Understanding Domain Names – The Beginner’s Guide

Understanding Domain Names – The Beginner’s Guide

A domain name is primary address of any website(s). This is a human-readable or friendly address meaning its is easily memorable to all. All domain names are linked to a certain IP address which point to the server they reside in. So instead of your users going around saying something like “ has a 40% off on summer bikinis…” they can now say “shop100 has 40% off…”

Now that you understand what a domain name is; Why is GHA Technologies asking you to change your nameservers?

We have just told you that a domain name points to a server where all your emails and websites reside but we have not discussed what does this. Thats where nameservers come in. They are identifiers for IP addresses that reside in a global network known as DNS (Domain Name System). Think of this as a big directory book of ip addresses against their respective servers.

A domain name can have upto five(5) nameservers. Why is this? Redundancy.

Let’s say your website or app example.org has only one(1) nameserver and something happens the nameserver goes down, all your services go down with it. Multiple nameservers solves this issue where an alternative is offered in such cases ensuring your website or app is always online.

Why is GHA Technologies telling me to wait 24hrs to 48hrs to get my website back online after I changed nameservers?  First of all nameservers do not propagate. This is a term that is misused in the industry maybe it’s a language issue. That aside, to answer this question when you change nameservers of your domain name it should technically take 4-6hrs for widely known service providers however, in some cases we see customers having domain names with upto 72hr propagation.

What is this propagation about? When you change nameservers they have to tell all the other DNS servers out there about the change which is dictated by TTL (Time to Live) passing, and those numbers can all add up when you’re talking about all the DNS servers around the world. TTL (Time to Live) is a nameserver setting that tells the DNS resolver how long to cache a query before requesting a new one.

Depending on how your domain nameservers are setup on your previous service provider how long it takes to propagate your domain name depends on the TTL (Time to Live) setting they set for you.

At GHA Technologies propagation takes less than 2hrs. 

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