. de is the country code top -level domain (ccTLD ) of the Federal Republic of Germany. It was delegated November 5, 1986 at IANA and initially and later managed by the University of Dortmund, by DENIC headquartered in Frankfurt am Main. With more than 15 million registered domains. De the most popular country code top -level domain before. Uk and. Cn. Their distribution is surpassed only by the. Com.


On November 5, 1986, entered 3166 as a top -level domain for Germany in the root zone of the Domain Name System by the IANA. De ISO. Since that day, de domains can be registered.. In March 1988, recorded at this time at the University of Dortmund is settled Network Information Center a total of six de domains: . Dbp.de, rmi.de, telenet.de, uka.de, uni- dortmund.de and uni- paderborn.de.

Since 1997, the management of all. De domains is in the hands of DENIC, which was a year ago launched. In the cooperative numerous web hosts have joined, which in turn act as an accredited registrar for. De domains. In addition, DENIC provides under the name DENICdirect even awarding. De domains to. However, this does not include web space or e- mail addresses or other services.


With 15.6 million registered domains (Oct. 2013) is. De is the most commonly used country code top -level domain, uk before. , And. Cn. In consideration of all addresses - ie both country-specific and generic domains - is de second place behind the top-level domain com.. . The mark of 15 million. De domains was exceeded in April 2012, since June 2006, there are more than 10 million addresses. The first million was achieved on 5 October 1999.

DENIC published annual statistics on the regional distribution of. De domains. In Germany, particularly the metropolitan areas of Berlin, Munich and Hamburg stand out through most domains per head. However, this statistic is distorted by the seat of the great web hosting provider: So the district of Starnberg is, for example, on the second place in the regions with the highest per capita domains, since the company united-domains is located here. As with most country-code top -level domains can be registered with. En domains of persons from abroad. For registrations from abroad United Kingdom, Switzerland and the United States are located on the first places.


Overall, a. De domain between one and 63 characters may be long. For a long time had to be at least three characters long domain names, which changed with the liberalization of the criteria in 2008. In addition to alphanumeric characters all German umlauts, sharp s and the various characters from other languages ​​can be used according to the official list of DENIC. These are credited to their Punycode notation on the maximum allowable length. Hyphens are also possible, however, neither the first or last, still in third and fourth place of the domain.

A residence or an establishment in Germany are not required to register a. De domain. Only the administrative contact must be registered under a domestic address, provided that the holder is a foreigner. DENIC requires holders, and administrative and technical contact in any case, a full postal address, to specify a mailbox is not sufficient. Furthermore, at least two name servers must be named for domain delegation already during login, the reply authoritatively for the respective. De domain. Alternatively offers DENIC under the name NSentry to take for a domain up to five A or MX records directly into the. De zone.

Due to the requirements of a domestic point of contact and the high prevalence of. De domains, many companies offer a trustee for. De domains, which is expressly prohibited by DENIC. However, experts do not recommend the use of a trustee because of legal difficulties in the event of a dispute from.

Period of time

A. De domain is registered in principle unlimited, the fees are usually at least a year in advance due. This is true both for the award by DENICdirect as well as an accredited registrar. If the registrar managing a. De domain on, without deleting them, it is set in the so-called transit state. This allows the owner to transfer it to another domain name registrar or managed by DENICdirect. Alternatively, even then will cause the deletion.

Since December 3, 2013, a de - domain after deletion not be immediately logged back by a third party. Was a so-called Redemption Grace Period (RGP ) is introduced, as they have long used in other top- level domains such as com. is. It gives the holder a 30-day cooling-off period during which the cancellation may be withdrawn. Thus, the accidental deletion of a. De domain to be prevented.


De domains are connected by a so-called AuthCode. Protected from unauthorized transfers. Owner or administrative contact must authorize an address by entering a predetermined character string that a domain can be changed to a new registrar. The same applies to the change in the holder itself, the procedure is considered standard in the industry and has been tested and implemented from 2008 final in February 2010 by DENIC.

In addition, the top-level domain. De since the spring of 2010 supports the DNSSEC process. This is to ensure that the authenticity and data integrity of the Domain Name System is guaranteed and queries a client as well as the response from the DNS server can not be manipulated. After a test run in July 2009 DNSSEC was first launched in January 2010. De in operation. For DENIC was supported by the Association of the German Internet Industry ( eco) and the Federal Office for Security in Information Technology.


  • Kurt Biedenkopf called during his tenure as Prime Minister of the Free State of Saxony, DENIC should the domain kurt- biedenkopf.de block indefinitely, so they can not be registered by third parties. Biedenkopf wanted the domain name will not even use. The Higher Regional Court Dresden refused to bring legal proceedings in November 2000, after which Biedenkopf went before the Federal Court. However, this also followed the reasoning of the DENIC, a lock of that domain would only be unreasonable, unless a registration would always represent in the future by any owner in sight a violation of applicable law.
  • In August 2004,. De domain was transferred from eBay to a new owner without the consent of the auction house was present. A customer of web host Inter Genia put a KK - request for change of owner, which was performed because of a lack of rejection of the registrar Tucows. In the course of DENIC was criticized to have taken adequate security measures, although ebay.de was restored a few hours after transfer to the correct owner. eBay itself looked as opposed first announcements of legal action against the initiator of the KK - application.
  • DENIC forgave domains initially only with a length of at least three characters. Exceptions to this rule were ix.de, db.de and hq.de and the address bb.de. In 2008, Volkswagen AG fought successfully against the decision of DENIC, not being allowed to register vw.de. Subsequently, the selection criteria have been amended so that both unary and pure numeric domains were allowed. The new domains were awarded on 23 October 2009 within a few minutes. The most valuable two-digit domain tv.de secured Key-Systems.
  • 2010 had to decide a suit against the DENIC the Landgericht Frankfurt am Main. This was triggered by the loss of gewinn.de, the previous owner wanted to fight back legally due to the high value of the domain against. Ultimately, the court judge but the owner was liable for errors of his domain name registrar itself. A (joint) responsibility DENIC were excluded. Furthermore, it was explicitly stated that information in the Whois database about the owner of a. De domain need not necessarily be binding, but may vary the actual ownership also.
  • The Free State of Bavaria processed from 2008 also against the DENIC after Panamanian company had registered numerous. De domains with respect to the districts of Lower Franconia, Middle Franconia and the district of Upper Franconia and Regierungsbezirk Oberpfalz. From the contracting authority in accordance with the principles of liability for interference cancellation of the addresses affected demands, which was initially rejected. However, in June 2010, the Federal Court affirmed the claims of the State and ordered the DENIC expanded testing on duty, according to the. De domains must be deleted immediately with clear legal violations.