Ok, quite the idiot with DNS.. apart from the basics.

I have a domain name hosted with a domain registrar. It seems to have full DNS control (i.e. ability to view/edit A Records, Mail etc..)

  1. We have recently setup a server at Rackspace which hosts the new website
  2. The original/existing server (where the old website still is and Mail) is on another shared hosting companies server

I went to the domain name registrar, and checked out the DNS management as follows:

click here to view the DNS screenshot

So obviously the A Record is pointing to the actual server where the website/mail is I figure, and the CNAME is pointing (alias?) to the website url.

So my question is this: If I want the web traffic portion to go to the Rackspace/new server, but keep the mail going to where it is now, what do I have to change?

Also, should I even change this info at the domain registrar? the rackspace server account has full DNS which seems to suggest I can point to their nameservers and then re-direct the MX (Mail) traffic to where the mail server is?

Sorry if that was a bit confusing.. obviously in need of DNS training ;)

Any help very appreciated. David.


Change the A RR of your domain (let's say example.com) and of www.example.com to the IP address of the Rackspace server. Leave mail.example.com as it is and create an MX RR for example.com pointing to mail.example.com.

  • 1
    +1 and also change the www RR from a CNAME to an A record type. As far as changing your DNS host, if you are happy with them, there is no reason to change. It's also good practice not to put all your eggs in one basket unless Rackspace gives you better tools and support. – John Virgolino Jun 9 '10 at 6:29
  • Hi guys, thanks so much for the response... I am going to google some DNS resources (for dummies!) to try to better understand this.. in the past I have just pointed the whole domain to another server. Just for reference, when you guys mention RR do you mean the DNS record? Have set the A record to the public IP address of the Rackspace server.. so just awaiting the propergating process.. Incidentally, Rackspace do have a reasonable DNS manager from what I can see.. not sure of the details though. Thanks again guys! – David S Jun 9 '10 at 22:37
  • Actually still have issues... again it is most definately my lack of understanding... anyway, here goes: It seems the domain name registrar is pointing to nameservers on another hosting company (i.e. where the mail/hosting is). So I guess the question is if I change the A record at the registrar to go to the new hosting at rackspace, should that work? or is it because the registrar is forwarding to another nameserver? should it be the DNS settings on that forwarded nameserver? Sorry, must sound very remedial, but there we go... – David S Jun 11 '10 at 1:24
  • first, RR stands for resource record, which is for example an A resource record, as you already noticed. You have to change the settings in the nameservers which are authoritative for your domain. Check with the registrar of your domain(s), which nameservers are configured and change the resource records on these. – joschi Jun 13 '10 at 5:45

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