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DNS, a journey through ambiguity.

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So let me set the stage here, I'm a DNS newb; completely and utterly not the person to come to when it comes to understanding name servers and record types. Well, that was until last night when I had one of those amazing learning experiences where things just freakin' clicked.

I was setting up a dedicated server for a client because the website was getting sluggish and my host was walking me through setting up name servers on my registrar and changing where the domain points and ironically, none of that was necessary.

Upon creating a domain on most large scale registrars your site is hosted even though you haven't uploaded a single file. Even if you don't have hosting for that domain, it is hosted. So basically you can then just edit the A records (usually found under something like 'Advanced DNS') to point to whatever you want without getting into the muck of creating name servers on the registrar.

So all I did was edit the A record 'www', '@', and '*' to point to the new dedicated server and everything is up and running the way it should and the client's other domain settings for email and other things work just as splendidly and don't need to be re-duplicated.

Basically if you want to know more about DNS, I suggest looking into C Names, A records, and MX records for your domain name. Remember that I basically am just taking advantage of what is already setup and ready to go because all I needed from my dedicated server was to simply serve the website, why re-create the wheel?

A records - Address Records: assigns an IP address to a domain or subdomain name. When the domain name system was designed it was recommended that no two A records refer to the same IP address.

CName - You should use a CNAME record whenever you want associate a new subdomain to an already existing A record; i.e. you can make "www.somedomain.tld" to "somedomain.tld", which should already have been assigned an IP with an A record.

MX Records - An MX record or mail exchange record maps a domain name to a list of mail exchange servers for that domain.

Finally, remember that I am a professing DNS newb and am sure that there are benefits to having your dedicated server do all of the work, but I am merely pointing out what A records, C records, and MX records do for you.

I got my defintions from DNS Records Explained and they even have more info about DNS.

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