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A web portal, also known as a links page, presents information from diverse sources in a unified way.
Apart from the standard search engine feature, web portals offer other services such as e-mail, news, stock prices, information, databases and entertainment. Portals provide a way for enterprises to provide a consistent look and feel with access control and procedures for multiple applications and databases, which otherwise would have been different entities altogether.

Examples of public web portals are AOL, iGoogle, MSNBC, Netvibes and Yahoo!.

 
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IIn the late 1990s the web portal was a hot commodity. After the proliferation of web browsers in the late-1990s many companies tried to build or acquire a portal, to have a piece of the Internet Market. The web portal gained special attention because it was, for many users, the starting point of their web browser. Netscape became a part of America Online, the Walt Disney Company launched Go.com, and Excite and @Home became a part of AT&T during the late 1990s. Lycos was said to be a good target for other media companies such as CBS.

The portal craze, with "old media" companies racing to outbid each other for Internet properties, died down with the dot-com flameout in 2000 and 2001. Disney pulled the plug onGo.com, Excite went bankrupt and its remains were sold to iWon.com. Some portal sites such as Yahoo! and those others first listed in this article remain successful.
 
 
 
 
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Personal portals: A personal portal is a site on the World Wide Web that typically provides personalized capabilities to its visitors, providing a pathway to other content. It is designed to use distributed applications, different numbers and types of middleware and hardware to provide services from a number of different sources. In addition, business portals are designed to share collaboration in workplaces.
Regional web portals: Along with the development and success of international personal portals such as Yahoo!, regional variants have also sprung up. Some regional portals contain local information such as weather forecasts, street maps and local business information. Another notable expansion over the past couple of years is the move into formerly unthinkable markets.
News portals: The traditional media rooms all around the world are fast adapting to the new age technologies. This marks the beginning of news portals by media houses across the globe. This new media channels give them the opportunity to reach the viewers in a shorter span of time than their print media counter parts.
Government web portals: At the end of the dot-com boom in the 1990s, many governments had already committed to creating portal sites for their citizens. In the United States the main portal is USA.gov in English and GobiernoUSA.gov in Spanish in addition to portals developed for specific audiences such as Disability.gov; in the United Kingdom the main portals are Directgov (for citizens) and businesslink.gov.uk (for businesses).
Corporate web portals: Corporate intranets became common during the 1990s. As intranets grew in size and complexity, webmasters were faced with increasing content and user management challenges. A consolidated view of company information was judged insufficient; users wanted personalization and customization.
 
 
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