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Glossary Term B - Web Hosting Glossary

B Channel
Bearer Channel. This term is used by the telephone companies to denote a channel configured to handle voice data. A typical ISDN line has two B channels and one data channel. It is a 64 Kbps communication channel in ISDN.

Backbone
A high-speed line or series of connections that form a major pathway within a network. The term is relative as a backbone in a small network will likely be much smaller than many non-backbone lines in a large network. A high-speed line or series of connections that forms a major pathway within a network.

Background
A background is a default color or image for a page. A Web author may add a Netscape extension to an HTML file to create a background, or a browser may display Web pages using a browser-defined default color and override any background previously defined.

Backlinks
Referring to the number of unique web sites that are linking to your web site or home page.

Backorder
A current or past due customer order (or line item) that cannot be shipped due to lack of inventory availability. Customer agreements govern how backorders are handled (ship when available, ship whole order only, cancel, etc.).

Backups
Web hosts back up data on their servers. Many host packages offer backups every 24 hours. This is supposed to prevent the loss of data should something happen to the server.

Bandwidth
The range of frequencies, usually expressed in Kilobits per second, that can pass over a given data transmission channel within a frame relay network. The bandwidth determines the rate at which information can be sent through a channel - the greater the bandwidth, the more information that can be sent in a given amount of time. Usually measured in bits-per-second. A full page of English text is about 16,000 bits. A 56Kbs modem can easily move 16,000 bits in less than one second.

Baud
Unit of signaling speed equal to the number of discrete signal elements transmitted per second. Baud is synonymous with bits per second (bps). In common usage the baud rate of a modem is how many bits it can send or receive per second. Technically, baud is the number of times per second that the carrier signal shifts value - for example a 1200 bit-per-second modem actually runs at 300 baud, but it moves 4 bits per baud (4 x 300 = 1200 bits per second).

BBS - Bulletin Board System
A computerized meeting and announcement system that allows people to carry on discussions, upload and download files, and make announcements without the people being connected to the computer at the same time. There are many thousands (millions?) of BBS's around the world, most are very small, running on a single IBM clone PC with 1 or 2 phone lines. Some are very large and the line between a BBS and a system like CompuServe gets crossed at some point, but it is not clearly drawn.

Binary
There are two meanings for binary in common computer usage. The first is the name of the number system in which there are only zeros and ones. This is important to computers because all computer data is ultimately a series of zeros and ones, and thus can be represented by binary numbers. The second is an offshoot of the first; data that is not meant to be intepreted through a common character set (like ASCII) is typically referred to as binary data. Pure binary data is typically eight bit data, and transferring a binary file through ASCII channels without prior modification will result in corruption and loss of data. Binary data can be turned into ASCII data via uucoding or bcoding.

Binary Mode
A common FTP client mode used to transfer binary files such as multimedia files, executables and other data files. It is not suitable for transferring normal text files.

BIND - Berkeley Internet Name Domain
An implementation of the Domain Name System protocols, including: A Domain Name System server (NameID). A Domain Name System resolver library, tools for verifying the proper operation of the DNS server. The B.I.N.D. D.N.S. Server is used on the vast majority of name serving machines on the Internet, providing a robust and stable architecture on top of which an organization's naming architecture can be built.

Binhex - BINary HEXadecimal
A method for converting non-text files into ASCII files. This is required because Internet email can only handle ASCII files.

Bit
A unit of measurement of information (from Binary + digIT); the amount of information in a system having two equiprobable states; "there are 8 bits in a byte"

Bit Rate
Bit rate is the capacity characteristic of digital signals as defined by the number of bits (or bytes) per second that a channel will support. For example, a transmission facility that can support information exchange at the rate of I megabit per second (1 Mbps or 1,000,000 bits per second) delivers the same quantity of information, i.e., throughput, as a 1 kilobit per second (kbps or 1,000 bits per second) facility, but, in only 1/1000 of the time.

BITNET - Because It's Time NETwork
Because It's There NETwork - A network of educational sites separate from the Internet, but e-mail is freely exchanged between BITNET and the Internet. Listservs, the most popular form of e-mail discussion groups, originated on BITNET. BITNET machines are usually mainframes running the VMS operating system, and the network is probably the only international network that is shrinking.

Blockquote
A large quote in a document is usually inserted as a separate segment of text, called a blockquote, rather than given inline with quotation marks around it. A blockquote is left-indented with respect to the enclosing text and has whitespace before and after it. The blockquote may also be in a different typeface from the enclosing text. For COMP1900, a standard blockquote is 0.5cm left-indented with respect to the text in which it is embedded; has 6pt of spacing before and after; and is in italics.

Body - Body Tags
This is a top level HTML document structure which encapsulates and definesall content (text and images) in the document structure; all document content should be contained within the BODY element.

Bookmark
When you "bookmark" a page, you tell your Web browser to remember that page's address (URL), so that you can go back to it easily, without having to type in the URL again. Bookmarks are called "favorites" in Microsoft Internet Explorer. It keeps your place, much like a bookmark in a book does. Most browsers have an easy method of saving the URL to create a bookmark.

Bot
Short for robot, a program designed to search the Internet looking for information. Bots can also refer to any short piece of programming that performs a specific function.

BRI - Basic Rate Interface
The Basic Rate Interface (BRI) is the standard Integrated-Services Digital Network (ISDN) Basic Rate Interface operates over two 64 kbps B channels (which may be used to carry voice, circuit-switched data, or packet data) and one 16 kbps D channel (which can carry signaling and packet information). Commonly referred to as "2B + D." This service is provided from a Digital Line Unit (DLU).

Bridge
A device that supports LAN-to-LAN communications. Bridges may be equipped to provide frame relay support to the LAN devices they serve. A frame-relay-capable bridge encapsulates LAN frames in frame relay frames and feeds those frame relay frames to a frame relay switch for transmission across the network. A frame-relay-capable bridge also receives frame relay frames from the network, strips the frame relay frame off each LAN frame, and passes the LAN frame on to the end device. Bridges are generally used to connect local area network (LAN) segments to other LAN segments or to a wide area network (WAN). They route traffic on the Level 2 LAN protocol (e.g., the Media Access Control address), which occupies the lower sub layer of the LAN OSI data link layer.

Broadcast
To send a message to all possible recipients. Broadcast can be implemented as a repeated send, but is more efficiently implemented by using spanning trees and having each node in the tree propagate the message to its descendants.

Browser
An application used to access the World Wide Web (which you're using right now). Browsers can also be text-based, but most include text and graphics. The two most popular browsers are Microsoft Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator. Browsers allow users to view sites by interpreting HTML code and rendering the code as a page like this.

Bulk Email
A large amount of something that is not divided into separate packages. Many stores allow shoppers to scoop out the amount they need of bulk goods like popcorn or potato chips. This reduces waste and packaging. On the web people utilize Bulk Email to send the same message to many people or email addresses at once. This trick is often abused by spammers.

Burstable
Refers to the highest or maximum data transfer rate available on a given network. A method of data transfer in which information is collected and sent as a large unit in one high-speed transmission. LAN traffic is usually considered bursty traffic because it has short intervals of intense activity with lulls between.

 
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