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Today’s tutorial is not really anything to write home about, but it could save you a bit of time.

And if not save you time, then you’ll certainly learn how to check the availability of a domain name using a method other than a web browser.

If you check as many domains during a given day as I do, then you’ll certainly love theses two methods.

I’ll share with you how to use Mac’s Terminal first. For Mac users, it’s quite simple to check a domain’s availability. Simply open Terminal and type “whois domain”.

Be sure to replace “domain” with the domain you’re wanting to check the availability of as shown below in Terminal image when checking the availability of alvinbrown.in.

Hit the “Enter” key, and the domain’s availability will be displayed as shown in the image below. The information displayed is in regards to the registry information.

Look at the very bottom of the image and notice the words “NOT FOUND”. This means the domain is not registered and available for hand registration.

If the domain were registered, then you’ll likely see a page like the following:

Of course you’ll have to scroll down the page a bit just after the registry information. What you’re in search of are three things to note in and about the image above:

  • Updated Dated
  • Creation Date
  • Registrar Registration Expiration Date

When a domain has these three things associated with it, then the domain is said to be registered and not available.

And there you have it!  It’s just that simple checking the availability of a domain name using Mac’s Terminal application.

Next up is checking the availability of a domain name using a Windows machine. Because I’m not a Windows users, I won’t dive into the nitty gritty details.

Nevertheless, Whois makes it quite easy for Microsoft users to check the domain availability using Windows Sysinternals.

Simply download this easy-to-use tool and ensure it’s executed within the C:\Windows\ directory.

Just as Mac users did with the Terminal application, type “whois domain” into the Windows Sysinterals command line interface.

Don’t forget to replace “domain” with the exact domain you’re wanting to check the availability of.

And believe it or not, but that’s it! Checking the availability of a domain name has never been made easier, with the exception of using a web browser of course. 😉

In closing, I’ve created a quick step-by-step tutorial to show and share how to use whois for both Mac and Windows users to check the availability of a domain name.

Let me know if you have any questions about command line interfaces for Mac or Windows, or general domain name questions/comments. That’s all for now!

Meet Alvin Brown

He's an experienced and passionate serial entrepreneur, founder and publisher of Kickstart Commerce. Alvin possesses a great love for startups dominating their market using profitable digital strategies for greater commerce.

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