The process of redirecting your domain to custom servers (i.e. separate from the domain name registrar e.g. GoDaddy) is quite simple. You simply need to change to Domain Name Server (DNS) records. This tutorial assumes email will be hosted by the same hosting account used to host the domain name (website). To point your GoDaddy registered domain name to custom servers:
Log in to your hosting provider account and add the domain name in question to your account.
Identify / locate your hosting provider’s name servers. There should be (at least) two, and they will most likely look something like this:
Log in to your GoDaddy account.
On the main menu, click on ‘My Products’.
Under the section titled ‘All Products and Services,’ click on the ‘Manage’ button or the right side of the page next to ‘DNS’.
At the bottom of the next page, under ‘Additional Settings’ click on ‘Manage DNS’.
Under the section titled ‘Nameservers’ click the ‘Change’ button, click on ‘Enter my own nameservers (advanced)’ enter your custom nameserver address(es) and click ‘Save’.
Congratulations, you’re all done! While the actual process of redirecting nameservers is quick (instantaneous) there is often server redundancy and latency involved, so it may take some time for your domain to propagate or reconcile properly to the new server address without intermittent hiccups. Most hosting providers say to allow up to 48 hours. But you can usually expect the process to take less than an hour.
When you check to see if your domain is pointing to your new hosting provider, be sure to clear your browser cache if you’ve visited the site before. A hard refresh (e.g. CTRL + SHIFT + R) should do the trick. If not, flush your IP cache. In Windows for instance, open the Command Prompt (type ‘cmd’ in Windows search bar) and type
ipconfig /flushdns and hit Enter. Check the site again. If it still doesn’t propagate, it may just be a latency / redundancy issue. Make sure your domain is showing up elsewhere ‘on the web’ (other computers at other IP addresses). You can use tools like Network-Tools.com, Ultratools.com, or Check-Host.net, or DNS Watch to run a traceroute to make sure your site is reconciling to your hosting provider’s IP address.
If your domain name is reconciling properly according to the traceroute results, give it a little more time, and you should see your domain pointing to your new servers shortly. If the traceroute is unsuccessful, contact your hosting provider for additional assistance.
Happy hosting – now go make something great!