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name servers, dns, domain name resolution

Posted on 2004-08-26
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Last Modified: 2013-12-15
I purchased a domain name from surpasshosting.com, and I am renting a virtual private server (VPS) from redwoodvirtual.com. How do I make the domain name that I purchased resolve to my web server? The only instructions I can find on my web hosting provider's web site says that they following entries should be in my resolv.conf file:

domain metagloss.org
nameserver 65.19.175.2
nameserver 65.19.176.2
nameserver 65.19.174.2

Still, my domain name continues to resolve to my former hosting provider.

Though I could use some general help, here are two specific questions that come to mind:
1. Since my new web hosting provider (redwoodvirtual.com) offers name servers, do I still need install Bind (or an other DNS server) on my web server?
2. If making my domain name resolve to my web server is just a matter of modifying settings in my web server and my hosting company's name servers, then what prevents other people from making my domain name resolve to their web servers without my permission?

Thanks.
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Question by:bobwood2000
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by:jlevie
ID: 11908736
The easiset solution would be to have your hosting provider host your domain on their DNS server. IOf you contact them they'll provide you with information on what you need to do to make this happen.
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pat5star earned 500 total points
ID: 11909334
The nameserver info in your resolv.conf file is for your VPS so it can look up domains, and has nothing to do with the domain name you registered.

If surpasshosting.com is managing your domain name you need to contact them (or login and make changes yourself, if they provide that ability) and have them point the A record at your VPS IP address. You may also want to change the MX (email) record if you are running your own email server on your VPS.

On the other hand, if you want your new hosting provider to manage your domain name you will have to update the nameserver information that is currently registered for it and change it to redwoodvirtual.com's nameservers. You will have to contact surpasshosting.com to find out how to do that. You should also let redwoodvirtual.com know you are doing this ahead of time so you don't have any downtime between nameserver changes.

If your new hosting provider is willing to manage DNS for you that might be a good option to pursue. To do it yourself, you need at minimum 2 nameservers and a book or 2 on how DNS & Bind (or other DNS servers) works.

Finally, anyone can set up information about your domain name in their DNS servers but that doesn't allow them to hijack it. When a request for a domain name lookup is sent, it first goes to one of the root servers. The root servers then respond with the address of another nameserver that brings the requestor (is that a word?!) closer to the SOA (start of authority) of the domain name. This first step will be a TLD (top level domain) nameserver for one of the many TLD's, like .com, .net, .org, etc. If your domain name is domain.com then the .com nameserver will know where domain.com is as it was registered with them when you purchased it. The IP address for domain.com's SOA nameservers will be returned then. If the requestor only asked for domain.com then the lookup is complete but if they had requested www.domain.com or some.other.server.at.domain.com then the nameserver for domain.com will either respond with that information or return the address of another nameserver that gets you closer to the answer.

That's a really simplified description of how it works but I hope it helps. What I'm trying to show is that I could include your domain name in my nameserver unbeknownst to you but it doesn't matter because anyone trying to resolve your domain name will not be directed to my nameserver during the DNS traversal.

-Pat
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by:bobwood2000
ID: 11926712
Thanks!
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