Changing DNS Settings
When you switch your website hosting to Webstix, one thing that must be looked at is the DNS (Domain Name Service) settings.
Quickly, what DNS does is translate a domain name into an IP address. You can send different parts of your domain to different places (email to one server, website hosting to another, etc.) and the DNS server is where all of that happens. There are DNS entries, called “records” that pertain to different parts of your domain name.
Your DNS servers can be located anywhere. You specify which DNS servers you want to use at your domain name registrar (like Network Solutions, GoDaddy, Dotster, etc.).
Why Change DNS?
You may need to change DNS because you’re changing website hosts. Most website hosting companies will also host your DNS if they’re hosting your website. This is great but the disadvantage is that if you move away from a website hosting company, you want to make sure your DNS moves with you or they might delete your DNS records, bringing your website and email down.
When you change website hosts, you’re typically going to move your DNS as well.
A New DNS Host on Steroids
We can host your DNS for you but there’s actually a better solution out there: CloudFlare!
In a nutshell, CloudFlare does your DNS plus a whole lot more. They add in website security and they are also a CDN (Content Distribution Network).
- Security – They detect Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks on your website and they shut them down before they get out of control. You can also block countries if you need to (if you upgrade from the free plan).
- CDN – As a CDN, they cache parts of your website and deliver that content from servers that are closes to the person wanting that information. You get a little speed boost when using a CDN.
We’re encouraging all new Webstix website hosting clients go with CloudFlare for their DNS. We’ll be switching our existing hosting clients to CloudFlare as well because of all the great benefits.
It’s very easy to set up an account with CloudFlare. Just create and account, enter your domain name and they scan your current DNS records and copy them. They then give you the new DNS servers to use (primary and secondary). You’ll then go back to your domain name registrar and replace your current DNS servers with the ones CloudFlare gives you. There’s no website downtime.
DNS is one of those things you hardly ever think about as a website owner. You might have never even heard of it up to this point either but it’s an important part of keeping your website running. There have even been instances where our clients didn’t have their DNS with us, their DNS host went down and that brought their website down. Our servers were fine but because DNS didn’t work, their website didn’t work either.
To get started with your website hosting with Webstix, head over to CloudFlare and get your DNS set up.