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I don't know how the title of this question should be,

I have a Domain Controller and I want that when anyone types 'theWebSite' they be redirected to a website on a local machine i.e. 192.168.0.218.

Where should that be done? ... Somewhere in the Domain Controller or where?

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closed as not a real question by John Gardeniers, Michael Hampton, Brent Pabst, mdpc, HopelessN00b Dec 12 '12 at 12:46

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2 Answers

up vote 3 down vote accepted

You can do this at several levels, but usually the best place to do it is on your DNS server (which is indeed usually your Domain Controller).

To set this up on your DNS server:

  • Run ipconfig on one of your clients, and make a note of the DNS server it's configured to use
  • Connect to that DNS server and (assuming it's windows) open the DNS tool under Control Panel -> Administrative Tools
  • Locate the DNS entry for the server you wish to refer to
  • In that same DNS location, create a new CNAME (Alias) record
  • Enter the alias you need (theWebSite) and the target server's real name as prompted
  • Perform an ipconfig /flushdns on your client, then test

The alternative methods are:

  • Create a hosts file entry on each workstation (time consuming and must be manually maintained)
  • Create a static entry on your WINS server (if you're even running WINS, which is legacy)

Note that if your target server is 2008, you might need to change a registry setting to get it to respond to a network name that it doesn't thing is it's own. You may also need to configure IIS to respond correctly to incoming requests as it may not be configured to respond as 'theWebSite'.

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+1. Nice answer. Especially liked the "How to find your DNS server and create a CNAME record for Dummies" step-by-step. :) –  joeqwerty Aug 4 '11 at 3:31
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That is done in DNS using an alias. The alies 'theWebSite' would point to the machine you want.

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To clarify, the alias 'theWebSite' should point to the IP you want –  Nixphoe Aug 3 '11 at 23:11
    
Why an alias? Why not an A record? –  John Gardeniers Aug 4 '11 at 0:02
    
Alias or CNAME record would follow the original "A" record of the server. Just makes it easier to update in the event the IP of the machine changes. –  MikeAWood Aug 4 '11 at 0:04
    
@MikeAWood It also requires double the number of requests for the DNS lookup to complete. –  Brent Pabst Dec 11 '12 at 12:41
    
@BrentPabst agreed. But for managability sake, using CNAME records lets you move services around on the network more easily. Decommisioning servers out of a pool or swapping over servers in real time. The client still points to the CNAME, but that 2nd DNS request pulls the new IP of the machine you want it to point to. Same reason why you shouldn't name your mail server "mail", but rather set the CNAME up for mail and point it to the current server taking care of mail services. (But there are loads of different ways to do this too, this just happens to be an easier one) –  MikeAWood Dec 21 '12 at 23:43
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