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Custom Domains, And Register.Com As The Registrar, Redux

During the past week, we had an interesting experience where customers of Register.Com were reporting broken custom domains - domains that were using DNS service provided by Register. We traced the problem to a bogus address record, on a Register DNS server.

ghs.google.com. 14400 IN CNAME ghs.google.com.

Some time yesterday, the problem was, supposedly, fixed.

Not.

This morning, in reviewing the many threads in BHG: Something Is Broken, I see a reply in one thread
I called Register.com again and walked through changing the DNS server settings one more time, and things are now working again.


In the process of closing that problem, I did a final Dig on the domain, and found an interesting detail.

; <<>> DiG 9.3.2 <<>> @dns090.a.register.com www.theresmytwocents.com ANY
; (1 server found)
;; global options: printcmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 33071
;; flags: qr aa rd; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 2, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 0

;; QUESTION SECTION:
;www.theresmytwocents.com. IN ANY

;; ANSWER SECTION:
www.theresmytwocents.com. 14400 IN CNAME ghs.google.com.
ghs.google.com. 21600 IN A 216.21.239.197

;; Query time: 109 msec
;; SERVER: 216.21.231.90#53(216.21.231.90)
;; WHEN: Tue Nov 25 16:39:03 2008
;; MSG SIZE rcvd: 83

Compare this to a Dig against my domain, "www.nitecruzr.net".

; <<>> DiG 9.3.2 <<>> @ns53.domaincontrol.com www.nitecruzr.net ANY
; (1 server found)
;; global options: printcmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 59650
;; flags: qr aa rd; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 1, AUTHORITY: 2, ADDITIONAL: 0

;; QUESTION SECTION:
;www.nitecruzr.net. IN ANY

;; ANSWER SECTION:
www.nitecruzr.net. 3600 IN CNAME ghs.google.com.

;; AUTHORITY SECTION:
nitecruzr.net. 3600 IN NS ns53.domaincontrol.com.
nitecruzr.net. 3600 IN NS ns54.domaincontrol.com.

;; Query time: 161 msec
;; SERVER: 216.69.185.27#53(216.69.185.27)
;; WHEN: Tue Nov 25 16:42:17 2008
;; MSG SIZE rcvd: 115

A correctly setup DNS server doesn't include fixed Address records pointing another domain, like "ghs.google.com", to the company parked server. Regardless whether this entry might be ignored by a non-authoritative server when asking for "ghs.google.com".

futuresite.register.com (216.21.239.197)
216.21.224.0 - 216.21.239.255
Register.com, Inc

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Comments

Annie said…
Bingo Chuck,

You solved my DNS problem last week on Blogger Help, "Something is Broken". "216.21.239.197" was what I found in my Register.com DNS setting before I deleted it and put in what you showed me I needed to have my blog work again. I had not put "216.21.239.197" in the A record, someone at Register.com had.

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