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Here's what I need:

  • www. and root of domain are hosted on the old host
  • beta. is hosted by the new host

Here is the problem:

  1. Old Host does not allow ANY editing of DNS Records on their Name Servers.
  2. New Host allows Records to be changed, but you cannot modify A records for root or www.
  3. I am trying to use the registrar (Network Solutions) who has full managed DNS.

Each host's name servers are already set up to host the root or sub-domain (respectively). Both are shared hosting environments, so I don't think I can use A records. I believe I have to direct different requests, depending on what subdomain is requested, through different secondary name servers.

My imagined solution is to use CNAMEs so that...

  • mysite.org and www.mysite.org resolve through ns1.oldhost.com and ns2.oldhost.com
  • beta.mysite.org resolves through ns1.newhost.net and ns2.newhost.net

In other words...

mysite.org CNAME ns1.oldhost.com
beta.mysite.org CNAME ns1.newhost.net

Will this work? Is there a better option?

Am I wrong about not being able to use A records? If you set an A record for a domain to resolve to an IP and the hosting environment is shared, does that work? Does the Apache server at that IP know which site on it to show this way?

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3  
NS used to point to name servers, not CNAME. You question is not-so clear actually. where DNS hosted, where web hosted, what do you mean by "points". Looks like there's some confusion between things. Maybe try to explain more clearly what you need. –  Sandman4 Nov 10 '11 at 20:25
    
What do you mean by "points to"?! Do you mean ns1.odlhost.org and ns2.oldhost.org are the nameservers for 'mysite.org'? And where would you be making these CNAMEs exactly? –  David Schwartz Nov 10 '11 at 20:43
    
Obviously, my question was confusing as it was. I tried to reword it. It is a confusing setup, but hopefully now you'll understand why I would be trying to do these crazy things. Thank you! –  matt1122 Nov 10 '11 at 21:01
    
Oh, and "points to" meaning "resolves to / through" sort of. –  matt1122 Nov 10 '11 at 21:07
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2 Answers

up vote 0 down vote accepted

You can not use in NS hostnames, which are CNAMEd lately on route (can't recall RFC-number, but it's prohibited on this level)

Both are shared hosting environments, so I don't think I can use A records

But you can do it:

>nslookup www.lazybadger.net

Non-authoritative answer:
Name:    www.lazybadger.ru
Address:  188.120.246.161
Aliases:  www.lazybadger.net

net cnamed to ru, ru have A

Instead of using such strange DNS-hoster, why not use any independent reliably 3-rd party solution without idiotic limitation? I, personally, have my sites on two different hosters and manage zones independently without any headache

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We are working on getting away from the old host which has all of the restrictions on DNS. Your example for lazybadger is appreciated, but that is not exactly what we are trying to do. Thank you, though, as you made me realize that I don't need to point to name servers for the new host. –  matt1122 Nov 10 '11 at 22:17
    
Well, better and more easy can be if we'll know real domain name. And - are you sure, that beta is subdomain? Not a host in parent zone? In this case why not just refer to beta-zone on newhost (without parent zone on it) in oldhost zone by only NS and leave parent zone as is –  Lazy Badger Nov 10 '11 at 23:04
    
Beta is not currently a subdomain, however it is set up to be one on the new host. So for now it will be a separate host. Are you saying that I could enter separate NS records for beta.domain.com? –  matt1122 Nov 11 '11 at 0:59
    
Well, don't mix host and subdomain - it's different things. You can have (must really) separate NS-records and zone definition for all and any subdomain in your domain. Not for host. But - subdomain can have @ IN A record and have not more hosts in it. in this case you can have beta only in separate zone with needed IP –  Lazy Badger Nov 11 '11 at 2:41
    
Thanks for that suggestion. I used it to find an example of exactly what I was looking for: zytrax.com/books/dns/ch9/delegate.html The example under the heading "Domain Name-Server Zone Files" is exactly what I needed, and is (I believe) what you're saying as well. And what I meant before is that the new hosting service obviously adds a separate host machine/server, I didn't know if that would be relevant. In my case, it is a subdomain, though. Thanks! –  matt1122 Nov 11 '11 at 6:08
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Yes, switch to the registrar that has full, managed DNS. Tell the other hosting provider to stop serving your domain, though no real harm will happen if they don't stop.

First, record the exact settings of all your domains. Then arrange with your domain registrar to set your domain's nameservers to their nameservers.

Then, in the new, fully configurable DNS, enter in the appropriate A records for each domain and appropriate A or CNAME records for each sub-domain. There are four possible cases:

1) Problem: Sub-domain, current record is an A. For example, your "www.mydomain.com" currently resolves to "1.2.3.4". Solution: A record for "www.mydomain.com" to "1.2.3.4".

2) Problem: Sub-domain, current record is a CNAME. For example, your "www.mydomain.com" currently resolves to "www-32.myhostingprovider.com". Solution: CNAME record for "www.mydomain.com" to "www-32.myhostingprovider.com".

3) Problem: Domain, current record is an A. For example "mydomain.com" currently resolves to "1.2.3.4". Solution: A record of "mydomain.com" to "1.2.3.4".

Domain's can be CNAMEd, so there's no fourth case.

Don't forget to copy over any MX or other records you need or you'll break things like main.

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So I can* simply set an A record for a shared host and it will work, knowing that the user is looking for my site and not another site on the same server? –  matt1122 Nov 11 '11 at 6:04
    
Isn't that exactly what you're doing now? Don't you have an A record now? –  David Schwartz Nov 11 '11 at 6:31
    
After looking it up, yes there is a simple A record on oldhost's DNS records. I had mistakenly believed that all shared hosting was set up like a load balancing system. Thank you for your help! –  matt1122 Nov 11 '11 at 16:21
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