Getting The Most Out Of Our API

Jan 9, 2014

In January 2012, Dynadot began offering API access to all customers, so we thought it was about time we wrote a post on how to maximize your results! ;) First, the basics. Our domain API is a tool that allows you to build and use your own software and servers to search for domains, register domains, and more. Each account has its own unique API key. To use our API, you will need to retrieve this key and whitelist the IP address you will be using to send your requests. All of this can be done on the API Settings page in your account. Please allow at least 15 minutes for our system to whitelist your IP address once it has been entered.

Once that is all squared away, you are ready to start making API calls. We have 2 versions to choose from: Regular and Advanced. The advanced version will return results in an XML format. Please remember to send all requests over https for security. Only one request can be processed at a time, so please wait for your current request to finish before sending another.

We have only so many Registry connections available. We have doubled our connections since opening up the API to all accounts, but they are still limited. We decided that the best way to allocate available connections is to base them on yearly spending. All API requests are first given a priority score. This score is the total account spending divided by the connections received by the account in the last 24 hours. So an account with high spending that gets a lot of connections will get a lower and lower priority score over time. This allows lower spending accounts to eventually get connections too.

All API requests are put into a queue and sorted by their priority score. Once a connection becomes available, the API request with the highest priority score is removed from the queue and given the connection. If a request is not given a connection after 10 seconds, a "system_busy" response is returned.

Here are three keys to API success:

  1. Spend more $$$. Higher spending equals a higher priority score.

  2. Don't get banned! One of the few limitations we have on our API is that you must wait for a response to your request before sending another. Failing to do this will result in a 10 minute ban. Rather than write your script to send something like 200 requests per hour, have it send the next request only after receiving a response from the first. Not only will a ban cost you precious time, it can lower your priority score as well.

  3. Research drop times. Verisign (the Central Registry for com and net domains) tends to drop their domains between 11am and 2pm Pacific Time. This is when our API is busiest. If you are not looking for a com or net domain, try to avoid these hours. You can also research when your desired TLD might drop. The closer you can get to the drop time, the better your chance at grabbing that high-interest domain.

Now that you're "in the know", why not get started with our domain API today?

This post is written by Alex, one of our awesome customer service representatives.