DNS Records Explained - Domain Name System Management
What is DNS?Domain Name System, or DNS, converts domain names into numbers, called IP addresses. Every website is identified by a number, an IP address; computers read that. One of the IP addresses for Google is 188.8.131.52. When web browsers look for Google, they are looking for 184.108.40.206, which they find in the Google Name Server databases. DNS forms the backbone of the internet, the authority on where every website is located.
Some Basic Uses Of Various DNS Records
|Record Type||Explanation||How Domain Owners Typically Use It|
|A Record||Assigns an address for your domain to a specific IP (www to 12.345.678.90).||To control which specific servers host a particular function associated with their online presence (website, email, etc). Many other DNS records require an associated A Record in order to function properly.|
|CNAME Alias||A hostname that points to another hostname (info.your-domain.net to info.your-domain.com).||To point a subdomain to another domain or subdomain (normal subdomains can only point to a directory within your hosting account).|
|MX Record||A hostname that defines the mail receiving server(s), and the priority in which each server is used in case a server fails to receive mail.||To utilize a different email service than their hosting provider, or to designate personal servers as mail backups just in case the default mail options fail.|
|Name Server Record||A hostname that points to a specific name server (shop.your-domain.com to ns1.example.com)||To manage all other records. The changes in A Records, MX Records, and other DNS records should be done where your Name Servers are located.|
|Private Name Server||Allows you to define your own name servers rather than use the generic ones provided by us (ns1.your-domain.com instead of ns1.hostingcompany.com).||To maintain anonymity between their online business and their hosting provider, or to utilize hosting on their VPS or Dedicated Server.|
|TXT/SPF Record||A Sender Policy Framework which helps to reduce spam and domain spoofing.||To verify the domain for secure use with external services, such as Google Analytics.|
|SRV Records||Custom DNS records used to establish connections between a service and a hostname||When an application needs to find a specific service location, it will search for a related SRV record. There is currently no option to add this type of record in your Domains Dashboard. Please contact us for assistance.|
A domain name is your website address. It is the name that people type in the URL bar of their browser to find your website. You can purchase a domain name through a registrar or your hosting provider.
Domain Pointing And Redirecting
You are not always required to change your DNS Records when you want to point your domain or set up a redirect. You can try using a 301 redirect or simple Domain Pointers to accomplish what you need. These types of redirects are great for forwarding all traffic from one domain onto another. If you need to fine-tune how your domain works, you will need to utilize DNS Records instead.
Knowing Which DNS Records Are Correct
When you register a domain or add an existing domain to your account, a zone file (set of DNS records) is created for that domain. The zone file's records all point to us by default. The settings contained within the zone file only work if your domain's name servers are pointing to us, if the name servers are pointing to another company, then the domain would be using the other company's DNS settings. Use this link to view how you can update your Nameservers to us.
We can help you understand how to make changes to your DNS Records. We can also reset your DNS Records back to the original default settings. We can also try to verify that the DNS Records you see inside of Domains Dashboard match what the rest of the world sees (propagation times may cause up to a 48 delay whenever you make a modification to your DNS Records).
However, if you decide to use DNS Records that vary from our defaults, we will not be able to verify that you are using accurate records. The records you utilize should be obtained from the company you are trying to point the records to. If you prefer to reset your records back to the defaults, please contact us for assistance.
Updating DNS Records
After knowing various DNS Records and their usage, it is best to know how to update such. Here are some of the articles that will guide you in making these changes happen.
- How to Update DNS Records - DNS Management
- Domain Management: How To Update Nameservers
- How to Update A Records - DNS Management
- How to Update MX Records - Mail Exchange Record - DNS Management
- How to Update TXT and SPF Records - DNS Management
- How to Update CNAME Aliases - Canonical Name - DNS Management