One of the ways in which the DNS settings for a domain can be updated is to change the domain name servers (also referred to as DNS Servers; name servers or nameservers).
These servers act as a directory for any look-up made on a particular domain, whether someone is attempting to browse a website or check for new e-mail messages. Every domain on the World Wide Web makes use of at least two name servers so that, in the event of one of them being unavailable, there is no disruption to any services linked to the domain.
Name servers often have a naming scheme which allows you to identify the primary as well as the secondary servers.
Many hosting providers will use a naming convention like this:
Others will use a themed naming convention. For example, SA Domain uses the following name servers:
You can update the name servers for your domain using the following steps:
- Log in to the Client Area.
- Click on Domains menu and select My Domains.
- Locate the domain that you wish to update from the My Domains page and click on the corresponding Active button.
- On the Managing "example.com" page, scroll down and click on Change the nameservers your domain points to.
- Enter the new name servers in the same order as instructed by your hosting provider.
- Click on the Change Nameservers button to save the changes.
Once you have updated the domain, you will need to allow between 1 and 48 hours for the changes to take effect. This is due to a process known as DNS propagation which is a period in which the changes are updated around the Internet.
Please note: If you are updating the domain because either your e-mail is hosted elsewhere but your website is hosted by SA Domain (or vice-versa), then it is recommended that you either update the individual DNS entries related to this particular service instead or that you forward all of your DNS entries to your hosting provider prior to updating the domain. The reason for doing this is that a name server update effectively hands control of the your DNS from one hosting provider to another which can result in some of your services being disrupted if certain entries are not included on the new name servers.
Updating .za Domains:
The ZA Central Registry has specific requirements when it comes to updating .za domains. Before you proceed with the update, your hosting provider must ensure that a) the new name servers contain a zone record for your domain and b) the names and number of name servers in the zone record matches the information that they have provided you with. Should either of these requirements not be met, the ZA Central Registry will bar any attempt to update the domain.