DNS – It’s Not So Hard Now is It?

As the world’s population becomes more and more technically advanced, the desire to host one’s own website becomes less of a fantasy and more of a reality.  With easy to install programs such as WampServer readily accessible to all, anyone can quickly set up their own “homegrown” server on a desktop at home.  The problem then becomes a simple matter of DNS servers and domains – how do we get them to point to our newly setup home server?  This is where DynDNS.com steps in – an online service that enables you to create DNS records, register domains, setup mail servers and more.

Levels of DNS services

For those needing DNS services, there are three levels – Dynamic DNS Free, Dynamic DNS Pro, and Custom DNS.

The Dynamic DNS Free service allows you to choose up  to five hostnames from their current list of 88 at no charge.  These are perfect for those needing a forwarding account (for when you’re offline or experience downtime) or even configurable MX records for mail routing.

The Dynamic DNS Pro is available at a yearly cost of $15.00.  This service gives you an additional 25 hostnames, access to their premium domains, wildcard capabilities as well as the ability to point CNAME records.

The final DNS service offered is Custom DNS.  For this you will need to have your own domain name hosted at DynDNS.  With Custom DNS you are allowed up to 75 DNS records per domain and there is support for a variety of DNS record types.  The Custom DNS service is available for $29.95 a year per domain name.  The company also offers secondary DNS at $39.95 per year per domain.  There are quite a lot of DNS choices with DynDNS.

Managing your account

To manage your DNS records, DynDNS.com has “My Services” area that enables you to quickly make the changes you need.  Each section is tied in with a corresponding help section (signified by a “?”) should you need assistance.  All of your chosen services are separated into type-specific sections.  Additionally, your account level services are listed with options to add on more items should the need arise.  When working on different sections of your account, you can also click on the preferences button.  This button will take you to an area that allows you to choose whether you wish to set your interface to a novice or expert level, depending upon your technical level.  While not the most efficient design for controlling your records, it does make up for this with the active help links.

Support options

If you do require further assistance in managing your account, DynDNS has a support section in place.  There is an FAQ, tutorials, suggestions for supporting tools and a contact area for the company.  DynDNS.com offers phone support as well.  Regular customer phone support is from 9 am to 5 pm EST Monday through Friday.  If you want the convenience of 24×7×365 support, you can opt to purchase Premier support on a per case basis at $74.95 each.  A pretty hefty price all things considered and it’s probably a better bet to stay with the standard phone support, supplementing this with the other available online options.

Conclusion

All told, DynDNS is a pretty good alternative to hosting with an online web host.  You end up having complete control, can add on services as you need them and have access to support if you end up stumped.  DynDNS is a company to check out if and when you decide to self-host your web site.


Ben looking cool

I hope you have enjoyed the posts that we continue to provide here at Solutions For Life.  Our goal is to continually educate our users on the technology around us.  We don’t write simply for our entertainment.  Nope, our goal is to educate us all how to connect to the world around you…

Sincerely,

Ben Adams

SENIOR IT CONSULTANT

DNS – It’s Not So Hard Now is It?
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