web hosting question

Posted on 2012-04-10
Last Modified: 2012-04-13
Hi Experts,

I am moving a busy site from (because their support is horrible) to hostgator.

The site is moved and working but I haven't updated the name service info yet because I want to leave the email running with for the moment.

How can I direct web traffic to the hostgator server and mail traffic to the myhosting server.

Seems to me it's MX record but I'm guessing.  Can some expert tell me how to do this?


Question by:HelpNearMe
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LVL 39

Accepted Solution

Aaron Tomosky earned 300 total points
ID: 37828026
The mx record does indeed tell the Internet where your mailserver is. So technically all you need to do is change the @ to the new ip of host gator (if it's a dedicated ip, if not you have to setup the domain at host gator).
You can move the nameserver to host gator, then you would have to setup the mx to point back to the old host and also recreate all your subdomains. Probably easier to just do the first way or now.

Author Comment

ID: 37828300
thanks Aarontomonsky,

the hostgator account has a dedicated IP.  So I want web on hostgator and email on

I've attached the respective dns control panels in screenshots, perhaps you can tell my were you think the edits should go.

You'll need to zoom in on the images to read them.


LVL 39

Expert Comment

by:Aaron Tomosky
ID: 37828695
so you don't need to add anything in hostgator.

assuming it works the way you have it now, just change the @ server ip to the new hostgator server ip.
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Author Comment

ID: 37828746
Ok, to clarify the @ server param specifies the web server address and it simply redirects/forwards web traffic to the new address (hostgator)?  This should leave the current email server intact and accessible at myhosting and web traffic goes over to hostgator (which is the goal).

Do I have it right?


LVL 39

Expert Comment

by:Aaron Tomosky
ID: 37828838
Yes. @ is shorthand for your domain name. Since your mail. Has an ip already explicitly stated, it won't change when you change the main web ip. You can also make one called www an point it to @. That way someone who adds www to your domain will still get the right place

Author Comment

ID: 37830167
Lovely, doesn't allow me to edit the HOST A record, they don't let customers do that.  See attached

Any other suggestions about how I can forward web only traffic to our hostgator server while keeping email going to the myhosting server?

thanks for the help so far

LVL 39

Expert Comment

by:Aaron Tomosky
ID: 37830274
Change the nameserver to host gator and recreate the mx records pointing back to my host mail server.

Assisted Solution

backhaul earned 200 total points
ID: 37833652
Thought I'd add my 2c to this topic:

In the jpg where you have the error, you already have a record for @  (
You probably can't have two @ records pointing to two ip addresses. Software limitation.

Whether you use the short hand "@" or "" or "" (notice the period at the end) you will get the same results.

1) Does your mx record work correctly?  
2) Does your www record work correctly?
3) Does your record work correctly?

Below is just some information I thought of.

When dealing with DNS we are not looking at "traffic" persay, but we are looking at records. Most people do use the "protocol" or application traffic type to delineate the type of service.

In your case we are looking at the following services:

smtp  <notice the period>
    ---or we can use

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in replace of


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we have an

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record which points to the ip address of the host/machine running our web service (internet web traffic/website etc).


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we have a

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record pointing to an IP address or  host/machine name running the mail service.

We can have a single server at the same hosting company running smtp and www services.
we can have www running at one hosting service and smtp running at another.

Looking at what you are trying to do in the jpg, looks like you are adding a duplicate @ record.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 37842761
Thanks for your help, got it working!

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