ranked top amongst industrialized nations, both showing increases of 40% and 41% respectively. The new top ten number of Internet hosts by country are as listed in the table below.

When classified by region, most areas managed an average 40% growth rate. The distribution of Internet hosts by region is shown in the table below.

In domain terms, the commercial .com domain remains the biggest on the Internet and the fastest growing in numbers of new hosts. The top ten domain names, numbers of domains and six month growth figures are listed in the table below.

As with any survey conducted about the Internet, the report team warns that because of its complexity — it is actually 50,000 individual networks all linked together — it is impossible to ever come up with a “true and exact count.”

Full results encompassing all countries can be found on the Internet Society’s World Wide Web server at http://www.isoc.org/ or in the zone directory of ftp.isoc.org.