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I have a new Virtual Private Server from GoDaddy that uses Plesk 11 control panel on a Windows Server 2008 operating system with 2 IP addresses.

I had a lot of trouble getting it set up, but with some help from the people here at serverfault, I got it running using Amazon's Route53 service, doing the following.

Nameservers       NS       Route53
domain.com        A        IP Address of Server Box
www.domain.com    CNAME    domain.com

Then in my domain registrar (NetworkSolutions.com) I set the Nameservers to the ones given to me by Route53 And then in the Plesk server, I just did not have any kind of DNS setup (I told it to turn DNS resolution off)

Waiting a few hours to let all the propagation magic happen, it seemed to magically work! (Hurrah!)

Not knowing anything about server technology (first timer here, I am a software engineer - not a network admin), I really want to learn more now - I really liked getting this to work.

I want to understand how to achieve this without using the Plesk control panel. As I understand it, I do not want Windows to behave as the DNS server.

Can anyone give me some tips on how to do this? Do I just install Windows Server 2008 fresh, add "Web Server" as a role, and then ... do nothing? Or do I need to go through a lot of convoluted setup? Again, my level is absolute beginner on this subject.

Thanks again for the help - it is glad to know that the people on serverfault are as helpful and kind as the people on stackoverflow I have been working with for years.

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How to achieve what exactly? Seems like you got it working with only Route53 and the NetworkSolutions control panel; no Plesk. –  xofer Nov 25 '12 at 23:42

1 Answer 1

I think the bit you're missing is the role that Plesk plays in this, which is essentially nothing.

Plesk is configured out of the box to run a local DNS master server. This is convenient, especially if you add and remove (sub)domains a lot (like in a virtual hosting setup) because updating the DNS for domains managed by Plesk is automatic. However, to do so you need at least one DNS slave (aka "secondary") running on another server, ideally in a separate data center far far away from the master (aka "primary"), and configured in Plesk. I'm not entirely sure how this is done as I've never set this up in Plesk.

The downside is that your DNS master server is running on the same machine that's hosting the websites, and some may argue that this is a bad idea. I would agree given that you don't have much experience with DNS -- if the server completely died, you'd have to reorganize your DNS setup to get it working again.

So I think your best bet is to stick with Route53, and turn off DNS in Plesk.

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