URLs- Pointers to the Internet
Now it is time to include links to information available on the
Internet, using the World Wide Web's addressing scheme.
After this lesson you will be able to:
- Identify the function of Uniform Resource Locators (URLs).
- Recognize the structure of a URL
Note: For this lesson, you will not need your HTML text file.
This is another low effort lesson!
What is a URL?
Resource Locator (URL) is what the WWW uses to find the location
of files and documents from computers on the Internet. On your WWW browser
screen, the URL for this document is typically displayed in the upper part of
the Web browser window. The URL includes:
- an identifier for the type of Internet server;
- an Internet address; and
- a file path to the particular item of interest.
The URL is what you will need to build a link from the web page that
you are creating to connect to some other piece of information
available on the Internet. For more information, see
Curling Up To URLs (v0.2)
How are URLs Structured?
The structure of a URL is:
The "type" indicates the type of Internet server being
- A World Wide Web server that provides World Wide Web documents. "HTTP"
stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol.
- an Internet Gopher site, menu driven directories of files and
- An anonymous File Transfer Protocol (FTP) site, archives of
- Initiates a Telnet session to log on remotely to another
computer. When selected, your WWW browser will launch a Telnet external program
and connect to the specified site.
- Wide Area Indexed Server- a site to search a collection of
subject oriented documents by keywords
- A file on your local computer system (hard drive, floppy, local
The type is always followed by "://" and the Internet adress
of a remote computer. This is in the structure of:
If the URL is to the main level of this host (its "home page"), then the URL is
terminated with a slash "/". If you are linking to a
sub-directory or a file, you must also add the exact path to that
item using the slash character to indicate the entire file path.
Note: For most web servers spelling does count! So does capitalization!
File names on unix computers are case senstive, meaning that a file
is a different file than
Experimenting With URLs
Note that URLs can link to any site, directory, subdirectory,
text file, image, digital movie, or sound file on any Internet site
that is set up for public access. From the list below, look at the
URL and then see what happens when you select an anchor tag
that uses the URL:
MCLI's WWW server
Another WWW document from MCLI
A graphic file from MCLI
A sound file from MCLI
Library of Congress Gopher.
Sub directory of Library of Congress Gopher
File on Library of Congress Gopher
Multimedia Developers FTP site
Sub directory of Multimedia Developers FTP site
Text file from Multimedia Developers FTP site
Download a Macintosh program from Multimedia Developers FTP site
Download a DOS application from Multimedia Developers FTP site
- What purpose do URLs serve for the World Wide Web?
- Where are URLs found on a WWW screen?
- What is the basic structure of an URL?
- What are some different servers that can be accessed using URLs?
Find some sites on the Internet that intrigue you. For each one,
record its name and its URL displayed near the top of your browser
window. (or better yet-- learn how to use the
Bookmark or Hotlist features of your browser). You will use this list later to add anchor links from your
own WWW pages to these sites that you found. Or better yet,
investigate the Bookmarks or Hotlist features of your Web
You will use URLs in anchor tags to create links to file
Internet for your Volcanoes! page.
Writing HTML Lesson 8b: URLs- Pointers to the Internet
Maricopa Center for Learning & Instruction (MCLI)
Maricopa County Community College District, Arizona
The Internet Connection at MCLI is
Comments to firstname.lastname@example.org