- Domain Name Server (DNS) Propagation
Here is an example scenario: You registered your domain, and it's set to parking. The time comes when you decide to develop your website, so you buy hosting and set your domain to use your web host's name servers. You wait around for a while for the name server changes to take effect, and then you visit your website. But for some reason, you're being forwarded to www.dynadot.com. If your domain wasn't previously using parking, then you might be seeing your old web site. This usually happens because of IP address caching, also called DNS propagation. What's happening When a website is requested through a web browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, etc), the request is first sent to the computer's Internet Service Provider (ISP) which contacts the domain's name servers to look up the location (IP address) of the web hosting server. Caching occurs when the web hosting server at the IP address location no longer hosts the website, but a visitor's web browser still attempts to connect to that server to retrieve the web page. This happens because the web browser and the computer's operating system keeps a list of already looked up IP addresses, and it refers to that list for future IP address look ups. ISPs also keep their own IP address list as well. The purpose of this is to speed up web page loading times, and to reduce the traffic on the Internet. Unfortunately, this can lead to delays during name server changes. The images below shows what happens when there is no caching and what happens when there is caching. No caching- This is the type of lookup that happens for someone visiting your website for the first time, or if they haven't visited your website for a while. Caching at the ISP level - ISPs keep a list of already looked up domains. This list is only kept for a couple days. If a name server change is made, the ISP won't look up the new IP until the IP kept on the 'Already Retrieved' list expires. So in the example below, if ns1.your-new-host.com says 'www.yourwebsite.com is at the IP address 220.127.116.11,' the website visitor will not receive that information until the www.yourdomain.com IP on the 'Already Retrieved' list expires. Caching on your computer.- Even your computer and your web browser cache IP addresses. That way, there's no need to go out on the Internet to look up the IP address, which saves time. But during a name server change, your computer may still go to the old IP address for a few days. How to check if your website is cached Dynadot has two very useful tools for determining if your website IP address is cached. The first is our IP Lookup Tool. The IP Lookup Tool will tell you if your new name server settings are working properly. It will also show your name servers and the domain's IP address in real-time, without any caching. The second tool is our Snapshot Tool. The Snapshot Tool uses the real-time IP address to retrieve the home page of your website. If the snapshot shows the page you're expecting, but you don't see the same page when viewing your website in your web browser, then it's probably because the IP address is cached. Viewing your cached website Your website will still work properly for new visitors or infrequent visitors. To get it working for you, there are a couple things that you can try. You can try repeatedly clicking your web browser's refresh button while viewing your website, or you can try clearing your web browser's cache. You can also try restarting your computer. Windows users can clear their OS cache by using the 'ipconfig /flushdns' command. If the previous methods don't work, then the IP address might be cached by your ISP. In that case, you can try contacting your ISP and asking them to clear their DNS cache. If all of the above don't work, then you may just have to wait 1-3 days for the cached IP to expire. In the mean time, you can visit your domain from a different ISP, perhaps at work, a library, or a coffee shop. Hopefully, the ISPs and computers at those locations haven't visited your website before, or at least not recently enough to cache the IP address. Eventually though, the cached IP address will expire and the real-time IP address will be looked up and used to connect to your website. For more information about Dynadot's IP Lookup Tool and Snapshot Tool, click here.
- Chinese and Japanese Language IDNs for BIZ
Apr 18, 2007 On April 24th, 2007 (0100 UTC) the central registry for BIZ domains will be launching support for Chinese and Japanese IDNs. Chinese is the most spoken language in the world. (English is third). Japan is the world's second largest economy. BIZ is one of the most well recognized and established top level domains in the world. LAUNCH INDICATOR Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDNs are scheduled to go live at 0100 UTC, on April 24th. We have created a "Realtime Launch Indicator" so you know exactly when the launch occurs. The indicator checks real-time with the central registry, and displays either "Not Launched Yet" or "Launched". You can see the indicator on our home page, or on the IDN search pages: http://www.dynadot.com http://www.dynadot.com/domain/search2.html http://www.dynadot.com/domain/bulk2.html There are two ways to get your Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDN with Dynadot. Before the launch, you can place a pre-order. After the launch, you can place a regular order. OPTION 1: PRE-ORDERS (orders placed before the launch) Dynadot is currently taking pre-orders for Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDNs. The price is $7.99 per year. Sorry, bulk discounts are not available for this launch. Any orders for Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDN domains placed before the launch are pre-orders. Your order will remain in the processing queue until April 24. Our system will automatically try to grab your pre-orders as soon as Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDNs go live. Please note these conditions: There will be several registrars trying to get the top IDNs. We cannot guarantee that we get your requested domain. There may be more than one customer trying to pre-order the same domain as you. If Dynadot gets the domain, it will be randomly assigned to one of the pre-orders. For example, if there are 10 pre-orders for a domain, each pre-order will have a 1 in 10 chance of getting the domain. There is a huge upsurge in traffic and activity on our website during product launches. If there is a technical difficulty we may not be able to fulfill your pre-order. If for any of the above reasons we cannot fulfill your preorder, you will receive a Dynadot account credit. Sorry, we cannot provide refunds on failed pre-orders. OPTION 2: REGULAR ORDERS (orders placed after the launch) If you wait until after the launch is live, any Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDN orders you place will be handled by our regular order system. The price for a Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDN is $7.99. Sorry, there will be no bulk discounts until later. The advantage of placing a Chinese/Japanese BIZ IDN order after the launch is that searches will return false if a domain is already taken. We have recently added a fast checkout. To use the fast checkout, you first have to prepay your account. Then you have to sign into your account. Now the search page will have a "Add and Checkout" button. You can skip the account signin and payment pages in the checkout process. http://www.dynadot.com/company/prepay.html http://www.dynadot.com/resource/forums/f6-engineering-corner/fast-checkout-282.html DOMAINS NOT LOCKED There will be no registry lock for this launch. You can start using your domains immediately.
- Domain Transfer Tips
By Dynadot Staff Published: 2007/4/17 Last Updated: 2008/10/8 Domain transfers can be a real nightmare even for those that deal with domain names every day. But don't despair; here are some tips to help make your domain transfers a snap! Tip #1: Make Sure You Can Transfer Out Your Domain. There are many technical details which may prevent you from transferring your domain to another domain registrar. Here's a list of them: - Make sure your domain is over 60 days old. Newly registered domains that are less than 60 days old cannot be transferred to another domain registrar. - Make sure that your domain has not expired yet. While it is possible to transfer an expired domain name, your current domain registrar will most likely deny the transfer. - If you have recently renewed your expired domain, wait 45 days before transferring it to the new domain registrar. While you are allowed to transfer the domain in this case, you will lose your 1-year renewal with your old registrar should you transfer your domain before the initial 45 days have passed. This is explained in detail within our Help section. - Be aware of any additional rules enforced by your current registrar when transferring a domain from them to another registrar. Dynadot does not place additional restrictions, but other registrars may do so at their discretion! Tip #2: Check Your Whois info. Run a Whois lookup on your domain to check if the domain has correct and accurate contact information in the Whois database. If not, you will need to update your Whois information by changing it with your current domain registrar. Make sure the email address listed as the registrant or admin email address is an email address you have access to since all ICANN-accredited registrars are legally bound to send the transfer authorization email to that email address. You may need to remove your domain privacy or proxy service to ensure that you receive the authorization email. Tip #3: Get Your Authorization Code. Nowadays, almost every domain extension (sometimes they are referred to as TLDs) requires an authorization code before a domain transfer can be initiated. This is to help prevent random people from hijacking your beloved domain! Most of the time, this code (sometimes called a EPP code) can be found within your account at your current domain registrar. Some registrars, however, force you to ask them for the code directly before you can transfer away. If this is the case, give yourself ample time to retrieve the code before you submit your domain transfer. Once you have your authorization code, you are ready to start your domain transfer! Keep in mind that some auth codes are only valid 24 hours after they've been released. Once those 24 hours are up, you'll need to get a new auth code for your domain. Man, what a pain! Tip #4: Check Your Email. Ok, so you've checked your Whois info, retrieved your auth code, and submitted your domain transfer. Everything should be good to go, right? Wrong. You still need to authorize the domain transfer by following the steps in the authorization email which is sent to the email address in the Whois lookup for your domain. This is to help your future domain registrar confirm that you are the registrant of the domain and you did authorize the domain transfer. Tip #5: Unlock Your Domain. Now that you have authorized your domain transfer, you can unlock your domain to allow your new domain registrar to initiate the domain transfer. Ideally, you would do this once you have submitted your transfer order to your new registrar so that the transfer is initiated soon after you've unlocked it. This also minimizes the amount of time your domain stays unlocked to prevent anyone else from trying to transfer your domain. Tip #6: Look for the "Transfer has been Initiated" Email. This is the email that tells you that your domain transfer has actually started and will complete, at the latest, 6 days after the day the email was sent. At this point, all you need to do is monitor your email to see if either registrar sends you an email indicating something went wrong with the transfer. Sometimes the losing registrar asks for a last email confirmation before approving a transfer. While you could ignore that email and choose to wait for the 6 days to pass, it's best to follow the steps in that email to help finish transfer quickly. Ready to transfer a domain to Dynadot? Submit a domain transfer order. Additional information: - Different central registries may have different transfer periods and/or rules. Try to find out about them ahead of time. You may also want to see our Service Agreement for more information about the various domain extensions we support. - UK transfers are different from other domain transfers. They involve changing the ID of the domain registrar for that UK domain. More information about UK transfers can be found in our Help section.
- ORG Spanish IDN Launch
Feb 24, 2007 On March 3, 2007 the central registry for ORG domains will be launching support for Spanish IDNs. Spanish is the second most spoken language in the world, after Chinese (English is third). ORG is one of the most well recognized and established top level domains in the world. LAUNCH INDICATOR Spanish ORG IDNs are scheduled to go live sometime between 15:00 and 19:00 UTC, on March 3rd. We have created a "Realtime Launch Indicator" so you know exactly when the launch occurs. The indicator checks real-time with the central registry, and displays either "Not Launched Yet" or "Launched". You can see the indicator on our home page, or on the IDN search pages: http://www.dynadot.com http://www.dynadot.com/domain/search2.html http://www.dynadot.com/domain/bulk2.html There are two ways to get your Spanish ORG IDN with Dynadot. Before the launch, you can place a pre-order. After the launch, you can place a regular order. OPTION 1: PRE-ORDERS (orders placed before the launch) Dynadot is currently taking pre-orders for Spanish ORG IDNs. The price is $7.99 per year. Sorry, bulk discounts are not available for this launch. Any orders for Spanish ORG IDN domains placed before the launch are pre-orders. Your order will remain in the processing queue until March 3. Our system will automatically try to grab your pre-orders as soon as Spanish ORG IDNs go live. Please note these conditions: There will be several registrars trying to get the top Spanish ORG IDNs. We cannot guarantee that we get your requested domain. There may be more than one customer trying to pre-order the same domain as you. If Dynadot gets the domain, it will be randomly assigned to one of the pre-orders. For example, if there are 10 pre-orders for a domain, each pre-order will have a 1 in 10 chance of getting the domain. Because the central registry is not accepting the Spanish language tag yet, we always return "available" for Spanish ORG IDN searches. However, there are some Spanish words that have already been registered using other language tags. Several of the accented characters in Spanish also exist in other languages. So please check that your domain has not been registered using another language tag. Because the central registry is not accepting the Spanish language tag yet, variant and char-set errors cannot be detected. If we get a variant or char-set error, then your pre-order will fail. Please make sure you follow the rules of the Spanish Policy Form to avoid these errors. There are some "Legacy" Spanish ORG IDN domains, registered many years ago. These domains are currently inactive, but may become active after the launch. If a legacy domain becomes active, and you pre-order the same domain, your pre-order probably will not succeed. There is a huge upsurge in traffic and activity on our website during product launches. If there is a technical difficulty we may not be able to fulfill your pre-order. If for any of the above reasons we cannot fulfill your preorder, you will receive a Dynadot account credit. Sorry, we cannot provide refunds on failed pre-orders. OPTION 2: REGULAR ORDERS (orders placed after the launch) If you wait until after the launch is live, any Spanish ORG IDN orders you place will be handled by our regular order system. The price for a Spanish ORG IDN is $7.99. Sorry, there will be no bulk discounts for Spanish IDNs until later. The advantage of placing a Spanish ORG IDN order after the launch is that searches will return false if a domain is already taken. Also, most variant and char-set errors will be checked for by the central registry. We have recently added a fast checkout. To use the fast checkout, you first have to prepay your account. Then you have to sign into your account. Now the search page will have a "Add and Checkout" button. You can skip the account signin and payment pages in the checkout process. http://www.dynadot.com/company/prepay.html http://www.dynadot.com/resource/forums/f6-engineering-corner/fast-checkout-282.html DOMAINS LOCKED CORRECTION: PIR will start unlocking domains on May 2. All Spanish ORG IDNs registered in the first month after launch will be registry locked for 30 days after their registration date. The contact info for the domains will be Dynadot, LLC. The name servers will not be set. Any successful registrations will appear in your account however.
- Warning About Domain Registry of America
Feb 23, 2007 A domain registrar named Domain Registry of America (DRoA) has been sending deceptive renewal notices to Dynadot customers. If you respond to the notice, the domain will be transfered to DRoA. Dynadot will no longer be the registrar for your domain. DRoA charges much more for domains, $30 a year versus our price of $9.25. DRoA gets your information from the whois database. ICANN requires us to publish your contact information in the whois database. That way people can contact you regarding any issues with your domain. Unfortunately, it also allows unscrupulous companies like DRoA to get your contact information. If you receive a letter from DRoA, we recommend you throw it away. Here is a sample DRoA letter:
- BBB Recognizes Dynadot
Dynadot has earned the Better Business Bureau's "Honor Roll" award for 2006. That means that the BBB received no complaints about Dynadot for all of 2006. Given the volume of business we did in 2006, and the number of customers that we have, we feel this award is a significant accomplishment. A letter from Gene O'Neil, the president of the Golden Gate Better Business Bureau, stated: "Last year was a record year for the BBB system. Nationally the BBB system provided more than 50,000,000 company reports and handled more than 900,000 complaints!" "OUT OF ALL THOSE DISPUTES, YOUR COMPANY RECEIVED NONE" "We offer our congratulations to you for accomplishing a year of outstanding customer service. The Better Business Bureau commends your complaint free status and realizes that this milestone deserves to be recognized. We are committed to businesses such as yours, and are happy to announce you've earned the BBB's "Honor Roll" award."
- Conflict of Interest
Dynadot Staff Writer 2006/8/19 After the domain name industry was deregulated, the number of domain name registrars jumped higher, and domain name prices started falling. It has become very difficult for domain name registrars to make money on domain names alone. Most budget registrars make a couple of dollars per domain per year. Most of the money you pay for your domain goes to the central registries. This pricing pressure has forced many registrars to make money in other ways. Some registrars started collecting domain names, to sell later or to monetize the traffic with ads. This is an easy business for a registrar to get into. They have direct access to the central registries. They also pay wholesale prices for the domains. Conversely, many of the large domain collectors have become accredited domain registrars. This naturally raises some questions for the registrar's customers. First of all, are they monitoring my domain name searches for potential registations? What better way to find valuable domains than to see what other people find valuable. Secondly, are they actually deleting my domain names when they expire, or are they keeping them for themselves? Some expiring domains have massive amounts of traffic and can generate hundreds of dollars in ad revenue per year. Dynadot does not participate in the business of domain name collecting. We believe that is a conflict of interest, because in a sense we are now competing with our own customers for domain names. We only own about 20 domains, all variants of "dynadot". Furthermore, we do not monitor or save your domain name searches in any way. Since we are not in the business of collecting domains, we have no incentive to do so. It would actually be extra work for us to log your searches, and we have plenty of work to do already. We also do not keep your expiring domains. We delete them. No matter how valuable the domain is, or how much traffic it has, we delete the domain. The domain belongs to you, and if you choose not to renew it, we will faithfully delete it for you. Dynadot focuses on domain name registration only, not domain name collecting. By eliminating a potential conflict of interest with our customers, we hope to increase mutual trust.
- A Beginner's Guide to Creating a Website (for $9.75)
by Dynadot Staff Writer 2006/2/7 Beginners often feel overwhelmed when trying to create a website for the first time. There are so many new skills and concepts to learn. However, it is really not hard if you take things one step at a time. This article will explain exactly what you need to do to create your first website. 1. The first step to creating a website is choosing a domain name. The domain name is what people type into the browser to get to your website. Once you register a domain name, only you can use it. You can get a domain name for $9.75 here at Dynadot. 2. The second step is to choose a web host. A web host provides a place for you to upload the pages of your website. For your first website, we recommend you choose a free web host. Type "free hosting" in Google for some providers. Note that the free web hosts come with restrictions. For example, some place ads on your site and some strictly limit how many times your website can be viewed per day. 3. The third step is to choose an email provider. Yahoo, Google, and Hotmail are all free providers of email accounts. 4. The fourth step is to connect your domain name to your free hosting and free email. Sign into your Dynadot account and select the checkbox for your domain. Click "Set Name Servers". Select "Dynadot Stealth Forwarding". Type in the web address for your free hosting for the URL. Then type in your email address. Now when people type your domain in the browser, it will load the pages in your free hosting. When people send you email at your domain, it will forward the email to your free email account. 5. The final step is to design a simple web page. Create a file called "index.html" on your desktop. Using your favorite word processor, type the following:
My SiteHello World! Now save the file. Make sure to "Save As" a "Text Only" document. Now upload the file "index.html" to your webhost using a FTP program. Your webhost should have given you a FTP username and password to use. Once the file has been uploaded, your website is now online for the world to see. Congratulations. We encourage you to learn more about html. Search in Google for "html tutorial" find one of the many free tutorials about how to design websites.
- Domain Lifecycle Explanation
By Dynadot Staff Writer 2006/01/09 This article examines the lifecycle of a typical domain name, from registration to deletion. For simplicity, we will say that our domain name was registered on Jan 1, 2005. Date Event Status 2005/01/01 domain registered ACTIVE 2005/03/01 after 60 days, the domain can now be transferred to another registrar, if desired ACTIVE 2005/11/01 most registrars start sending renewal notices around this time ACTIVE 2006/01/01 the domain has expired; most registrars will HOLD the domain, which means your website and email will no longer work; you can still renew your domain name for the regular price; you can no longer transfer the domain unless you renew first REGISTRAR-HOLD Grace Renewal Period 2006/01/30 During the last 10 days of the domain's grace renewal period, an additional fee of $10 is charged by Dynadot for renewals REGISTRAR-HOLD Late Renewal Fee 2006/02/09 after 40 days, most registrars delete the domain; to get the domain back after this point you have to restore it which costs a lot REDEMPTION PERIOD 2006/03/11 after 30 days, the domain can no longer be restored; the only way to get the domain back is to wait until it is dropped from the registry; of course anyone else can also register the domain at that time PENDING DELETE 2006/03/16 after 5 days, the domain is dropped from the central registry and can now be registered by anyone, first come first serve; if the domain is valuable or has lots of traffic it will be snapped up seconds after it has dropped; Google "expiring domain names" for more information; to get a valuable domain back consider using a service like Snapnames.com. none If you want to keep your domain name, the best policy is to renew early. You do not lose any time by renewing early. For example, if the domain expires on Jan 1 2006, and you renew 1 month before that, the new expiration date is Jan 1 2007. The chart above applies to COM & NET domains. ORG, INFO, BIZ, US & CN domains have a similar lifecycle, but the status names may be different. WS domains do not have a REDEMPTIONPERIOD, and are dropped 25 days after expiration. Check out our Domain Lifecycle Infographic below for more info:
- Domain Hijacking: How to Safeguard Your Account
By Dynadot Staff Writer 2005/12/20 Fraud, identity theft, and account hijacking are on therise. Luckily, there are some easythings you can do to protect your account information.
Here are just a few tips to keepingyourself safe online: • Keep your username and password in a safe place. This sounds like commonsense. But you'd be surprised athow relaxed some people can be. Play it safe, and don't share your password with anyone. • Choose a good password. The worst thing you can do is tochoose an obvious password. Badpasswords include your name or email, can easily be guessed by others, arecomposed of whole words, or contain information that is public knowledge aboutyou such as your birthday. The best passwords contain acombination of letters, numbers, and symbols. Good passwords should be nearly impossible to guess, eitherby strangers or close friends. • Change your password periodically. While we make every effort toimplement the latest encryption technology available, there is an easy thingyou can do to prevent someone from guessing your password: Change your password periodically. • Treat your personal email account as sacred. Your email is one of the ways wecan verify that you are who you say you are. It is also our primary way of contacting you. So, treat your email account assacred. Always log off youraccount and then close your browser window. Think that's being paranoid? You're without internet connection andask your boyfriend, roommate, or friend to check your email for you, thinkingyou'll change the password later. Or, you log in to your personal email account at work, and then walkaway from your computer while co-workers walk right past your desk. Don't make it easy for people to hijackyour email account! That givesthem access to your domain names and hosting service, not to mention countlessother online services (i.e. PayPal) you may subscribe to. • Be wary while surfing the 'net. If you're not careful, you mightsurf right onto a web page that secretly downloads a script to yourcomputer. This ingenious code isevil because it captures everything you type into your keyboard, such aspasswords and other sensitive information. Only visit trusted web sites! • Be wary while downloading. Same as surfing. You can never be too careful whendownloading software or songs from unreliable, unproven sources. If in doubt, play it safe. • Use a secure web browser and operating system. If possible, avoid using InternetExplorer as your web browser, and Windows as your operating system. Both ofthese products have been plagued with serious security problems in the past. • Follow Dynadot's procedures and use the functions wecreate for you. Using the account managementfunctions and following the procedures that we create, is not just for yourconvenience, but also for your protection. For example, sometimes it seemseasier to simply give your entire account to someone who is buying your one andonly domain name. But that's adangerous practice because the account still contains your old orderinformation, including any credit card or other payment information. Even if you manually delete thisinformation from your account, the information can still be retrieved from ourold servers by a tech-savvy new account owner. The safe thing is to have the new owner create their ownDynadot customer account, and then use our handy " Change Owner"function. Likewise, if you are buying adomain from someone else, don't just take over their old account. They can steal it back from you byappealing to the registrar and proving that they were the original accountcreator. Basically, they can successfullyaccuse you of stealing the domain by hijacking their account. Again, use the functions we provide foryou in order to assure your account's security. • Internet scams: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Avoid internet scams like theplague. For a list of scams, please see this Wikipedia article on Internet Scams. While a Dynadot customer servicerepresentative may ask you to verify your username and email, our employees aretrained to never ask for yourpassword. So if you receive therare phone call from someone who claims to work for us, and he asks for yourpassword, play it safe and hang up on him! Think you've got a good tip foraccount security?? Submit it to us by email. Copyright © 2005. Dynadot, LLC. All rights reserved. Last modified December 19, 2005.