I am rather new to DNS, and I am not sure as to how I should transfer the hosting of a website from one server to another, as well as the email and/or without the email. I inherited the following records for the domain from the last person managing it: Host Record Settings MX Record Settings

I know that I need to change the www host to point to the IP address of the new host, but I am not sure if I have the right IP. Additionally, I don't know how to change only the email, or what to put in the MX and/or records if I want to keep email at the old servers while moving the site. The new host provides the following information:

Required Name Servers (NS) for the domain name to be operational with your account.
NS1: dns1.50webs.com
NS2: dns2.50webs.com
Default Route

What do I put where for each scenario? If I put in the 'www' host record, will I lose the old email servers' connection to the domain?

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    As a slight aside, the first listed MX record is contains a typo: smpt.renp.com does not exist, however smpt.renp.com does. – Daniel Lawson Jul 6 '13 at 2:54
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    smtp.renp.com does exist. I noticed this when I looked at this a little after I asked the question. You repeated the typo by the way. – Jakob Weisblat Jul 6 '13 at 3:15
  • Damn, that'll teach me for smugly correcting tyops on the internet. :) – Daniel Lawson Jul 6 '13 at 10:42

An MX record, if present for a name, indicates which DNS names route mail for the domain, and gives a priority list for their use. It is optional, and if not present the A or AAAA record for the domain will be used.

Nowhere in there does www appear; the subdomain is not special. Without an MX record, the base DNS name of your domain (eg. without the www) will be used as the mail exchanger.

If you want to have proper control over which mailserver is used, you should create an additional subdomain (eg. mail), give it the IP of your mailserver, and create an MX record (with priority 10 and that domain, like IN MX 10 mail.your.domain.net. In that weird GUI you posted you can just give that DNS name and the priority.

In your screenshot, it looks like it is already set up this way. @ refers to the "current" base name, and two mail exchangers are specified. You will only change your mail exchangers if you change the A and AAAA records for those servers.

  • so if I want to transfer both mail and www to the new host, then I would put the IP address in the * box instead? – Jakob Weisblat Jul 6 '13 at 2:26
  • no, I would switch the entire DNS to the new host. Thanks for your help. – Jakob Weisblat Jul 6 '13 at 2:47

A good explanation on DNS Records, in fact my go-to reference, is Zytrax. Do a Google search for "zytrax dns" (without quotes).

(Sorry can't provide the link directly; my smartphone's Internet connection is a bit flaky atm)

It will serve you well to read all the chapters of Zytrax online 'book'; you will learn all the arcane syntax of DNS.

Now, in your situation, I assume you're changing webhosting? Then what you have to do is to contact your DNS registrant (i.e., the company where you bought your domain name from), and ask them to change the "NS" record for your domain to point to the two DNS servers as provided by your new hosting provider (50webs). That's it. Other configuration will be performed by 50webs. Most likely they will re-set your records (A for www, and MX for @) to some servers within 50webs.

tldr; basically 50webs is asking you to delegate (not "hand over"; you're still the domain's owner) management of all subdomains of your domain tothem

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    Back in the day, Zytrax was my initial DNS training manual. It's a good resource. – Fiasco Labs Jul 6 '13 at 3:51

You need to update the A record for all of your server in DNS , if you are going to change the Web Hosting , as New hosting provider will provide New IP address to your server. You need to ask your hosting provider to allocate new IP addresses (Public) to your servers which you want to access publically with DNS .

Also if your goind to use your hosting provider email server than you need to modify the mx records accordingly, please ask your hosting provider for details.

Your Question

What do I put where for each scenario? If I put in the 'www' host record, will I lose the old email servers' connection to the domain?

IP is your route please do not add this IP in your DNS. Yes if you will update your DNS with this IP than you will not be able to send receive emails form your domain.

A very good guide to understand DNS

  • thanks for the explanation and the guide you linked. Is the "default route" not what I want to put in the A www record? if it isn't, then how do I find out what I should put there? – Jakob Weisblat Jul 6 '13 at 2:31
  • Either you need to purchase Public IP from your hosting provider or ask your hosting provider if public IP is already associated with your server. – Abhishek Anand Amralkar Jul 6 '13 at 2:36
  • what if I don't want a public IP, and I just want my website to be associated with ns1.50webs.com? should I be filling out a different form? – Jakob Weisblat Jul 6 '13 at 2:40
  • I now realize that there is a different form for nameservers. Thanks for your help. – Jakob Weisblat Jul 6 '13 at 2:41

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