Rackspace Cloud Essentials - Enable your domain to be served from Rackspace Cloud

  • Last updated on: 2018-09-20
  • Authored by: Rackspace Support

Previous section: Rackspace Cloud Essentials - What are your name servers

In the previous article you learned how to identify the Rackspace Cloud Nameservers, and that you need to update them with your current domain registrar in order to enable an existing domain to be served from your new Cloud Server.

This article is intended for customers who have not completed this process before. It goes into more detail about how the Domain Name System (DNS) works and how to enable and test your domain. It also provides answers to some basic questions about enabling your domain at Rackspace.

Frequently asked questions about domain enablement

The following FAQs provide answers to frequent questions about domain enablement.

Is Rackspace a domain registrar?

No, Rackspace is not a domain registrar. Rackspace is a provider of world-class, on-demand Cloud Hosting services that are backed by our commitment to provide you with a Fanatical Experience™.

In order to host a domain from your Cloud Server, you first need to register it at a domain registrar and then enable it at Rackspace.

What is a name server?

In the DNS, the name server helps translate a human-readable domain (such as rackspace.com) into its corresponding Internet Protocol (IP) address. This information is reported up a hierarchical chain of name servers that store the domain name-IP mappings in a directory.

When a user enters a domain name in their browser’s address bar, the high-level directory in the DNS is queried and the request cascades down through a chain of name servers. The final chain of name servers has the authoritative answer to the request in the form of the IP address that matches the domain name.

When you’re ready to host your site on a Rackspace Cloud Server, you need to update the name servers so that the DNS knows the new IP address that is serving the content of your site.

What are Rackspace’s name servers?

For Rackspace Cloud services, you need to use the following name servers:

  • ns.rackspace.com and ns2.rackspace.com

How do I enable the domain at Rackspace?

When you first register a domain, you’re usually assigned the name servers that belong to the domain registrar unless you specify otherwise. In order to switch to Rackspace name servers, you need to log in to your account at your domain registrar, locate the section of the domain registrar’s portal that stores the name servers, and change the name servers to ns.rackspace.com and ns2.rackspace.com.

Finally, you need to create the corresponding DNS records for your domain in the Rackspace Cloud Control Panel. For instructions, see create DNS records through the Control Panel.

How long does DNS propagation take?

The term DNS propagation refers to the amount of time it takes for the updated information that you provide to your registrar (the new name servers for your domain) to be communicated through the hierarchical DNS system. In general, DNS propagation of new name server information should take no longer than 24 to 48 hours.

How do I know if my domain is set up correctly?

There are a number of methods that you can use to test the DNS. For example, you can use the dig command from a Linux® machine to view the DNS records that are associated with your domain. This method also confirms that DNS propagation is complete. In addition, there are several websites that have browser interfaces that can run the dig command against the domain.

After you confirm that DNS propagation is complete and that the A records pointing to your Cloud Server are available through the dig command, you can test the functionality of your website through a standard web browser. If you still can’t view your website, the firewall settings or web application might be misconfigured. Ensure that the necessary ports (such as port 80 or 443) are open on the Cloud Server to enable normal HTTP or HTTPS traffic.

The level of support that we provide for Managed Infrastructure Cloud Servers encompasses the server hardware, data center environment, and Internet connectivity to your server. We do not support the configuration of applications on your server, including operating system-level configurations. If you’ve verified that the DNS and the firewall are correctly configured and your site is still inaccessible, you need to take a closer look at the configuration of your web applications.

Next steps: Create DNS records for Cloud Servers with the Control Panel

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