Web Services Naming Policy
Approving authority Pro Vice Chancellor (Information Services)
Approval date 2 March 2005
Advisor Manager, Web and Content Management Services | Information Services
Richard.Powell@griffith.edu.au | (07) 373 53839
Next scheduled review 2012
Document URL http://policies.griffith.edu.au/pdf/Web Services Naming Policy.pdf
TRIM document 2005/0010346
Description Internet or web services enable the transfer of data and information from a
server to a web client application such as a web browser for web sites or an
email application that links to a mail server. Each individual service has an
internet address or name which can also be given an "alias" in order to
provide additional meaning or other benefits. Some examples at Griffith
www.griffith.edu.au for the University's main web site;
www2.griffith.edu.au for the University's Learning@Griffith service; and
studentemail.griffith.edu.au for the University's email services for
Internet aliases are generally recognised in the form of a URL or CNAME.
The complete name can also include a sub-directory that refers to a specific
component of the service. For example: www.griffith.edu.au/ins or
This policy supports the branding and overall communications strategies
within Griffith University by setting down standards and processes for the
selection and configuration of internet service names used to publish and
access the University's Web or Internet Services. The policy addresses:
Service and sub-domain prefixes for the griffith.edu.au domain (and the
legacy domain gu.edu.au);
Redirections of service names to alternative addresses; and
This policy establishes the process for approval of new aliases, service
redirections and top level directories. The policy is intended to remain flexible
enough to allow existing and new concepts of Internet-based services and
interactions to be introduced without unnecessary delays.
This policy both complies with and extends the University's Web Collection
Web Services Naming Policy - Schedule 1: Operational Guidelines & Procedures
Web Collection Management Policy
Web Collection Management Policy - Schedule 1: Roles and Responsibilities in Managing Web Content
Web Collection Management Policy - Schedule 2: Expiration of Web Records and Content
Publishing University Web Addresses Policy
[Definitions] [Scope] [Policy]
1 Web Services Naming Policy
1.1 Griffith University's internet domain consists of all internet services available through the
domains and sub-domains of griffith.edu.au (and gu.edu.au) and of the "Class B" domain of
132.234. Sub-domains include all prefixes to the .griffith.edu.au domain. For example,
1.2 The alias given to an internet service helps to identify the service function and makes the
name easier to promote and remember. It also facilitates transfer of the service to different
infrastructure when required.
1.3 Top level directories are the file directories found at the top level of a service domain. Top
level directories may have multiple sub-directories each with their own sub-directories. The
name of the directory generally relates to the type of information or service that can be found
within that directory.
1.4 Service redirections can be configured for the same logical area as the top-level directories
but will redirect the service request either to another sub-directory or to another service on a
different web server. These redirections are controlled by the service administrator. It is also
possible to configure redirections from within sub-directories. Such redirections will either be
configured by the service administrator or by the nominated person responsible for that sub-
directory. Like actual top level directories, the name of the redirection generally relates to the
type of information or service that can be found within the target sub-directory or internet
The scope of this policy includes domain names, aliases, top level directories and top level web
server based redirections for internet services provided for University purposes.
The requirements of internet service security is also considered in this policy. The security policy and
subsequent guidelines will at times over-ride the requirements of this policy although this policy is
meant to be flexible enough to incorporate those requirements when they occur.
Internet services and information repositories each have their own marketing name that may be
supported by a URL. However, the scope of this policy is only for the supporting alias and does not
cover any other name for the service such as the actual service title or marketing brand. For
example, service names like eNABle, Learning@Griffith and Griffith@Anywhere are outside the
scope of this policy but the alias used by these services is within scope.
There are some examples of content arising from collaborative ventures in which Griffith is a partner.
Such examples may be treated as exceptions to this policy where necessary.
3.1 Aliases and URLs
All Griffith University internet services are assigned an alias within the griffith.edu.au domain.
Use of this domain is not permitted for non-University internet services. Similarly, non-Griffith
domain names and service aliases should not resolve to (point to) a Griffith server that serves
web pages, unless done so as part of:
an approved hosting service for a collaborative venture in which Griffith is a partner (such
as a CRC);
an event or association with which the University is involved (such as a conference); or
for an external agency (as a commercial event).
The domain gu.edu.au is not used for new services. Existing services on the legacy .gu.edu.au
domain should be migrated from gu.edu.au to griffith.edu.au wherever possible. Existing
services within the gu.edu.au domain remain governed by this and all other relevant policy.
2 Web Services Naming Policy
The Division of Information Services manages the Domain Name Service and assignment of
aliases, top level directories and top level redirections for the University.
Subdomains of .griffith.edu.au are not used unless required to enhance security.
Approval of service aliases are subject to availability and are reviewed for appropriateness.
Names are not approved if they contain personal, geographic or element names or if they
consist wholly of numbers. Names must not prejudice the reputation or credibility of the
.griffith.edu.au domain. Trademarks or copyrighted text within names are not allowed.
The domain name should be less than 20 characters in length. (This character limit refers to
the name component itself and does not include .griffith.edu.au).
Plain English aliases are only appropriate for high-use sites which may often be accessed by
the user entering the URL directly. The alias should be clear, unambiguous and logical to
remember, and reasonably short without resorting to contractions or acronyms.
Names for testing, staging, development or other instances of a production internet service
should include the production name with a suffix that indicates the purpose of the non-
production instance. If necessary, a numeral should also be included to indicate that multiple
instances exist. For example:
First test instance of internet service www2-test.griffith.edu.au
Second test instance of internet service www2-test2.griffith.edu.au
Reference instance of internet service www2-ref.griffith.edu.au
Development instance of internet service www2-dev.griffith.edu.au
Staging instance of internet service www2-stage.griffith.edu.au
3.2 Top Level Directories
Top level directories should be created either to contain a group of related subdirectories or to
contain the definitive and complete collection of the subject information, where that information
cannot be placed within an existing top level directory. Top level directories should not be
created for sites which can be logically contained within the existing top-level directory
structure or where a redirection to another location is more appropriate. They should have
concise and clear names, avoiding unnecessary contractions/abbreviations.
3.3 Internet Service Redirections
Redirections are approved where there is a clear and demonstrable requirement for the target
site to have a shorter/clearer URL that insufficient to justify the cost overhead of creating,
tracking and maintaining the redirection.
The redirection must be clear, unambiguous and apply only to the specific target of the
redirection. Reasonable forward planning considerations should be applied to evaluate the
possibility of a term becoming more broadly used in future. Potentially generic names may be
allocated to sufficiently high-profile elements/events, should they be the definitive instance of
that term for the University (eg. "/openday").
Where the redirection relates to an instance-specific subject (such as an event or project),
then the redirection should be suffixed with the relevant year (four-digit format), for example
3.4 Registering Aliases, Top Level Directories and Redirections
Requests for aliases, top level directories and redirections should be lodged using the
appropriate mechanism, as set out in the procedures in Schedule 1 that accompanies this
3 Web Services Naming Policy