Domainmonster.com Domain Editorials
What do I need to know about DNS?
What do you need to know about DNS? After reading this article you should know everything you need about DNS to help you manage your domains and your DNS effectively. DNS stands for Domain Name System. DNS translates a Fully Qualified Domain Name to a computer readable IP address (i.e. 188.8.131.52. Try typing the IP into your browsers address bar. It will take you to Domainmonster.com. This makes the internet accessible for everyone. I bet you can’t imagine having to remember thousands of numbers just to get to your favourite sites.
“A” records are the main DNS record used to make this process possible. An A record links an IP Address to a domain name or URL. E.g. 184.108.40.206 bound to Domainmonster.com. If the domain Domainmonster.com is registered and hosted, then when people type that URL into their browser, they will be directed to the correct address. Think of A records like a physical address. Imagine if somebody asked you to come and meet them at GPS location 37 23.516 -122 02.625. Wouldn’t you much rather meet them at a real address which you can put into your sat nav system and head straight to? This is information you can really use, that’s all an A record does for IP addresses.
“MX” records are another important kind of records you will need to know about when managing DNS. MX stands for Mail eXchanger. These records are used to define the server on the internet that can be used to handle email for your domain. E.g. if you use firstname.lastname@example.org, then the mail server will look for an MX record pointing to domainmonster.com. Generally the MX record will be a domain name, so then the IP address from the A record is queried and the mail is sent to the server. It all sounds a bit complicated but imagine a sorting office for a street of houses. MX Records can also contain priority information, so if there are multiple MX records for that address, the mail server will start at the lowest priority record and work its way up. This allows different servers to be used, so if one mail server is down, a backup can be used to ensure mail is sent and received. If all the servers are down, MX records can provide a queue where mail can be sent as soon as a server comes back online.
“CNAME” records, or Canonical Name Records, show that one domain is a part of a “canonical” domain name. i.e. www. Or mail. They allow you to have a few different subdomains as part of your site. E.g. mail.mydomain.com, forum.mydomain.com, faq.mydomain.com. CNAME records can be useful in managing multiple domains that you want to use as a single address.
As a Domainmonster.com customer you have access to the Domainmonster.com Control Panel where you can manage all your DNS records, live and in real-time! There are a number of DNS management tools which can be used to create, maintain and update lots of different records; A, MX, CNAME, TXT, NS and SRV, see where changes have been made to your records and set preferences for your records to ensure your domain is managed properly!