In this guide I will help you go through some information about DNS Propagation, also known more commonly as updating DNS Records.
This guide will be split into 4 segments:
- What is DNS Propagation?
- Why does it take long?
- Are their other ways to pass DNS Propagation?
- How do I check if DNS Propagation has been updated?
WHAT IS DNS PROPAGATION?
DNS Propagation is the process of the period of time it takes for a domain’s Name Servers to update, this process usually takes 24-48 hours to complete before changing efffect. It can also be referred to ISP (Internet Service Provider) nodes. These nodes have to update all over the world with the new Nameservers you’ve set your domain to.
These nodes are all over the world and they all need to be updated individualy, that is why it takes at least 24 hours to update.
Also, DNS caches can still show the old website for different people viewing it, it all depends on their location on earth.
WHY DOES IT TAKE SO LONG?
Let’s say you are currently living in Dublin, Ireland. You updated your name servers for a domain that’s hosted in Santa Monica, USA.
When anyone goes into the browser, and wishes to look up your website, they have to go through different servers in order to get to the server your website is stored at. People think that when you type in “Ilovetacotuesdayys.com”, the connection is instantly established between Dublin, Ireland and Santa Monica, USA. That is incorrect as it has to travel through many different connections, the path may vary each time.
This is the usual path:
Your browser -> Your computer -> Your Router -> Internet Provider -> Public DNS -> Domain Registrar -> DNS assigned to the domain you’re looking up -> Server on which the files are stored.
ARE THERE OTHER WAYS TO PASS DNS PROPAGATION?
You can point the domain to the destined IP address by changing the A record. You also have to set TLL to a minimal amount. When the record has been updated you can change the nameservers for your domain.
This will result in your domain being resolved from your previous host from the places where the propagation has not been completed yet and to a new one from the places where it has already been completed. IN this way you will avoid downtime as both hosts will not show you your new updated website.
HOW DO I CHECK IF DNS PROPAGATION HAS BEEN COMPLETED?
There really isn’t a way to tell when DNS records have been updated, there is websites that you can use to check but it all depends on your location in the world, your ISP and TTL applied to the domain. I have attached below a trustworthy DNS Checker that we sometimes use ourselves.
DNS Checkers work in a way that they provide a free check against any DNS Record in the world, they summarise the results they get and you receive it.
DNS Checker :
G Suite Toolbox: https://toolbox.googleapps.com/apps/dig/
WhatMyDNS: to check a domain name’s current IP address and DNS record information against multiple name servers located in different parts of the world: https://www.whatsmydns.net/#A/toolandplastic.ie
There is also another way of checking if DNS Propagation for yourself, for some people it might not be that simple to follow but I will try my best to explain it in this simple step by step. It consists of typing in commands into the command control panel.
After typing in any of the commands below, you can tell if the propagation has been complete for you if the result of these commands is the new IP Address. If it is not the new IP Address, that means DNS Propagation hasn’t been complete for you.
- Click on the Start button and search “CMD” into your search bar and click onto the application.
- After clicking into it, please type the following command; ns.lookup (your domain.ie) and hit enter.
- Or you could typ in Ping (your domain.ie) and hit enter
- Or another option is to type in traceroute -I -e (your domain.ie)
Trace (also known as Traceroute or TRACERT in Windows) is a utility that traces a the route that IP (Internet Protocol) packets take from your computer to an internet host, showing how many hops the packet requires to reach the host and how long it takes to reach each router. If you’re visiting a Web site and pages are appearing slowly, you can use traceroute to figure out where the longest delays are occurring.
Please remember put just a tracert command in Windows
That’s been it, I hope I have explained the basics of DNS Propagation or most commonly called as updating DNS records.
If you ever do need your DNS records updated please pop us in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will change them for you!
You can also reach us at TEL: (01) 495 1112