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Trapper Zoid

[web] Registering a web domain

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Hi everyone; I've got a bit of a newbie question about the best way to register web domains. I'm looking to sign up with a web host sometime soon so I can start experimenting with web development, and I'm now wondering about what is the best way to register my web domain. I'm new to the whole web host/domain thing so I'm not sure what's the best way to go about setting everything up. Most web hosts offer at least one free web domain with their hosting plans. However whatever name I pick is most likely to stay with me, so I want to make sure I have control over it. It's possible I might need to change hosts in the future and I'd like to transfer the web domain with me. I'm worried that if I need to switch hosts the domain might expire or be unmovable. Thus I'm wondering if it might be better to just find a domain I like now from somewhere like GoDaddy and park it for a few days while I sign up with a host, keeping my domain registrar service and hoster separate. By the way, is there a reason why there are some places that charge a whole lot more for domain registration services than GoDaddy? Some places (like GoDaddy) charge less than ten bucks per year, but I've seen some prices go up to nearly a hundred per year.

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Just browsing through GoDaddy's stuff, it doesn't seem like they offer plans which let you SSH into the machine you're being hosted on. I think I'd literally die without that.

Personally, I bought a plan from DreamHost (the cheapest one they offer) and I'm very satisfied with it, for the most part (only gripe is that I don't have a dedicated server, because I can't afford one). If you use a promotional code, you can get a year's worth of hosting for 22USD (comes with a free domain registration).

Anyway. I don't actually know how domain registrations are done (ie, not doing it through a host), or how you'd claim ownership over a domain etc. I'm pretty sure DreamHost registers the domain in your name, such that you could transfer it over to another host or something, but I honestly haven't looked into it. My domain name is pretty silly ;)

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Quote:
Original post by Mushu
Just browsing through GoDaddy's stuff, it doesn't seem like they offer plans which let you SSH into the machine you're being hosted on. I think I'd literally die without that.

Personally, I bought a plan from DreamHost (the cheapest one they offer) and I'm very satisfied with it, for the most part (only gripe is that I don't have a dedicated server, because I can't afford one). If you use a promotional code, you can get a year's worth of hosting for 22USD (comes with a free domain registration).

Oops, I guess my initial post wasn't very clear; I'm not thinking of going with GoDaddy for the hosting, just for registering web domains. Actually, I'm leaning strongly towards signing up with DreamHost myself; it seems decent as a starter host for someone like me. If anyone wants to suggest a promotional code to use, I'd be happy to use it (from the number I see on the Internet I'm guessing there's some sort of referral deal going on, so I'd prefer to give the props to a GameDevver [smile]).

Quote:
Anyway. I don't actually know how domain registrations are done (ie, not doing it through a host), or how you'd claim ownership over a domain etc. I'm pretty sure DreamHost registers the domain in your name, such that you could transfer it over to another host or something, but I honestly haven't looked into it. My domain name is pretty silly ;)

That's what I think too. I'm also pretty sure DreamHost will transfer it over to another host, but I'd still have to manage the host through DreamHost. However it's likely I'll be registering more than one domain in the near future for different purposes, and it's probably best to do that through the same place to keep things simple.

Heck, I've probably answered my question myself in these posts; given I'll be needing more than one domain and I'm uncertain about which host I'll be at in a year or two it makes sense to register domains at some place like GoDaddy - which I'm pretty sure I won't be hosting at due to their restrictions, but offers great domain registeration - and keep the two separate. I suppose I'm just looking for the provebial thumbs up from someone more experienced with the whole web thing to put my mind at ease.

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I would keep the registration/dns and hosting separate for the reasons you mentioned. You're much more likely to move your hosting and it's a smoother process if you don't have to change where your dns server are at the same time. I use GoDaddy for domain registration and host on Aplus.net.

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Ah good; that's what I thought was sensible. Given registering a web domain is pretty cheap I might as well sign up for one today and assign it across once I ges hosting.

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Original post by Trapper Zoid
I suppose I'm just looking for the provebial thumbs up from someone more experienced with the whole web thing to put my mind at ease.

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Thanks everyone. My first choice of web address was free (as I thought it would), so now I've got it parked, ready for whatever I want to put there. Now I just need to sign up to a web host, and I'm set.

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If you are interested in a webhost that is beginner-friendly, you might take a look at A Small Orange. I've been with them for almost a year with no major problems. Frankly, all I ever hear about Dreamhost is how horrible their support and uptime is.

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As a professional web developer I have to cringe on your advice - "go to godaddy.com". That is about the worst advice to follow - whether your looking for any services they offer or not.

They are the main source of problamatic customer service and hold ups with domain transfers. They are not friendly, they are not forgiving, they will not work with you to re-establish access to your domain, or anything for that matter.

I'm really sorry if you've already registered your domain name with GoDaddy but I'd recommend reneweing elsewhere, and make sure you do it a month or two ahead of time so you don't have worry about GoDaddy trying to steal the domain name.

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Really? I was generally under the impression they were considered decent for domain registration. I had read a few cases of poor customer service, but with a company that size I thought that was only to be expected.

At the moment I'm only running a personal site, so I'm happy to use this to test the water with various companies to see who suits me best. I'm prepared to consider switching companies when the renewals come up in a year if need be.

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