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There's a domain name I'm willing to register which has Expiration Date: 30-Oct-2009 and Status:REDEMPTIONPERIOD.
Shouldn't it have been already released? Should I just wait or is there anything I could do about this?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Shouldn't it have been already released?

Not necessarily. Procedures vary greatly from registrar to registrar, but domains can often remain registered, in a 'suspended' state for weeks or months after they were due to expire. Their name server information is usually removed, to prevent the domain being routable, but the domain is 'locked', allowing the original owner to pay the fee and claim it again within the grace period offered by the registrar.

If the domain name you're after will prove to be a popular one when it is eventually deleted and released back to the pool of available domains, you'd want to use a service which will automatically purchase it once this happens. Popular, recently expired domains are often monitored by those most interested in the market, so it could be deleted and re-registered very quickly. Procedures vary depending on the registrar as to when the domain will be released back to the available domains pool.

Have a look at this site about expired domains for some more info on these 'deleted domain' services.

You might also consider enquiring with the domain's registrar to determine their procedures for expired domains, and don't forget, the original owner could still re-claim the domain during their grace period!

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Every time I log into our 123-reg account to manage anything, it tells me that a domain that expired months ago is "due to expire" and that we should renew it no matter how many times we've gone to the relevant place and clicked "allow to expire" and confirmed. Could be a system bug in this case, so contacting the registrar may help if the domain you are interested in is locked in a similar state. – David Spillett Jan 5 '10 at 11:33

What is RedemptionPeriod?

Basically, the Registrar is just holding on to the domain name for whatever reasons. However, some Registrars abuse the system, apparently. They use this mechanism to hold on to the more popular domain names, in the hopes that someone will offer an above-average fee for the domain. There is a chance that the current Registrar is just reserving the domain for some other usage. Why they would do this, I don't know. Possibly they've linked it to an advertisement page which still gets a lot of hits, thus it generates additional income for them while it's having this status.

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