23 Helpful IT Terms

11-07-2016 at 10:37 am - Staff - 1 Comment

23 Helpful IT Terms

Let’s take a trip down memory lane for just a moment.

Visualize the last encounter you had with your IT guy. What do you remember from the conversation?

Most likely, only bits and pieces. Computer networking and information technology is chalk-full of jargon. And honestly, the majority of it is never actually explained.

Here at DMC Services, we go above and beyond “fixing.” We make it a point to walk you through the process so you know what to watch out for in the future.

We’re a fan of simplification and thought we’d take a few minutes to share 23 helpful IT terms that will help communication between you and your computer guru. Enjoy!

1. Access Provider

Also called a service provider, it’s the company that provides you with internet access or an online account with their system.

2. AFS

This is a type of file-sharing system that allows workstations to access files from a remote server.

3. Authentication

It’s the process of identifying an individual, based on a username and password.

4. Authorization

This is the process or granting or denying access to a network. Most security systems have a two-step process: authentication and authorization. Think of authorization as your account’s gatekeeper.

5. Browser

A web browser is used for retrieving information resources online. You may be familiar with Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari or Chrome.

6. CAS

Abbreviated for Central Authentication Service, it’s a sign-on protocol for the web. It permits users to access multiple applications, only inputying security credentials once.

7. Cloud Computing

This is one of our personal favorites. Cloud computing involves a network of remote services that store, manage, and process data. Rather than a computer or server, it’s hosted through the internet.


Standing for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, it allows computers to request and be assigned IP addresses and other network settings.

9. Download

This is a local copy of information found online. It’s often associated with music files, documents, and software.

10. DNS

A Domain Name System is how computers convert readable domain names and hostnames to numerical IP addresses. It’s like a phone book for the internet.

11. HTTP

Short for Hypertext Transfer Protocol, it’s the standard protocol that web browsers and the web itself uses.

12. IP address

Just as you have a unique thumbprint, an IP is a numerical address that corresponds to your computer on a network.

13. LAN

A Local Area Network is a small networked confined to a local area such as a home office.

14. MAPI

Short for Messaging Application Program Interface, it enables you to send email using an exchange server.

15. NetFile

This is a form of shared file space that works well for Windows and Mac.

16. Operating System

This is the holy grail of softwares installed on your computer. Some you may be familiar with might include Windows 10 or Mac OS X.

17. POP

Short for Post Office Protocol, it’s used to retrieve email from a mail server. When you read your mail, it’s delivered to your computer and no longer maintained not the server.

18. Search Engine

This is computer software, such as Google or Bing, used to search and access information on the internet.

19. SMTP

Simple Mail Transfer is used for sending emails between servers and ensures only specific users are allowed to send through the platform.

20. SSL

A Secure Sockets Layer encrypts communication between the email server and your computer so your password isn’t readable.

21. VPN

Also known as a Virtual Private Network, it permits remote systems to access the network similar to if they were physically located there. This system uses encryption to ensure only authorized users can access it.

22. WAN

A Wide Area Network covers a larger area. Your ISP provides you a connection to the WAN and the WAN connects you to the internet — similar to an adapter cable.

23. WebFile

WebFiles allow you to access your institutional file space (IFS) using a web browser.


Unfortunately, there aren’t enough hours in a day to lay out ever single IT term. But, these should at least be the most common.

If you have any questions or need assistance, give us a call at (405) 227–0306. We’re always here to lend a hand!

What are some terms you come across often? We’d love to hear your stories in the comments below.

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