Difference Between A URI And A URL

If you are interested in computer science, you may have stumbled upon the concept of uri and you will even have confused it with url but although related, they are not the same. Do you want to know what a uri is? Well then read on.


What does URI mean?

URI stands for Uniform Resource Identifier


What is uri?

Internet is said to be inhabited by many content points. Well, a URI is the way to identify any of those points of content, be it a text page, a video or a sound clip, a still or animated image, or a program.

Therefore, a URI is a string of characters that are used to identify a name or resource on the Internet.


Differences between URI and URL

A URI identifies a resource, either by location or a name, or both. A URI has two specializations known as URL and URN.

A uniform resource locator (URL) is a subset of the Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) that specifies that an identified resource is available and the mechanism to retrieve it. The URL defines how the resource can be obtained. It doesn’t have to be an HTTP URL (http: //), a URL can also be (ftp: //) or (SMB: //).

A Uniform Resource Name (URN) is a uniform resource identifier (URI) that uses the URN scheme, and does not imply the availability of the identified resource. Both URN (names) and URL (locators) are the URIs, and a particular URI can be both a name and a locator at the same time


  • A URL is a URI that identifies a resource and also provides the means to locate the resource by describing how to access it.
  • A URL is a URI
  • A URI is not necessarily a URL
  • An URN only defines one name, it does not provide details about how to obtain the resource on a network.
  • You can get a “thing” through a URL, you can’t get anything with a URN
  • In general, if the URL describes both the location and name of a resource, the term to use is URI.
  • Basically, a URI is equal to the sum of the URL and the URN