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DNS Template and Tool Suite
In some instances, you new clients may already have a domain name registered and hosting at another provider. Transferring an existing domain name from one hosting provider to another can be a complicated matter but really need not be. A suite of DNS templates and tools in conjunction with some sound and thorough instruction can make the transfer process very painless and straightforward.

  • Domain Name Modification Template Generator
    There are a couple of ways to modify the current DNS information for a domain name that wishes to effect a transfer. One is to simply modify the zone file at the current Primary Name Server such that is points to a new IP address. The other method (which is preferred) is to actually change the Primary and Secondary Name Server information for a domain name. If the domain name is currently registered with Network Solutions, then a domain name modification template can be generated using the Domain Name Modification Template Generator. This template generator is included in the DNS Template and Tool Suite.

    NOTE: The Domain Name Modification Template Generator works only for domains registered with Network Solutions. It can not be used to modify the registrations of domain names registered with other registrars, such as Verio and Internet Names WorldWide.

  • TTL Tool
    After you modify your Domain Name Service (DNS) information, you will want to have both sites active for a period equivalent to the "time to live" (TTL) information for your domain name. The TTL is the amount of time that the current domain name information remains in Internet Name Server caches. It is smart not to cancel a client's current hosting service until after a time equivalent to the TTL has elapsed. A quick way to check TTL information is to use the tool provided in the DNS Template and Tool Suite. You can interface with this tool using a FORM element such as is shown below:

    <form method=POST action="/cgi-bin/library/tts/ttl.pl">
    <input name="name" size=24 maxlength=72>
    <input type="submit" value="Check TTL">

    A working example of a TTL lookup form is found below:

To install the DNS Tool and Template Suite on your Virtual Server you must connect to your Virtual Server via Telnet or SSH and do the following.

  1. Execute the following command to install the Domain Name Modification Generator and TTL Tool CGIs.

    % vinstall dns-tts

  2. Specify the return e-mail address for messages created by the Domain Name Modification Template Generator. Do this by substituting the e-mail address for INSERT YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS HERE in the ~/www/cgi-bin/library/tts/nsi-modify.pl file.

    # from whom does the email template get mailed

    Be sure to place a "\" character before the "@" sign in the e-mail address, like this "myself\@YOUR-DOMAIN.NAME".

Two subroutines in the ~/www/cgi-bin/library/tts/util.pl file are used to print out header and footer information. These functions are print_header_info and print_footer_info. Feel free to modify these functions such that the CGI outputs pages that are in synch with the motifs of the rest of your site.

You may also want to compose a page which outlines the steps required to transfer a domain name to a Virtual Server. See this page for ideas:

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