When you dive into the Internet adventure, Domain Name System (DNS) will become your work environment, and DNS records, your constant tools to reach different purposes.
What are DNS records for?
DNS records are text files, and they hold important details related to a domain and its configuration. DNS records also contain critical instructions for name servers (DNS servers) about how to handle different aspects of the domain. There are multiple types of DNS records. Each follows a different purpose. In some cases, they combined can complement each other and work together to reach a common objective.
How to create, edit and delete DNS records?
Usually, once you register a domain, you can manage its DNS records from a control panel. You can access it through your registrar (where you registered your domain) or your hosting provider (where your site is hosted).
If you only have a domain, DNS data will be there (control panel), accessible through the menu. If you have more than a single domain, first, choose the domain in which you will add, edit or delete Domain Name System records.
Then, you will see the list of supported DNS records. Choose the one you are interested in, and you will be required to fill in different fields, more or less, depending on the type of DNS record you choose. Remember that based on its type and purpose, Domain Name System records have specific settings and values. Once you provide all the necessary information, you just need to click on “create a record”.
To edit and delete Domain Name System records, just look for them, click on them and select the action: edit or delete. In the first case, you will access the corresponding fields of the DNS record so you can edit the values (information) you need. To delete, you just have to confirm you are sure you want to do it, and that is it!
Additions, editions, and deletions don’t take effect instantly. They have to be propagated for them to be updated on a server level and then take effect in the domain. It can take from a few hours to 48 hours.
What are the most popular DNS records?
A or AAAA records, whose letter A stands for address, map a domain or subdomain to its corresponding IP address (IPv4 or IPv6). Through them, you can know where a website is hosted.
CNAME or Canonical Name records help you to create an alias for a domain or subdomain.
MX or Mail Exchange records point out the mail servers in charge of the domain’s email.
PTR or Pointer record helps to prove the sender’s IP address by matching it with the domain name.
NS or Nameserver record holds the name of the authoritative name server of a DNS zone or domain.
SOA, or the Start of Authority record, contains administrative information about your DNS zone.
This quick guide to DNS records can be a good starting point for you. There is no way to be online without DNS and DNS records. Better to be familiar with them!