How to update name servers

This post is part of the Blogging Noob 101 series

Overview

These simple instructions apply to the following situation:

You have 1) Purchased a new domain name and 2) You have prepaid for the web hosting account to be used with this domain name. Next, your new domain name must somehow be associated with the web hosting space you purchased. That’s what these steps are for.

Prerequisites & requirements

You must know the name server settings (e.g., the values of the variable “name server”). There are usually two values: a name server 1 and a name server 2. If you don’t have this information, it’s quite easy to obtain. The required name server settings can be obtained from your web host; simply refer to their web site or telephone their tech support department. (Also, the name server settings are likely described in an email sent to you by your web hosting company when you signed up.)

Although there are exceptions, the most popular naming conventions used for name servers are NS1.hostingcompany.com and NS2.hostingcompany.com.

The simple steps

  1. Login to your domain registrar[1]
  2. Choose Domain Manager
  3. From the list of domain names in your account, select the applicable domain name
  4. Update the two (2) name server variables with the values you obtained from your web host

If you would prefer your webmaster or web developer to take care of this for you, then he would need your login info (the "credentials") to your domain registrar account.

GoDaddy instructions

Follow these instructions to change the name servers for your new domain name registered at GoDaddy.

1. Go to the GoDaddy.com home page
2. Login to your account
3. Go to the Domain Manager for the list of your domain names (All Products -- Domains -- Domain management)
4. Place a check mark in the box the left of the domain name you want to configure (Allows various domain variables and options to be selected and configured)
5. Click on Nameservers -- Set Nameservers
6. Change the first two existing name servers to the name server variables provided by your web host (e.g., NS1.BLUEHOST.COM, NS2.BLUEHOST.COM)

That’s it! Now the updated name server information must propagate across the web. While this can sometimes take over an hour, it usually happens in five or ten minutes (or even less).

Bluehost instructions

Follow these instructions to add your new domain name to your existing Bluehost web hosting account. This can only be done after the name servers have been updated properly at GoDaddy and after the new settings have propagated.

1. Login to Bluehost
2. Choose Domain Manager
3. Click on Assign a domain to your cPanel account

Assign domain steps

1. Choose the second option: Use a domain that is not already associated with your account. (unless the domain name is already associated with your account for some reason); Type your new domain name into the second field
2. Verify Ownership

Bluehost now conducts a quick automatic search to determine name servers. If the name server information has propogated, then you will be allowed to continue setting it up. If not, you will have to give the new name server values (the ones you entered into GoDaddy in the applicable steps above) additional time to propogate. Once the name servers are set correctly and have propogated, continue with the setup:

Choose Addon Domain (unless you just want to park it)
Choose Addon Directory and Sub-domain
• The directory should exactly match your domain name without the .com (or .org, .net, or other extension); all lowercase, no spaces
• The sub-domain should be the same as the addon directory

Footnotes

[1] Domain registrar

Domain registrar is a fancy name for the site/company you used to buy the applicable domain name(s). An example of a popular domain registrar would be GoDaddy.com, which happens to be this blogger’s preferred domain registrar.

Resources: How to update name servers

Removed content
First, we must login to your domain registrar (in your case, probably GoDaddy.com) and then associate your new domain name with the web hosting account. To accomplish this, we simply update the name servers (aka “nameservers”) associated with your domain.

as follows: (NOTE: The IP addresses provided below are only FYI; the IP addresses are generally NOT required)
1. ns1.bluehost.com (IP address: 74.220.195.31)
2. ns2.bluehost.com (IP address: 69.89.16.4)