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I am hosting a website under the domain www.onomasticon.net . The website is a static website, hosted on AWS Cloudfront, serving from an S3 bucket. It's working OK. I also want to make this site available from onomasticon.net . I have set up another S3 bucket (forwarding to the main one) and another Cloudfront distribution.

However, I can't seem to set up the DNS properly. The domain is managed in Amazon's Route 53. Based on the documentation I found, I've set up an ALIAS record, pointing to the secondary Cloudfront distribution.

This seemed to work for a while, and now it's no longer working. The issue is the DNS. When doing a lookup for www.onomasticon.net (using the 8.8.8.8 DNS), I get the right response. Looking onomasticon.net results in an error - the domain can't be found.

How can I get this to work?

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  • Did you create a second Hosted Zone in Route 53? That is not the right thing to do, but I've seen a number of people do that in this situation. – Michael - sqlbot Jan 1 '20 at 13:57
  • I did not, I have just one Hosted Zone. Can I create two zones for the same root domain? – zmbq Jan 2 '20 at 9:10
  • You can, but don't. The authoritative nameservers for the new zone would be different so only one of them can be active at any given time. – Michael - sqlbot Jan 2 '20 at 10:56
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    Get the dddexample.cloudfront.net value from the DNS entry that isn't working and try that in your browser. If it doesn't work, the CloudFront distro is disabled or you have a typo. Those values aren't aggressively validated by Route 53 so you could have a typo. (It seems ominous that you could just put somebody else's value here, but it turns out to have no real impact because of how the value is actually used -- it doesn't e.g allow somebody to point their hostname to your distro. – Michael - sqlbot Jan 2 '20 at 11:00
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It usually takes some time until the CloudFront distribution is activated and published and the ALIAS record becomes active in the DNS.

It is best to wait another quarter to half an hour and then look again. It is also best to try to check the DNS record again with another DNS server, since most DNS servers have a cache.

Please also make sure that you have entered exactly the correct distribution name in Route 53.

If all this hasn't worked, try again to recreate the record or even the distribution completely. If none of this works, contact AWS support.

PS: In future, please also write in your questions how long you have been waiting, as this is an important factor with DNS-related problems.

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  • Oh, sorry, the records have been created a couple of weeks ago. – zmbq Jan 1 '20 at 12:41

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