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DNS: What You Need to Know

Posted by Jamison on 05 04 2016.

Domain name system, more commonly referred to as DNS, controls a website’s domain and email settings. Basically, when a visitor goes to a website (or the domain name), the DNS settings of that website control which server it accesses.

 

For instance, every time visitors try to go to your website, they will reach the servers of the web host service you are using. Change these settings with the settings of another web host company, and you visitors will use the new company’s servers instead.

 

Avoiding Confusion with DNS

 

DNS can be quite confusing, since many different elements make it up. These elements control various parts of a website’s domain name. A great way to avoid confusion when it comes to your DNS settings is to know more about its most important elements.

 

Critical DNS Elements

 

Here are the most important elements of DNS you should know about.

 

	These “point” to a website’s domain name to the…

Domain name system, more commonly referred to as DNS, controls a website’s domain and email settings. Basically, when a visitor goes to a website (or the domain name), the DNS settings of that website control which server it accesses.

 

For instance, every time visitors try to go to your website, they will reach the servers of the web host service you are using. Change these settings with the settings of another web host company, and you visitors will use the new company’s servers instead.

 

Avoiding Confusion with DNS

 

DNS can be quite confusing, since many different elements make it up. These elements control various parts of a website’s domain name. A great way to avoid confusion when it comes to your DNS settings is to know more about its most important elements.

 

Critical DNS Elements

 

Here are the most important elements of DNS you should know about.

 

  1. These “point” to a website’s domain name to the specific company controlling its DNS settings. In most cases, this is the company you have registered your domain name with. In the event you are using another company to host your website though, you may need to utilize the host’s nameservers.

 

  1. Zone File. These files act as a storage for all the DNS settings of your domain. You can find this on the nameserver of the company you either registered your domain name with or your web host.

 

  1. A Record. These point domain names to individual servers via an IP address. All domain names have a unique A Record known as “a.” This controls the actions of a domain name whenever a visitor tries to access it. You can also use these to direct your subdomains to a particular IP address of your server.

 

  1. These point subdomains to another server via a server name. However, these cannot use individual IP addresses unlike A Records. A huge percentage of domain names have their own CNAMEs.

 

  1. MX Records. These point the email of your domain name to your email provider.

 

To make it easier for their customers, some web hosting service providers allow their users to view or make changes with their DNS settings directly with their platforms.

Managing DNS for Domain Names

 

When you want to change the service you use for your domain name’s website and email, you can do so through its DNS settings.

 

Check with your web host provider if they have a management tool for altering DNS settings. For instance, Go Daddy, which is compatible with cPanel, has a tool called DNS Manager. This allows you to change settings with your DNS easily and quickly.

 

Configuring your DNS for cPanel Domains

 

cPanel allow you to host not only a website, but also an email for domain names. You just need to establish a link between your cPanel account and your domain name through changing its DNS via its DNS settings.

 

For some shared web host customers, their domains are configured automatically as long as these are within the same hosting account. For most other users, they need to make alterations with the company they registered their domain names with.