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July 14, 2012
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July 17, 2012

Nameservers

First and foremost, before you begin modifying any WHM/cPanel settings, or before you begin setting up accounts, you will need to decide whether or not you will be running your own DNS or using an alternative, like 2012S’s.

Don’t know what a nameserver is? Read up on the basics:

Nameserver: A computer (and a program on the computer) that translates domain names into the proper numeric IP address (or vice versa).

There is no advantage to using our nameservers as opposed to your own unless you have multiple machines hosted here, or are already an established customer with domains in our nameservers. We recommend that you run your own nameserver for a variety of reasons ranging from ease of management to compatibility with cPanel. In this guide we will assume that you wish to setup your own nameservers (see below for transfering pre-existing nameservers)

The first step is to register the domain you wish to use as the domain of your nameservers. This is quite a hassle to change later, so make sure you choose a domain that you will keep. You will need to pick two IP addresses that you wish to use for your nameservers. The most common method is to pick the first two addresses that you were provisioned – these IP addresses can still be used for other things. After you register the domain you wish to use as your nameserver and pick two IP addresses, you will need to ‘register your nameservers’ as your registrar. The most common (and standard) nameserver convention is:

ns1.domain.com
ns2.domain.com

You can use any subdomains you’d like for this, although we recommend you stick with the aformentioned convention.

Now, log in to your domain’s control panel at your registrar and look for a link that says, “Create Nameserver” or “Register DNS” and input the nameserver names and IPs. Your nameservers won’t exist until you have done this. You can now update the Domain Servers for the domain you registered to reflect your new nameservers.

Almost any DNS modification or addition requires a “propagation” period. This is the period of time that it takes for all nameservers across the internet to notice your modification. To read more about DNS propagation, see Serena M. Giddens’ excellent explanation here.

You can now add your new nameservers to WHM and configure them to begin working. Note that you will not be allowed to add nameservers to WHM that are registered elsewhere (ie, an old host) before ICANN propagation has completed. Basically, until the world recognizes the DNS change from your old host to your new host, cPanel will not let you use those nameservers.

To add your nameservers for use in WHM:

1) Click “Basic cPanel/WHM Setup” in WHM
2) Under “Primary Nameserver” put the value for your first nameserver (ie: ns1.yourdomain.com).
3) Under “Secondary Nameserver” put the value for your second nameserver (ie: ns2.yourdomain.com).
4) Under “Primary Nameserver” click “Assign an IP address.” Assign it the IP address that you chose for this nameserver earlier.
5) Repeat for “Secondary Nameserver.”
6) Under “Primary Nameserver” click “Add an ‘A’ Entry for this Nameserver”.
7) Repeat for “Secondary Nameserver.”
Note: Put nothing in the value for “Master Nameserver” as this will cause quite a few problems.
8) Click Save.
9) Click “Manage Nameserver IPs” on the left menu to verify the existance of your nameservers within WHM, and also if they are pointing to the proper IPs according to WHM.

To transfer pre-existing nameservers from a previous host, you will simply need to change the IP addresses these nameservers are pointed to at your registrar to reflect your new IP addreses here at 2012S. After that, follow the 9 steps above.